Recent polling for The Denver Post shows that 48 percent of Colorado’s citizens plan to vote No on Amendment 48, a November ballot initiative that would amend the state constitution to define a fertilized, unimplanted human egg as a full person with all civil rights. Thirty percent of the electorate supports it, and 22 percent of the electorate remains undecided.
Such “personhood” initiatives are thinly veiled attempts to ban all abortion rights, also threatening women’s ability to access oral and emergency contraception, IUDs, in-vitro fertilization and even emergency health care that might put a fertilized egg in danger. By redefining “person,” the amendment could impact thousands of state laws, causing legal nightmares for lawyers and courts.
Opponents of the measure include a wide spectrum of groups and individuals, including Colorado’s anti-abortion Democratic governor, Bill Ritter. According to the Colorado secretary of state, the No on 48 campaign has received close to $1.7 million in contributions, the largest donors being NARAL Pro-Choice Colorado Foundation and the Planned Parenthood Western Regional Assembly. The Yes on 8 campaign has raised less than $300,000, its main public proponents being the groups Colorado for Equal Rights and the American Life League. The latter promotes the idea that birth control pills cause abortion.