Senate GOP Proposes Constitutional Amendment on Abortion | News, Sports, Jobs
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Republican senators on Thursday defeated impassioned Democratic opposition to advance a proposal to add language to the Pennsylvania Constitution explicitly stating that the document does not guarantee any abortion rights or financing. abortion public.
The House Rules Committee crafted the set of proposed changes that would also require voters to show ID at polling stations and have gubernatorial candidates choose their own running mates. A vote of the entire Senate could take place on Friday.
Democratic Prosecution Leader Senator Jay Costa of Allegheny County said he views the abortion bill as “designed to prevent abortions in this Commonwealth” while the sponsor, Republican Senator Judy Ward of Blair, said it would simply give the legislature the power to determine abortion law.
The proposal was added to a set of constitutional amendments in a bill approved by the State House in December. Other amendments would allow lawmakers to disapprove regulations without facing a veto from a governor and the General Assembly to put in place a system for the auditor general to conduct election audits.
“Our abortion control law will remain in force,” said Ward, an opponent of abortion rights. “And this constitutional amendment will just go to the people and it gives us in the Legislative Assembly the ability to establish these rules and laws regarding abortion in this Commonwealth.”
Senator Katie Muth, D-Montgomery, swore that “Women and their allies will not tolerate this. It is a denial of our rights.
“I don’t need a single person in this room to tell me what to do with my body” said Mouth. “I do not know.”
The state constitution requires proposed amendments to be passed by both houses in a two-year legislative session and then announced to the public before the next fall election. In the second round that follows, these proposals must then pass through both chambers in the following two-year session. They would then go before voters as separate questions for the final say.
Amendments do not require the Governor’s endorsement.
During Thursday night’s debate, Costa accused Republicans of turning to the constitutional amendment process to avoid a veto from Gov. Tom Wolf, a Democrat.
The bill is in its first two-year session and therefore must be announced three months before the Nov. 8 election if the Republican majority is to present it to voters in the 2023-24 session that begins in January.