Republicans Endorse Absurd ‘Personhood’ Measure

Colorado Republicans better hope the Secretary of State finds that the “personhood” supporters — those who want to define a fertilized egg as a person will full legal rights — don’t have enough signatures for the ballot, after all.

Personhood Colorado announced today:

Personhood Colorado, sponsors of the 2010 Personhood Amendment, today submitted 46,671 signatures to the Colorado Secretary of State’s office.

On March 4, the Colorado Secretary of State disclosed that 20.63% of the 79,648 signatures submitted by Personhood Colorado were invalid. As allowed by Colorado law, volunteers then had 15 days to replace the invalid signatures with new, valid voter signatures. That translated to over 1,000 signatures per day.

The Huffington Post also reports the story.

For a comprehensive explanation for why the measure is wrong in theory and horrifying in practice, see the paper on the 2008 version of the measure by Diana Hsieh and me. In brief, the measure if fully implemented would outlaw practically all abortions, even in cases of rape, incest, fetal deformity, and risk to the woman’s health; outlaw common forms of birth control including the pill; and outlaw most fertility treatments involving egg implantation.

Even more disturbing, many Colorado Republicans have endorsed the measure. I already knew that underdog candidate for governor, Dan Maes, endorsed it, though he seems confused by some of the measure’s implications.

Today I learned from the Christian Family Alliance of Colorado that Ken Buck — a strong challenger for U.S. Senate — and both Cory Gardner and Tom Lucero — who are trying to upset Betsy Markey in the Fourth Congressional — have also endorsed the measure.

I want to make something clear at the outset, just so no Republicans are surprised later on: I will vote against any candidate who endorses the monstrous “personhood” measure. That is, I will not abstain from voting, I will vote for the Democrat, as my strongest available statement.

Of course, there is still time for any candidate who has endorsed the measure to repent, confess the error of his or her ways, and articulate a position closer to sanity.

Did Republicans somehow fail to notice that the 2008 “personhood” measure got trounced, and overall voters responded negatively to the faith-based politics of the GOP?

Of course, 2010 is a new election cycle, and voters may be so utterly disgusted with the Democrats’ handling of the economy that they may vote Republican, regardless of what loons the GOP throws up.

Betsy Markey, for example, has said she plans to vote for the disgusting Democratic health bill, giving me the impression that she has already resigned to losing. (I’m not in Markey’s district, thankfully, so I won’t have to hold my nose and vote for her, assuming her opponents stick with their foolish endorsements of “personhood.”)

Likewise, I don’t think either Michael Bennet or Andrew Romanoff can keep the U.S. Senate seat for the Dems, regardless of who the opponent is. Those two are hard-left Denver Democrats, and they’ve had to run further left in the primary. Still, it could become a tough race, and “personhood” offers rich ground for effective attack ads. (So far as I can determine, Jane Norton, still the most likely candidate, has remained silent on the “personhood” issue.)

In the governor’s race, John Hickenlooper is avoiding a primary and trumpeting his pro-business sentiments and credentials. I think Hickenlooper will be pretty tough to beat. Like Norton, frontrunner Scott McInnis has (so far as I can tell) remained silent on “personhood,” but he has tried to toe the anti-abortion line, so the appearance of the “personhood” measure on the ballot could still hurt him significantly. If the measure indeed makes the ballot, voters will be continually reminded about the ultimate aims of the anti-abortion zealots and the severe harms their laws would impose.

Do I despise Democrats or Republicans more? As today’s political news illustrates, that depends entirely on which party I’m thinking of at a given moment.

Update: Welcome Denver Post readers.

For more information about the “personhood” measure in its 2010 form, please see the following two articles.

What Are the Implications of ‘Personhood?’

‘Christian Soldiers’ Seek Abortion Ban

1 thought on “Republicans Endorse Absurd ‘Personhood’ Measure”

  1. Comment by Scott Evans March 19, 2010 at 10:20 AM

    “Fertilized egg.” That’s hilarious. When is it no longer a fertilized egg, Ari Armstrong, or are you still a fertilized egg?

    Readers, in this article, interchange the word ‘personhood’ for ‘free the slaves’ and ‘fertilized egg’ for ‘blacks’ and it will reveal to you the parallel between today’s fight against abortion and yesteryear’s fight against slavery. The same could be accurately said about the fight against killing Jews in Germany. There is no middle ground. Today you either choose life or choose death just as when they either chose freedom or chose slavery or life or killing Jews.

    Oh, and when you wrote this measure would outlaw abortion for all those reasons you gave, you left one reason out. It would also outlaw all abortions for convenience, you know, like the compelling “I have a career to consider,” or, “I’m not ready for a baby right now,” etc. I just wanted to clarify that since you conveniently left it out of your article, Ari.

    Comment by Ari March 19, 2010 at 12:16 PM

    (For some reason my previous attempt to post a reply seems not to have gone through.)

    Scott’s comments further illustrate the insanity of the anti-abortion zealots.

    Quite obviously, a fertilized egg is not the equivalent, biologically or in terms of political rights, as a born infant or adult. The comparison between abortion and genocide is ridiculous, hyperbolic nonsense.

    I did not “leave out” the fact that the “personhood” measure would ban optional abortions; I stated it “would outlaw practically all abortions.” Women have the right to get an abortion for such reasons.

    Notably, as with every other advocate of the “personhood” measure, Scott has not even attempted to refute the arguments in the 2008 paper:

    When you’re ready to seriously engage the issues, Scott, please write back. Until then, please keep your pathetic rantings to yourself.

    Thanks, -Ari

    Comment by Steve March 24, 2010 at 3:51 PM

    Ari: thanks for your insights. I’m a life long traditional conservative Republican (“traditional” = fiscal conservative & social libertarian). You left something out in your point-on commentary about “personhood.” If the fertilized egg becomes a human at time of conception, would it not be logical to conclude that nothing can be done to prevent this “person” from coming into existence? If so, then all forms of artificial birth control, including condoms, would eventually be banned.

    The whole thing of personhood is yet another attempt by religious zealots to impose their dogma on all citizens. I referred to the 2008 proposal as the “lawyers full employment proposal.” That hasn’t changed. Steve B.

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