Since learning of the U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement, advocates for reproductive freedom have been discussing ways to use state legal, legislative, and political processes to defend and advance an individual’s right to abortion care. Each state is engaged in strategy and coalition meetings to identify how best to proceed with the increasing threats to criminalize abortion in our country.
So, let’s be clear about our history. Maryland codified the protections of Roe v. Wade into state law in 1991 and overturned its restrictive 1968 abortion ban. A 1992 ballot referendum – Question 6 – resulted in 62% of the state’s voters affirming the legal right to abortion.
We are feeling pressure from other states for Maryland to remain a safe haven for abortion care access. This is why Maryland must maintain its pro-choice majority in both chambers in its legislature. For this November’s general election, a large voter turnout is vital to protect choice in our state. A Democratic governor working with the speaker and the senate president would be the best team to explore whether a pursuing a constitutional amendment is the right move for Maryland.