The Connecticut Catholic Public Affairs Conference strongly opposes SJR 42 " Resolution Proposing a State Constitutional Amendment Concerning a Right to Privacy."
Note: The General Administration and Elections Committee Passed out an Amended version of the legislation to include various personal sexual relationships. It is now awaiting action by the Senate. Watch for a future Action Alerts.
This opposition is reflective of the Catholic Church's long opposition to abortion. However, no matter what your position on abortion may be there are critical shortcomings with this legislation. I encourage you to review these shortcomings before casting your vote in committee. SJR 42 is an extreme, reckless and deceptive piece of legislation. This legislation is not needed in a state where abortion rights are already codified in our state law. Access to abortion is not a problem in Connecticut.
EXTREME: SJR 42 appears to allow abortion without any limitations. This goes against numerous polls that show most voters, including voters who consider themselves prochoice, do not support unlimited abortion during the nine months of pregnancy.
When abortion support drops: The further into the pregnancy, an Associated Press/NORC poll found that 61% believe abortion should be legal during the first trimester, but only 34% in the second trimester and 19% in the third, and an April Wall Street Journal poll finding more Americans approve of 15-week abortion bans than disapprove.
RECKLESS: SJR 42 raises many legal concerns that could create an unintended large number of court cases based on the creation of the new constitutional "right of individual privacy". The wrapping of the right to an abortion, within a new constitutional right to privacy, will raise many legal questions that will eventually have to answered by the courts. It will be a bonanza for trial lawyers in the areas of both civil and criminal law and procedures..
DECEPTIVE: SJR 42 is deceptive in nature. The title of the resolution does not reflect the true underlying intent of the legislation, which is to protect the unlimited right to abortion. The most deceptive part of the resolution is the recommended question on the ballot. The ballot question mentions the right to privacy and does not make any reference to the special status reproductive rights receive in the legislation. Even more offensive is that this deception is aimed at the voting public in an effort to get the amendment to the State Constitution passed should it go to referendum.
Two years ago many legislators, including supporters of this legislation, spoke out against pro-life pregnancy care centers about their practice of deceptive advertising. Although no actual cases of deceptive advertising were presented, the General Assembly passed a deceptive advertising law related to these centers. How hypocritical it is for these very same legislators to propose a piece of legislation which is blatantly deceptive to the voters of our state.