Ballot initiative would limit abortion
DENVER (AP) ” Organizers plan to ask Colorado voters this fall to ban abortions of fetuses that could survive outside the womb unless the woman is at risk of death or serious injury.
The proposal was developed by Denver lawyer Mike Lawrence and Tim Dore, executive director of the Colorado Catholic Conference.
The measure would make it a felony for a doctor to knowingly perform an abortion on a viable fetus or to conduct an abortion with “reckless disregard of whether the fetus is viable” outside the womb.
“It’s meant to have a mild effect,” Lawrence told The Denver Post in Friday’s editions. “It is not meant to prohibit women from access to abortion. It simply tells them, ‘If you’re going to have an abortion, do it in the first five months or so of pregnancy.”‘
The initiative would need about 68,000 valid signatures to get on the November ballot and meet other state requirements.
Abortion-rights groups voiced concerns over the impact the measure would have on doctors.
“We’re very concerned that under this initiative, a doctor could be convicted of a felony for acting in the best interests of her patient,” said Crystal Clinkenbeard, a spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains.
Dore said his involvement is personal and not part of his work with the Colorado Catholic Conference, the public-policy arm of the state’s three dioceses.