California is projected to enshrine a person’s right to an abortion and to contraceptives into the state’s constitution.
The ballot measure would change the California state constitution to say that the state cannot interfere with an individual’s reproductive freedom. It would ensure that people have the right to choose whether to have an abortion and whether to use contraceptives.
The ballot proposition directly cited the overturning of Roe v. Wade by the U.S. Supreme Court earlier this year as a reason for bringing the measure up to a vote.
Abortions are permitted in California up until the point of viability, about 24 to 26 weeks into pregnancy. The state is largely pro-abortion, with 71 percent of voters saying earlier this year that they planned to vote “YES” on the ballot measure.
While the California state constitution guarantees a right to privacy, it does not specify what this guarantee includes, though the state Supreme Court in 1969 did rule that the right to privacy covered the right to make reproductive choices.
Because abortions access is already protected under state law, the ballot measure is not expected to have a fiscal impact on California. Abortions and contraceptives are currently covered under Medi-Cal, which provides healthcare to eligible, low-income Californians.