TO: Interested Parties
FROM: Cathy Alderman, Planned Parenthood Votes Colorado Vice President of Public Affairs
DATE: Friday, September 5, 2014
RE: Memo & Quote: The Facts About Abortion Ban on Colorado Ballot

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Last week, the Washington Post published a piece on Amendment 67, an extreme and dangerous measure on the Colorado ballot that would ban all abortion and could criminalize women and their doctors. While the article gives much needed attention to the nuances in the language, it does little to explain the real impact: this measure would put the government in between women and their doctors with dangerous consequences for women facing complex and often heartbreaking situations.

Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Action Fund is in Colorado speaking with voters about the importance of protecting women’s health this November and released the following statement on Amendment 67: “Despite what proponents of this bill may say, the intentions are clear: to ban abortion, including in the cases of rape, incest or when the woman’s life or health is in danger. Of course we all want to protect women, but Amendment 67 isn’t the way to do so. It goes too far. In fact, an outright abortion ban like this does not exist in any other state. Even if we disagree about abortion, it is best to let each woman make her own personal private decisions, in consultation with her family and her doctor, in accordance with her faith and values. That’s why our partners in Colorado have teamed up with a diverse coalition working on the ground for the Vote No 67 campaign to ensure voters know the high stakes for women’s health on the Colorado ballot this November.”

Amendment 67 is more insidious than previous so-called “personhood” initiatives, which have been defeated by Colorado voters two times by over 70 percent of the vote, because it is focused on making changes to the Colorado criminal code and Colorado wrongful death act to include the unborn. It is a “wolf in sheep’s clothing,” as Nanette Santoro, M.D., chair and professor at the University of Colorado OB/GYN Department summarized, because it “contains deliberately deceptive language designed to mislead Colorado voters” while its “ultimate goal is to criminalize abortion.”

Here are the facts that every voter needs to know:

1. Amendment 67 is misleading and has far-reaching consequences:
The measure expands the term “person” in Colorado laws to include “unborn human being,” which has no established legal or medical definition, is not defined in the amendment, and would apply at all stages of pregnancy, including from the moment of fertilization.

2. Amendment 67 goes too far:
The measure would outlaw all abortion, including in the cases of rape and incest, and could criminalize pregnant women and their doctors for any pregnancy that does not result in a live birth, regardless of the stage of pregnancy, including cases of miscarriage.

3. Amendment 67 puts the government in the middle of women’s personal private lives:
Not only would such a measure criminalize all abortion, it could also result in the denial of any method of contraception that someone believes is equivalent to an abortion, regardless of medical evidence to the contrary.

We’ve got a lot of work to do here in Colorado – and the rest of the country (politicians and elected officials included) is watching to see what happens. We know that when we take our issues to the voters, we win – and come out stronger – not news to anyone in Colorado.

You can learn more about the campaign at http://www.voteno67.com.

If you’re interested in speaking with a spokesperson about Amendment 67 and its dangerous impact on Colorado women and families, please contact me at 303-319-9155.

Best,
Cathy Alderman
Planned Parenthood Votes Colorado Vice President of Public Affairs