On Tuesday, 53 percent of voters in Tennessee approved Amendment 1, which gives the legislature power to enact, amend, or repeal abortion-related laws.
The new law doesn’t (and can’t) overturn Roe v. Wade, but it does make clear what the state is constitutionally authorized to do. The text of the amendment (emphasis added):
Nothing in this Constitution secures or protects a right to abortion or requires the funding of an abortion. The people retain the right through their elected state representatives and state senators to enact, amend, or repeal statutes regarding abortion, including, but not limited to, circumstances of pregnancy resulting from rape or incest or when necessary to save the life of the mother.
The U.S. Constitution does not contain a right of privacy for women to kill their unborn children, but seven of nine U.S. Supreme Court justices contorted logic and reasoning to come up with it. Abortion should never have been a national issue. According to the Tenth Amendment, powers not delegated to the federal government by the states or the Constitution are reserved for the states. Neither the founding document nor the states gave the federal government power to regulate abortion.
“Obviously for those of us who believe life is sacred, this was the necessary first step toward protection not only for the unborn but for women and girls who fall prey to people looking to profit from untimely or unexpected pregnancies,” Tennessee Right to Life president Brian Harris said.
Abortion advocates call the new law “dangerous.” Ashley Coffield of the local Planned Parenthood said the law “strips away the state’s established right to safe and legal abortion” and the pro-abortion crowd “will not stand for restrictions that serve only to create barriers to service.”
A Tennessee lawmaker is already backing bills that include a mandatory waiting period and counseling before women kill their babies, as well as inspection requirements.