Oklahoma "Egg-As-Person" Ballot Initiative Ruled Unconstitutional
Last week, the move to declare that a fertilized egg has the same rights as a living, breathing woman was blocked in the legislature as Oklahoma Republicans decided their re-election prospects mattered more to them than the support of the most extreme of the anti-choice activists in the state.
Now, the so called "person-hood" movement has received a second blow, with the announcement of the Oklahoma Supreme Court that their ballot initiative is unconstitutional and cannot be added to the November ballot.
The Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) filed suit against the proposed ballot amendment on behalf of medical professionals in the state concerned about how a potential amendment could effect their ability to practice sound medicine and best serve their patients. Nancy Northrup, president and CEO of CRR, hailed the decision:
In this case, the Oklahoma Constitution said it best: It is not acceptable to propose amendments that are ‘repugnant to the Constitution of the United States.This amendment would have run roughshod over the fundamental, constitutionally protected reproductive rights of all Oklahoma women. In affirming our request to strike it down, the court has struck a powerful blow against the repugnant tactics of those who seek to vote down the rights of others, and to enshrine their hostility to women’s lives, health, and rights in the laws of the land.
With no other venues left to advance a bill or amendment, the push to legally equate a fertilized egg with a person will likely now be shelved for the rest of the year.