GOP Plans Abortion Ballot Measure

By Beacon Staff

HELENA – Abortion opponents are putting forward a proposed ballot measure that would require parental notification for abortions being considered by girls under the age of 18 who are not legally emancipated minors.

The measure would allow lawmakers to put the question to voters in 2012, should the governor veto another measure advancing through the Republican-controlled Legislature that would simply make the change in law.

Supporters say the notification is needed to protect children by involving adults. Opponents argue it is an ill-conceived invasion of privacy.

A House committee listened to the debate again Friday, setting the stage for the panel to advance the proposed ballot measure to the floor in the coming days.

Both sides expect any parental notification law would ultimately reach the state Supreme Court under constitutional right-to-privacy challenges.

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