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A public hearing will be held tomorrow, Tuesday, Feb. 25 at the Iowa Capitol from 6-8 p.m. The hearing is in regard to House Joint Resolution 2004, a resolution proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the State of Iowa that nothing in the Constitution of Iowa shall be construed to recognize, grant or secure a right to abortion or require the public funding of abortion.

The hearing will be held in Room 103 of the Capitol.

Iowans For Life is asking supporters to attend.

“You are needed to counter the rabid abortion lobby with your prayers,” they said in an email to supporters. “Come early, because the STate Supreme Court chambers in the Iowa Capitol will be overflowing. We want the pro-life side well-represented.”

If you cannot attend but want to express your opinion, you can do so here.

The proposed amendment already passed the Iowa Senate.

In his closing remarks on the bill in the Senate, Sen. Jake Chapman (R-Adel) challenged the legislators opposed to simply either propose a constitutional amendment that does provide a fundamental right to an abortion and taxpayer funding of abortion or to just simply give power of amending the constitution to the court.

“You know, it’s remarkable. This court case that came before a district judge, our law was upheld. Why was it upheld? Because there was no constitutional right to an abortion. Prior to 2018, I heard no one going out there say women have a right to an abortion under Iowa’s Constitution. But now, because the courts made this new fundamental right, heaven forbid, Republicans are taking the right away. No, we’re restoring the right of the People to govern themselves. Not unelected judges.

Look, if you guys want to cede the power, the enumerated powers granted to us under Article 3 and Article 10 on how we amend the Constitution, then cede the power. Just cede it. Let’s write a new constitutional amendment to grant the Supreme Court to write any new fundamental right they want under Iowa’s Constitution. If you want a right to an abortion, if you truly believe that should be a constitutional right, any one of you, any one of us, 150, 50 here, 100 over in the House, can put forth a constitutional amendment. We can go through a painstaking process, it’s not an easy process. And we can put it to a vote of the People. But I’ve not seen one of you put forth a constitutional amendment to provide a right to an abortion, rather you’re going to rely on judicial activists to create new constitutional rights.

In fact, the two sections I referred to, Article 1 Section 6 and Section 9 became effective Sept. 3, 1857. Six months later, March 15, 1858, the General Assembly adopted a law making abortion a crime under all circumstances. Except unless the same shall be necessary to preserve the life of such woman. Abortion remained generally illegal in Iowa until Roe v. Wade was decided. Given this timing, the fact that a ban on abortion was adopted right after the Constitution became effective, it is difficult to conceive that a legislatively mandated waiting period for abortion would have violated the original understanding of either Article 1 Section 6 or Article 1 Section 9. Six months later they pass a law banning all abortion. To say this is a living document and they had no consideration of abortion when they wrote Art 1 Sec 65 and Sec 9 is false. It’s not true.

“So here we are. We have an opportunity to right a wrong. The court we can allow them to use the power of the gavel to create new con rights. Or we can say, when it comes to this issue, the power will reside with the People. A no vote on this is to usurp the rights as we the People.

“Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Right there in the Declaration of Independence. Do we really think that it was any coincidence that they put it in that order? Without life, there is no liberty. Without life and liberty, there is no pursuit of happiness. It’s that simple.”

Jacob Hall

Author: Jacob Hall