Nebraska abortion advocates push petition at Taylor Swift themed-party – WOWT

OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) – On Friday night, The Waiting Room Lounge hosted its Taylor Swift-themed party Taylor Fest.
That’s not all the venue hosted though.
Protect Our Rights—a coalition of several groups, including the Nebraska ACLU, Planned Parenthood and Nebraska Civic Engagement Table—was on scene passing around its petition for a ballot initiative to put abortion rights to a vote of the people in November 2024.
Gretna resident Sara Lease signed it.
“I have three daughters and I want them to have access to all the healthcare they need if they choose to become pregnant,” Lease said. “If they don’t want to have a child, I don’t want them to have to carry that on because it’s extremely difficult.”
Omaha resident Lauren Whitney also signed.
“I think it’s important to protect a woman’s right to choose,” Whitney said.
The petition is in response to the recently passed law in Nebraska that bans abortions at 12 weeks.
Protect Our Rights made the petition available to sign in late November. Organizers decided the Taylor Swift event was a great place to get signatures.
“There are a ton of people who support abortion rights across the state, and a ton of them are Taylor Swift fans,” said Sandy Griffin, who is the data director for Nebraska Civic Engagement Table.
The petition states, “all persons shall have a fundamental right to abortion until fetal viability.” It defines fetal viability as, “the point in pregnancy when there is a significant likelihood of the fetus’s sustained survival outside the uterus without extraordinary measures.”
“That fetal viability line is really there to make sure that as many folks can get access to the abortion care that they need,” Griffin said.
However, petition opponents believe the language of what fetal viability means is too broad, encompassing the second and third trimesters.
Petition circulators feel state lawmakers will continue to come up with abortion restrictions, and they believe the ballot initiative they’re working toward is how to get ahead of that.
Their goal is to get 120,000 signatures statewide, and 5 percent of signatures in 38 counties by July.
Copyright 2024 WOWT. All rights reserved.

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