Personhood Legislation

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Personhood Bills and Ballot Initiatives


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RESOLVE opposes all Personhood initiatives and urges all Americans to VOTE AGAINST any anti-family legislation as it undermines access to safe and reliable infertility medical treatments. Click here to read RESOLVE’s Policy Statement on Personhood legislation, which includes a full explanation of how Personhood legislation and/or Amendments will impact people with infertility.

What is the difference between a Bill and a Ballot Initiative? 

A ballot initiative is an attempt to get an issue in front of voters in a state. A Personhood Ballot Initiative would be an attempt to have voters in a state pass a Personhood Amendment or Initiative that would change a state constitution or amend state statutes defining when life begins. Each state has its own process for how any initiative gets on a ballot in November. At its core, a ballot initiative is taking a particular issue to the general public and letting them decide.  In 2014, North Dakota will have a Personhood ballot initiative that North Dakota residents will vote for or against on November 4, 2014.

A Personhood bill is a bill introduced in the state legislature, either in the House or Senate or both, and must proceed along a specific process to get a final vote in the full House and Senate. The bill would then need to be signed into law by the Governor. A bill would only be voted on by the elected officials in a state and would not be open to public vote.

Personhood Bills and Ballots have been introduced in the following states. Here is the status of each of these legislative initiatives in each state:

Colorado  South Carolina  
North Dakota    
Oklahoma    

 State: Oklahoma Bill Number: HB 2070
Updated: August 25, 2014

  • Short Description of Bill: A so-called "personhood" ballot to give legal rights to newly fertilized microscopic embryos (i.e., when life begins).
  • Does RESOLVE support or oppose this Bill: RESOLVE opposes this bill.
  • Current status of the Bill in the legislative process: The bill died in Senate committee after passing the Oklahoma House.
  • Link to Bill: HB 2070

 State: South Carolina Bill Number: HB3323 
Updated: August 25, 2014

State: South Carolina Bill Number: S 83
Updated: August 25, 2014

  • Short Description of Bill: A so-called "personhood" bill to give legal rights to newly fertilized microscopic embryos (i.e., when life begins).
  • Does RESOLVE support or oppose this Bill: RESOLVE opposes this bill.
  • Current status of the Bill in the legislative process: The bill died in the Judiciary committee.
  • Link to Bill: S 83
  • Read RESOLVE’s Personhood Policy
  • Read RESOLVE's letter that opposes this bill.

State: South Carolina Bill Number: S 457
Updated: August 25, 2014

  • Short Description of Bill: A so-called "personhood" ballot to give legal rights to newly fertilized microscopic embryos (i.e., when life begins).
  • Does RESOLVE support or oppose this Bill: RESOLVE opposes this bill.
  • Current status of the Bill in the legislative process: The bill died in the Judiciary committee.
  • Link to Bill: S 457
  • Read RESOLVE’s Personhood Policy
  • Read RESOLVE's letter that opposes this bill.


 Ballot Initiatives

Colorado Amendment 67
Updated: August 28, 2014

On November 4, 2014, residents of Colorado will go to the polls and vote for or against Amendment 67, a Personhood ballot initiative. This will be the third attempt (2008 and 2010) that Colorado has tried to pass a Personhood amendment.  RESOLVE opposes all Personhood attempt and urges Coloradans to vote NO on Amendment 67. Colorado residents are urged to get involved in the campaign to defeat Amendment 67. Please visit www.VoteNo67.com for more information and to get involved.

North Dakota Measure 1
Updated: August 28, 2014

On November 4, 2014, North Dakotans will go to the polls and vote for or against Measure 1, a Personhood ballot initiative. If passed, it will amend the North Dakota State Constitution to protect “every human being at any stage of development”, which protects a fertilized egg. Declaring a fertilized egg a person can make the treatment of infertility difficult and puts the standard of care for medical treatment such as IVF in jeopardy.  RESOLVE opposes all Personhood attempts and urges North Dakotans to vote NO against Measure 1. To find out more and to get involved, contact www.ndam1.org. For additional information visit www.ndforprivacy.com.