Referred Law 6

This November, South Dakotans will be the first Americans since 1972 to vote on whether abortion should be legal. On March 6, 2006, South Dakota Governor Mike Rounds signed into law HB 1215, the Women’s Life and Health Protection Act. The measure would outlaw abortion in the state, although it would permit a doctor to perform procedures to save the life of a pregnant mother while also making reasonable medical efforts to save the life of her unborn baby. Although the legislation passed by overwhelming margins in the South Dakota House (50-18) and Senate (23-12), pro-abortion forces gathered the 16,728 signatures needed to force a referendum on the bill. They believe that the law is objectionable because it does not have an exception for rape. Many pro-life leaders, including Priests for Life, have gathered together to help Referred Law 6 pass, while the South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families, NARAL Pro-Choice America and Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota have sponsored an ad campaign to sway the public to vote “NO.” South Dakota could very well set the stage for other states to outlaw abortion. This is an important battle. Stay tuned for a report after the elections.

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