MISSISSIPPI, November 9, 2011 ( – In a highly anticipated race last night, Mississippi’s Amendment 26 failed to garner sufficient votes to extend the definition of ‘person’ to every human being from the moment of fertilization. Voters rejected the amendment by a margin of 58 to 42 percent.

“Personhood USA understands that changing a culture – and changing a country – will not happen with one election, and so it is not unexpected. We thank the over one quarter of a million Mississippians who voted for Amendment 26,” said Keith Mason, president of Personhood USA, after the vote.

Personhood Mississippi had hoped that their efforts would work to erode the 38 year death grip that Roe v. Wade has held on human life in the womb through legalized abortion.

“Personhood is the key to all human rights,” Mason had said prior to the vote.

To put the amendment on last night’s ballot, Personhood Mississippi was required to collect and certify 89,285 signatures from registered voters. They exceeded that requirement by over 40,000 signatures.

The initiative was controversial even among pro-life leaders, some of whom were skeptical that the amendment would do any good for the pro-life cause, saying that it was not the right legislative vehicle to end abortion.

Personhood Mississippi, however, said they saw their initiative as a “pre-emptive strike” against The Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA), should the bill arise once more before Congress. The passage of FOCA would ensure that “every woman has the fundamental right to choose to bear a child; terminate a pregnancy prior to fetal viability; or terminate a pregnancy after viability when necessary to protect her life or her health,” they observed.

Despite not having achieved their goal, supporters of the Personhood Amendment expressed optimism last night thanks to all the pro-life awareness that the amendment had garnered.

“The educational value of all of this is priceless and I am so grateful to Mississippians who worked so hard on this and achieved so much in changing hearts about the unborn child,” said pro-life advocate Lisa Graas on Facebook.

With more than 300,000 Mississippians voting last night to recognize a baby in the womb as a person, the tide of the cultural war may be one step closer to turning in favor of the unborn child.