The Protect Life Amendment has a language problem

Protect Life Amendment languageThe Iowa House and Senate both support the Protect Life Amendment. But they don’t agree on the language of the Amendment. Let’s compare:

Iowa Senate’s Language

Sec. 26. Protection of life. To defend the dignity of all human life, and to protect mothers and unborn children from efforts to expand abortion even to the day of birth, we the people of the State of Iowa declare that this Constitution shall not be construed to recognize, grant, or secure a right to abortion or to require the public funding of abortion.

Iowa House Language

Sec. 26. To defend and protect unborn children, we the people of the State of Iowa declare that this Constitution does not recognize, grant, or secure a right to abortion or require the public funding thereof.

Iowans for LIFE along with all of our fellow members of the Iowa Coalition of Pro-Life Leaders supports the Iowa Senate’s language for specific reasons:

1. Tested language. The Senate language was poll-tested and significantly out-polled the language used by the House. This is important: once the amendment passes in two legislative sessions, Iowa voters must approve it with a majority vote. The Senate language is a winner according to extensive polling; the House language is iffy at best.

2. The House stripped the language on late term abortions.  According to  Gallup Polls going back to 1996 right up to today, Americans overwhelmingly oppose late term abortion. As of 2018, 81% of  Americans said it should be illegal. The house stripped our biggest selling point to Iowans by removing the words, “even to the day of birth,” weakening our ability to get Iowa voters to support the amendment.

3. The house version stripped the title of the bill.  If you look at our Iowa constitution, you’ll note that it is filled with titles. Titles help people find things. When it comes to selling this to the people, they’ll want to know what this amendment is about.  Here’s the risk: If we pass it with no title, a state worker will come up with his own when he goes to enter it into the record. What if he titles it something like the “abortion neutral amendment?” That title polled the worst. The “Protect Life Amendment” polled the best. WE should select the title and not leave it up to the whims of a faceless bureaucracy.

The Senate language is superior in every respect, according to IFL Executive Director, Maggie DeWitte:

Maggie DeWitte

IFL Executive Director, Maggie DeWitte

“We need to encourage our Representatives to move forward with the Senate’s version of The Protect Life Amendment.  This is the best poll tested language.  As you know, in order to pass this amendment, we have to go through one more legislative session and then a vote before the people of Iowa.  We have to be forward thinking to this vote and pass language that has the best chance of getting the vote of the people of Iowa.”

What you should do now

Iowans for LIFE encourages you to contact House Republicans and encourage them to support the Senate’s language of The Protect Life Amendment.

[Iowans for LIFE is hard at work on our next project, The Holy Family. We need your support now to fund this exciting undertaking. Donate today.]


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