Personhood Initiative Fails To Get On Ballot

Secretary Of State Says Group Missed Target By Almost 4,000 Signatures

The so-called "personhood" amendment fell short of the number of signatures required to appear on the November ballot, the Secretary of State announced Wednesday.

Of the 106,119 signatures submitted on Aug. 6, the Secretary of State’s office says staff verified 82,246. A total of 86,000 verified signatures are required to appear on the ballot, so the proposed initiative fell 3,859 signatures short

Initiative 46, or the “Application of the Term of Person,” was supported by the Personhood Colorado group.

Sec. of State Scott Gessler's office said signature checkers lost a section of the petition containing 20 signatures but counted them as valid anyway.

This is the first time supporters failed to get the proposal on the ballot on their first try. They can still try again to collect more signatures in order to win a place on the ballot.

Similar abortion bans on Colorado ballots in 2010 and 2008 elections failed. The measure has steadily lost momentum since 2008. Each year, fewer people have signed the petition to put the measure on the ballot, and Coloradans have voted against it by three-to-one margins.

“Let today be a signal to personhood supporters who return to Colorado year after year with anti-woman, anti-family, anti-patient privacy ballot proposals, Coloradans have said ‘no’ to intrusion into our personal, private medical decisions and we mean it," said Vicki Cowart, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains. She also spoke on behalf of the NO Personhood Campaign.

The proposal would also ban embryonic stem-cell research and some fertility treatments.

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