Abortion Advocates Seek To Make Abortion a Constitutional Right in Maryland

By 

Olivia Summers

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February 21

4 min read

Pro Life

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Words matter, and abortion advocates know this very well – which is why they do everything they can to avoid the actual use of the word “abortion.”

Right now, the House Government Operations Committee in Maryland is set to hear testimony on House Bill (HB) 1171, entitled “Declaration of Rights – Right to Reproductive Liberty.” This bill proposes an amendment to the Maryland Constitution to create a “right to reproductive freedom,” otherwise known as “abortion.”

To be clear, what makes this bill even worse than most is that even if the U.S. Supreme Court were to overturn Roe v. Wade, this bill would allow Maryland to permanently entrench Roe in its state constitution, and even worse than Roe, make abortion a permanent right and strike down numerous pro-life state laws in Maryland.

It’s sickening how abortion advocates use terms such as “liberty” and “freedom” in the context of killing babies. We can’t let them get away with it or their attempt to expand abortion, which is why we just submitted written testimony to the Maryland state legislature on behalf of nearly 400,000 of our members, including over 6,000 of our members in Maryland alone, to oppose the bill. In our testimony, we call abortion advocates out on their cowardly use of euphemistic terms:

Abortion advocates have a long history of using euphemisms in an attempt to disguise the horrific nature of the act that they support and promote – namely, the killing of innocent, preborn, human beings. Since the Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113, 154 (1973), in which the Court purported to find a constitutional “right” to abortion under the scope of “privacy,” words such as “privacy” and “freedom” when combined with “reproductive” have become synonymous with “abortion.” (“We, therefore, conclude that the right of personal privacy includes the abortion decision.”) House Bill 1171 is yet another in a long line of bills to use euphemistic terms, in this case “liberty” and “equality,” in an attempt to sell Maryland citizens on a bill that completely strips a certain section of human beings – preborn babies – of all dignity and human rights.

While abortion laws in Maryland are already some of the most extreme in the United States, the proposed state constitutional amendment would do far more than just expand abortion. As we point out in our testimony:

[T]he bill would eliminate the ability of Maryland citizens to enact their opposition to state funding of abortion, adopt laws that protect life and promote and elevate human rights and dignity, and legislate protections for those with conscientious objections to participating in abortion.

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An abortion amendment would invalidate state abortion restrictions that are supported by the majority of the public, including the following common sense, protective laws: partial-birth abortion bans; infanticide bans; bans on selective abortion based on gender or disability; parental notification; informed consent; and many more. House Bill 1171 contains no saving provisions for already existing laws.

We’re also preparing to present oral testimony further opposing the bill tomorrow. Pro-abortion committees leaders in Maryland are notorious for preventing testimony they don’t want to hear, however. So, we’re calling on you to take action as well. Let the members of the House Government Operations Committee know that you oppose House Bill 1171, and support the right to life of innocent human beings!

It's critical that H.B. 1171 fails. The lives of many babies, and even women, depend upon it.

UPDATE 3.3.2022: The Maryland House Government Operations Committee is now set to vote on H.B. 1171 tomorrow – Friday, March 4. If H.B. 1171 survives the Committee vote and makes it to a full vote, the abortion advocates unfortunately have the votes to pass it. If this happens, then whether Roe v. Wade becomes enshrined in the state constitution becomes a ballot issue for Maryland voters. H.B. 1171 should never get that far. As we testified last week – if H.B. 1171 becomes law, it will have detrimental effects on protections for innocent human life. Moreover, it will force Maryland taxpayers against their will to fund abortion. If you haven’t already, take action by informing the HGO Committee members that you oppose H.B. 1171, and they should too!