The Tennessee Abortion Amendment
, or Senate Joint Resolution 127
, is on the November 4, 2014
statewide ballot in Tennessee
as a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment
The measure would ask voters to decide whether there should be a "fundamental right" to abortion.
The proposed amendment aims to reverse a 2000 ruling by the Tennessee Supreme Court that stated that the state constitution's right to privacy afforded greater protections for abortion than the United States Constitution. The case was Planned Parenthood v. Sundquist.
Specifically, the measure states that abortion is not protected by the state constitution. Additionally, the measure would allow lawmakers to require a waiting period prior to an abortion, place greater restrictions on later-term abortions and draft rules on what doctors are required to tell women prior to an abortion.
Text of measure
The proposed amendment would add a new section to Article I of the Tennessee Constitution, which would read:
|Nothing in this Constitution secures or protects a right to abortion or requires the funding of an abortion. The people retain the right through their elected state representatives and state senators to enact, amend, or repeal statutes regarding abortion, including, but not limited to, circumstances of pregnancy resulting from rape or incest or when necessary to save the life of the mother.
Path to the ballot
- See also: Legislatively-referred constitutional amendments in Tennessee
The Tennessee General Assembly must approve a proposed amendment in two successive sessions. In the second such session, the proposed amendment must earn 2/3rds approval, however, in the first session, it only needs majority approval.
- ↑ The Commercial Appeal,"Abortion opponents watch 2014 for shift in state legislation," January 17, 2011
- ↑ The Commercial Appeal,"Tennessee Senate advances abortion amendment," April 18, 2011
- ↑ The Tennessean,"TN Senate to debate abortion revisions," April 11, 2011
- ↑ Tennessee General Assembly,"SJR 127 full text," retrieved April 19, 2011
- ↑ The Tennessean,"TN Senate moves constitutional measure on abortion closer to public vote," April 19, 2011
- ↑ Nashville Public Radio,'Abortion Amendment up to the State House," April 18, 2011
- ↑ Chattanooga Times Free Press,"Tennessee: House OK puts abortion measure on 2014 ballot," May 20, 2011
- ↑ Associated Press,"Tennessee anti-abortion measure headed for 2014 ballot," May 20, 2011