What a “NO” Vote on California’s Abortion Amendment Would Mean

What a “NO” Vote on California’s Abortion Amendment Would Mean

Today, August 22, 2022, the California Senate will read AB 2223 for a third and final time before advancing the measure for a vote.  If passed — and there is no reason to believe it won’t — AB 2223 will eliminate California’s current Roe v. Wade era restrictions on abortion.

AB 2223 and Prop 1, the Abortion Amendment to the California constitution, share the same sweeping pro-abortion language declaring abortion to be a fundamental right.

AB 2223:                                                                           SCA 10, aka  “Prop 1”:

The state shall not deny or interfere with                             The state shall not deny or interfere with

the fundamental right of a pregnant individual                    an individual’s … fundamental right to choose 

or an individual who may become pregnant                               to have an abortion and their fundamental right 

to choose. . . to have and to obtain an abortion,                      to choose or refuse contraceptives.

except as specifically permitted by this article.


AB 2223 actually goes much further than Prop 1.

AB 2223 changes current law to create an unlimited statutory right to abortion from conception through delivery and beyond into the first month after birth.  It does this with the language “perinatal death due to causes that occurred in utero.” This phrase is vague and totally undefined. 


Recent reports by both Fox News and Live Action illustrate exactly what will be beyond the reach of California investigators once AB 2223 is law. In April, a 41 year old Nebraska mother bought abortion pills for her then 17 year old pregnant daughter.  The daughter took the pills, then gave birth to a viable 24 week old baby boy. After his birth, the mother and daughter stuffed the baby into a plastic bag, tried to burn the “evidence,” and then buried the baby’s burned, dead body.


Prop 1 will give Californians the chance to vote on the issue of abortion directly



If approved by voters in November, Prop 1 will not expand abortion. It won’t have to.  AB 2223, and many more abortion expansion bills, will already be in the books before Californians vote on Prop 1, making Prop 1 “more symbolic than anything else,” according to Erwin Chemerinsky, dean of UC Berkeley Law.


But Prop 1 may motivate pro-life turnout at polls. That has pro-abortion proponents worried. Cal Matters explained:

The state Legislature has made a huge mistake by giving anti-choice voters the chance to deny women’s reproductive rights covered by California’s Constitution for the past 50 years….If a slim majority of Californians vote “no” on the Right to Reproductive Freedom Amendment, the wider debate will begin: Does the existing 1972 Right to Privacy Amendment to the state Constitution actually include women’s reproductive freedom? 

The Legislature is making a mistake in letting voters decide.

The fight to defeat Prop 1 could galvanize pro-life forces in California in the wake of the Dobbs decision.  A strong turnout against Prop 1 could give pro-life candidates important tactical victories in gaining state offices and could also reinvigorate debate on other progressive issues.  A “NO” vote on Prop 1 would herald the dismantling of the California abortion cartel.
Susan Swift Arnall, Esq.

Civil Rights attorney for the Unborn, Wife and Mother of 7. Member California State Bar, SAG/AFTRA.