Live stream: Michigan board considers adding abortion rights proposal to November ballot

Watch live at 9 a.m. Wednesday

LANSING, Mich. – The Michigan Board of State Canvassers is convening Wednesday morning to consider several matters -- among them, the decision whether to allow an abortion rights ballot proposal seeking to amend the state constitution to appear on the November ballot.

More than a month after submitting over 700,000 signatures in favor of amending the Michigan Constitution to allow abortion care, the Board of State Canvassers will decide if the ballot proposal will appear in front of Michigan voters this fall. The Reproductive Freedom for All ballot proposal -- backed by the Michigan ACLU, Planned Parenthood of Michigan and Michigan Voices -- was only required to submit 425,059 valid signatures to qualify to appear on the Nov. 8, 2022, ballot.

Watch the board’s meeting live at 9 a.m. Wednesday in the video player above. Our stream not working for you? Click here to access the state’s live stream.

The board’s meeting comes after the state’s Bureau of Elections reviewed signatures submitted under the Reproductive Freedom for All initiative, and recommended that the proposal be certified for the November election. Anti-abortion groups have been challenging the proposal in an effort to help disqualify it for the general election ballot.

The proposal seeks to amend the Michigan Constitution to affirm that “every person has the fundamental right to reproductive freedom, which involves the right to make and carry out decisions without political interference about all matters relating to pregnancy, including birth control, abortion, prenatal care, and childbirth.”

Following the recent overturning of the Supreme Court’s 1973 ruling in Roe v. Wade, which protected the right to abortion care nationwide for decades, individual states are now responsible for regulating abortion care within their jurisdiction. In Michigan, a 1931 law on the books bans nearly all abortion care in the state and declares such care felonious. However, several ongoing lawsuits in several Michigan courts have, for now, blocked enforcement of that ban.

If abortion care became legal under the Michigan Constitution, this law would supersede related prior court rulings -- a win for supporters who say the legal confusion surrounding abortion care rights in the state is having a significant negative impact on abortion care providers and patients.

Abortion lawsuits breakdown: Here’s what to know about the legal battles in Michigan

The Board of State Canvassers is also expected to consider Wednesday whether to add petition initiative Promote the Vote 2022 to the November ballot.

About the Author:

Cassidy Johncox is a senior digital news editor covering stories across the spectrum, with a special focus on politics and community issues.