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Louisiana voters approve Amendment 1: No right to abortion in Constitution

Published: Nov. 6, 2020 at 5:21 AM CST
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LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - Louisiana voters approved Amendment 1 making it clear abortion rights won’t be protected in the state constitution.

Seventy percent of voters in Calcasieu Parish voted in favor of Amendment 1 while sixty-two percent of all Louisiana voters also approved of the amendment.

“Amendment 1 ensures that state judges can never find or force a right to abortion or the tax payer funding of abortion in our state constitution," Executive Director of Louisiana Right to Life Ben Clapper said.

The amendment states nothing in the state’s constitution shall be construed to secure or protect a right to abortion of funding of abortion. But what exactly does this mean?

“Abortion may be still legal today in Louisiana but what this makes sure is that the issue of abortion and the policy decisions that could come in the future about abortion reside in the hands of the people through our legislatures and not our judges,” he said.

Clapper said the passing of Amendment 1 is a win for pro-life advocates. But pro-choice advocates like David Schmit with Lift Louisiana said it’s important to know abortion is still legal in Louisiana.

“Amendment 1 has not changed that at all and there are three clinics that are open and providing abortion services in the state," Schmit said.

Schmit said if the U.S. Supreme Court were to overturn Roe v. Wade, which constitutionally protects abortion services, then Amendment 1 comes into play.

“Then there’s already a trigger law in Louisiana in which case abortion would be banned in the state," he said.

While more than half of Louisiana voters voted in favor of Amendment 1, Schmit points out over 778,000 voters in the state voted against the amendment.

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