Monday March 1, 2010
State Residents Force Vote on Pro-Life Amendment in Baja California Sur
By Matthew Cullinan Hoffman, Latin America Correspondent
LA PAZ, BAJA CALIFORNIA SUR, March 1, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A group of almost 20,000 residents of the Mexican state of Baja California Sur has presented a new pro-life amendment to the state legislature for its approval, according to national news services.
The “citizen’s initiative” is the first in the history of Baja California Sur to qualify under the terms of the state constitution, which allows citizens to present legislative initiatives to the state congress if they are supported by the signatures of at least 0.1% of eligible voters.
The initiative reportedly exceeded that requirement several times over, with a total of 19,930 signatures.
“The State of Baja California Sur recognizes, protects, and guarantees the right to life of every human being, affirming that from the moment of fertilization he enters under the protection of the law, and is treated as one who has already been born for all corresponding legal effects, until his natural death,” the proposed amendment states.
It adds that “this disposition does not derogate the absolutory excuses that are already contemplated in the penal legislation,” which will leave intact the statues that exempt women from criminal penalties in certain cases, including rape, fetal deformity, and danger to the mother’s life.
Baja California Sur joins several other Mexican states that are examining pro-life amendments to their constitutions, including the Mexico, Sinaloa, Tlaxcala, Tabasco, and Tamulipas.
Seventeen of Mexico’s 31 states have already approved such amendments in the wake of the legalization of abortion on demand during the first 14 weeks of pregnancy in Mexico City, which took place in 2007.
However, it may be difficult to pass the amendment in Baja California Sur, a state dominated by the socialist Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD).
Although some PRD members at the state level support pro-life legislation, the national party apparatus is solidly against it, and recently issued a communication to its members at the state level urging them to oppose such initiatives.
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