Michael Pauley is joined by Jon Hansen for a discussion of a proposed amendment that would create a right to abortion in the South Dakota state constitution. Hansen is the Speaker Pro Tempore of the South Dakota House of Representatives and also serves as Vice President of South Dakota Right to Life. Hansen and Pauley discuss the implications of the proposed constitutional amendment, which would be placed on the ballot for the November 5, 2024 election, if sponsors are able to gather the legally required number of signatures. Supporters of the amendment describe it as an initiative to put Roe v. Wade into the state constitution, but Hansen explains the amendment would impose a legal regime of unrestricted abortion-on-demand that is far more radical than the policy under Roe.
South Dakota’s 2023 legislative session marked the first time that state lawmakers had gathered since the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its June 24, 2022 decision in the case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which overturned Roe v. Wade and restored to the states the ability to set their own public policy on abortion. Host Michael Pauley is joined by Dale Bartscher, the Executive Director of South Dakota Right to Life, for a discussion on how state lawmakers responded to the Dobbs decision, and how South Dakota’s pro-life community is responding to a citizen-initiated amendment that proposes to create an unlimited right to abortion in the state constitution.