11.10.2022 – (PRESS STATEMENT) A Montana ballot initiative (LR-131)–which was strongly opposed by the Montana Medical Association and Montana Hospital Association–has been rejected by Montana voters. Designed to stigmatize abortion, the referendum was deceivingly named the “Montana Born-Alive Infant Protection Act”. It would have forced doctors to provide resuscitative care for newborns with a fatal prognosis, even when no amount of medical care would save them, and despite the wishes of parents.
Statement from the Center for Reproductive Rights:
“For decades, abortion has been positioned as the most partisan issue in the U.S. This election shows us that voters do not see abortion as a political issue, but as a fundamental liberty. People across the political spectrum voted to protect abortion rights Tuesday night. In every state where abortion was on the ballot, voters made it clear that they don’t want politicians controlling their bodies or lives. It was a decisive and urgent issue for voters in Montana, Kentucky, and across the U.S.”
Of the five states that voted on abortion-related ballot measures this election, all five voted in support of abortion rights. Voters in Kentucky, Michigan, California, and Vermont also voted to protect the right to abortion through ballot initiatives. The Center for Reproductive Rights’ interactive map shows the status of abortion access in each state.
About LR-131: This referendum requires aggressive treatment for newborns, including those with fatal prognoses, even when no amount of medical care will save them. Doctors and nurses would have faced felony charges, a $50,000 fine, and up to 20 years in prison if they did not take an infant away from its family to perform resuscitative treatment, regardless of the medical circumstances and the family’s wishes.
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