Florida's Supreme Court decides on setback for abortion rights, while approving for ballot initiative

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Editor : Yağız Efe Parmaksız
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Florida's Supreme Court reduces abortion access to six weeks for November election while giving the voters initiative to vote for pro-choice amendment

Florida's Supreme Court decides on setback for abortion rights, while approving for ballot initiative

Florida's Supreme Court made a crucial decision on Monday, dealing a major setback to abortion rights while also approving a controversial ballot initiative for the upcoming November election. 

In Florida, abortion is currently allowed up to 15 weeks of pregnancy under the legislation. However, a new Republican-backed law dramatically reduces the status quo timeframe to just six weeks.

The conservative-leaning state supreme court considered the legality of these abortion restrictions in conjunction with Amendment 4, the proposed amendment to protect the right of abortion in the Florida constitution.

The proposed amendment states that abortion cannot be prohibited, penalized, delayed, or restricted in a part "No law shall prohibit, penalize, delay, or restrict abortion before viability or when necessary to protect the patient's health, as determined by the patient's health care provider." The 'viability' mentioned is usually considered to be around 24 weeks, referring to the stage at which a fetus is capable of surviving outside the womb.

For the proposed amendment to be approved, a minimum of 60 percent of Florida voters must vote in favor of the article. Amendment 4, led by the Floridians Protecting Freedom campaign, aims to give voters the ability to make their own choices in this polarized matter.

Lauren Brenzel, the campaign director, shared her excitement about the possibility of voters regaining control over their bodily autonomy, adding that the Florida enactments restricting the abortion laws first to 15 and then to a 6-week timeframe are "unpopular and harmful policies."

Florida's Republican Attorney General Ashley Moody had strongly encouraged the State Supreme Court, in which five out of eight justices appointed by Republican Governor Ron DeSantis, to decline the amendment's inclusion on the ballot.

Source: AFP

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