Personhood Amendment Fails in Mississippi

Mississippi voters today defeated a personhood amendment.

[T]he full wording of the measure as it appeared on the ballot define[d] every human being as a person "from the moment of fertilization, cloning or the equivalent thereof."

The Amendment was largely an effort of Keith Mason, co-founder of the group Personhood USA, based in Colorado. The group tried and failed to get the Amendment passed in Colorado in 2008 and 2010. The ACLU says Arkansas, Montana, Florida, Oregon, Nevada may be the next battlegrounds.

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    Maybe there's hope for us yet (5.00 / 7) (#1)
    by NYShooter on Tue Nov 08, 2011 at 11:34:45 PM EST
    When even products of the arguably worst educational system in the country voted "No" on this abomination of a bill, there may be hope for us yet.

    Exactly what a close friend opined this am (none / 0) (#14)
    by christinep on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 02:40:07 PM EST
    My friend originally hails from Mississippi. Today, she said that she was even proud of her birth state (normally, she ascribes her heritage to the state her family moved when she finished elementary school.)

    While it does renew optimism in possibilities, it also shows the results of conservatives taking ideology a step too far.


    It evidently even went beyond what the (none / 0) (#18)
    by MO Blue on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 04:15:36 PM EST
    Catholic bishop would support and that is really saying something.

    But Bishop Joseph N. Latino of Jackson, Miss., said that although he and other Catholic leaders "admire the goals" of the proposed amendment, "we do not believe a Mississippi Personhood Amendment is the best means to pursue an end to abortion in Mississippi and our nation." link

    hadn't followed this campaign (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by desmoinesdem on Tue Nov 08, 2011 at 11:44:08 PM EST
    because I was focused on the Iowa Senate district 18 special election (Democrats held the seat, retaining a 26-24 majority in the chamber).

    I am so pleasantly surprised that MS voters rejected this initiative. I would have expected the vote to go the other way.

    People are already working in Oregon (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by caseyOR on Tue Nov 08, 2011 at 11:55:08 PM EST
    to put a similar initiative on the ballot next year. It is currently tied up in the state courts over a dispute about the ballot title. Once that is resolved, signature gathering will begin in earnest.

    It would be great if these people failed to get enough signatures to make the ballot, but I'd be surprised if that happened. So, I expect an expensive and ugly campaign battle. If this makes it to the ballot, we will vote on it during the general election in November of next year.

    My guess is that the Oregon Republican Party will help these people get on the ballot if for no other reason than to lure rightwing voters to the polls next November.

    Next year's going to be hell here in Oregon.

    Do you really think there (none / 0) (#5)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 08:21:27 AM EST
    is a chance that it would pass in Oregon?  On the wording, are they trying to mislabel it to encourage people to make a vote that is the opposite of what they meant to support?

    Hard to say. A lot depends on what (5.00 / 2) (#16)
    by caseyOR on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 03:37:17 PM EST
    the final ballot title is. The petitioners want a less expansive ballot title than the one recommended by the state AG's office. Ballot titles include info explain just what a "yes" or a"no" vote will mean in terms of what will change.

    The AG title informs voters that, in addition to banning all abortions, the measure would ban certain forms of contraception, ban stem cell research and treatment, nullify our Death with Dignity law, and make illegal some end of life care options that people currently get to make.

    Oregonians have affirmed the Death with Dignity law twice in statewide ballot initiatives. We are quite committed to having that choice. And the ban on one types of birth control make it harder to win passage. But, anything can happen.

    The ballot title stakes are very important. Prior to every ingle election, before ballots go out in the mail, every voter in the state receives a Voters' Pamphlet from the Secretary of State's office. This pamphlet explains every ballot initiative, and that explanation is based on the ballot title. The pamphlet includes writings submitted by both supporters and opponents, but the ballot title is what people read first. And that title also appears in the actual ballot.

    The 2012 election could be ugly. A number of counties have double digit unemployment. People are very unhappy. And the GOP is feeling energized by the unhappiness with Obama. Also, the whole David Wu debacle as a big shot in the arm to the GOP. That special election will be held in January. We are bracing for an avalanche of outside $$$ for that race.

    My hope is that the supporters fail to get enough signatures to put it on the ballot. Probably wishful thinking.


    Thank you for the Oregon run down (none / 0) (#19)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 11:07:27 AM EST
    Greatly appreciated

    Congratulations Mississippi! (none / 0) (#4)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 08:19:22 AM EST

    Just maybe (none / 0) (#6)
    by the capstan on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:57:09 AM EST
    there's an embedded memory of the misery involved in having families of ten and more children.  (And now there is no advantage in having all those extra hands--and mouths--to work the fields.)

    I just don't know how you can legislate (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:18:21 AM EST
    such a thing?  Most of us feel and love, we fully understand the choices at hand.  How can risking the life of someone who already has other children to raise ever be a good thing?  After the age of seven I grew up motherless.  It shouldn't happen to anyone, but it does.  For legislation to increase the chances of that happening to someone who is already here, already needing love and attention and protection, it's pretty heinous.  Nobody loves you like your mother.  Nobody ever will.  When she is gone, when she leaves you, nobody will ever replace her and your chances of having someone with the time and patience even want to is very very slim.  How can the people writing this legislation and pushing it have so little care or concern for mothers?

    They care only about the wedge it drives (5.00 / 4) (#10)
    by Mr Natural on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:20:27 AM EST
    between voters.

    How can they? (5.00 / 3) (#15)
    by christinep on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 02:51:05 PM EST
    MT: If some of the earlier CO supporters of that type of amendment display anything, it is a mindless ideology wherein anything justifies their goal. IMO.

    In the 1950s, when I was six years old, my mother died. My sister was two. My wonderful dad raised us with instinct guided by love. But, we all knew the hole of which you speak...the irreplaceable absence from that November those many years ago. I feel what you have expressed.


    On the other hand, if your goal is a nano-militia (none / 0) (#7)
    by Mr Natural on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:16:22 AM EST
    mindless reproduction is the key.

    Well at least the Duggars (none / 0) (#17)
    by Amiss on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 03:56:04 PM EST
    are limiting their children to 20 after the announcement of her latest pregnancy.

    The real problem with the personhood legislation (none / 0) (#9)
    by Mr Natural on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:19:31 AM EST
    is that millions of fertilized ova are spontaneously aborted every year by women's bodies rejecting misconfigurations and deformations and life processes gone awry - that only the woman's body can detect at that stage of development.

    Yes - I think women thought through (none / 0) (#12)
    by ruffian on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 12:19:46 PM EST
    the consequences of the state deeming that you are hurting a person by what you eat, what your physical activities are, etc.

    I'm glad there is some common sense in MS. Hope it extends to the other states.


    That, and (none / 0) (#13)
    by jbindc on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 01:09:01 PM EST
    The fact that the medical and scientific community (as well as decades of federal policy) does consider a woman "pregnant" at fertilization, but rather implantation of the fertilized egg into the uterine lining, which takes place, on average, about 14 days after fertilization.

    I suspect that (none / 0) (#11)
    by DFLer on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:31:58 AM EST
    this language: cloning or the equivalent thereof turned off many voters. Why was it there, anyway?