With South Dakota on the verge of outlawing abortion, two influential Republicans in Michigan said their state should be the next to take up the cause.
Michigan Republican National Committeemen Chuck Yob and Holly Hughes yesterday encouraged pro-life Republicans to get behind an effort to amend the state’s constitution to define human life as beginning at the point of conception.
In an e-mail to supporters, Yob and Hughes wrote:
We need your help!
There is something you can do right away to help protect the lives of the unborn right here in Michigan.
The South Dakota state legislature has been working hard to define life as beginning at conception. Now it is our turn to carry the torch and bring this important effort to Michigan. We commend Mr. Cal Zastrow for his efforts in collecting signatures to amend the Michigan Constitution to read:
"The right to due process, whereby no person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law, guaranteed in Article 1 Section 17, and the right to equal protection of the law, guaranteed in Article 1, Section 2, vest at conception. A ‘person’ for the purposes of the Constitution and laws of the State of Michigan, exists from the moment of conception."
We are supporting his proposal and ask you to do the same.
Although not all pro-lifers agree with the tactics used in South Dakota—choosing an outright ban as opposed to gradually putting in place abortion restrictions—the effort created national headlines last week and renewed debate about the U.S. Supreme Court’s eventual hearing of a challenge to Roe v. Wade.
With two new members of the court—Chief Justice John Roberts and Associate Justice Sam Alito—having not yet decided an abortion case, it is unknown how they would vote on a direct challenge to Roe. The South Dakota law, assuming it is signed by Republican Gov. Mike Rounds, could provide that test.
Meanwhile, the two GOP heavyweights backing the Prenatal Protection Amendment don’t have much time to get the measure on this November’s ballot. Petitions with at least 317,000 valid signatures need to be turned in by July 10 to qualify for Election Day this November.
Another reason the amendment is important for Michigan Republicans: It’ll likely boost turnout (as the statewide marriage amendments have done) for high-profile races for governor (pitting Republican Dick DeVos vs. embattled Democrat incumbent Jennifer Granholm) and U.S. Senate (which will likely have Republican Oakland County Sheriff Mike Bouchard facing liberal Democrat Debbie Stabenow).