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Oklahoma voters could decide on abortion access under proposed ballot initiative

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State Question 828, if it ends up on the ballot, would amend the state’s constitution to create new protections for pregnant residents and the people who provide their care.

Oklahomans could get the opportunity to vote for abortion access in the state. A ballot initiative is in the works, and it crossed an important threshold this week.

Organizers filed the paperwork for the initiative late last month. State Question 828, if it ends up on the ballot, would amend the state’s constitution to create new protections for pregnant residents and the people who provide their care. Among other things, it would protect Oklahomans’ right to an abortion up to fetal viability, and afterward if a medical practitioner deems it necessary.

After the paperwork was filed, opponents had a set period of time to challenge the question in court. Usually, if an opponent files a challenge, they accuse organizers of a procedural problem like misleading language.

Rep. Mickey Dollens, a Democratic lawmaker who supports the initiative, says no challenges have been filed, so now the Secretary of State will decide when proponents can begin collecting signatures.

Once that date has been set, organizers will need to collect nearly 173,000 signatures within a period of 90 days.

StateImpact Oklahoma is a partnership of Oklahoma’s public radio stations which relies on contributions from readers and listeners to fulfill its mission of public service to Oklahoma and beyond. Donate online.

Catherine Sweeney grew up in Muskogee, Oklahoma, and attended Oklahoma State University. She has covered local, state and federal government for outlets in Oklahoma, Colorado and Washington, D.C.
StateImpact Oklahoma reports on education, health, environment, and the intersection of government and everyday Oklahomans. It's a reporting project and collaboration of KGOU, KOSU, KWGS and KCCU, with broadcasts heard on NPR Member stations.
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