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[IN THE NEWS] The Dirty Tricks the GOP Is Using to Keep Abortion Off the Ballot in 2024 – Rolling Stone

Read the full story at Rolling Stone.

December 3, 2023

The same stories are playing out in battleground states and Republican-controlled states around the country. To get on the ballot in Arizona — a critical swing state in 2024 — canvassers must collect at least 370,000 valid signatures. But the rules are strict: if a single signature on a page of 15 is invalid, the entire page is thrown out. Anti-abortion activists have taken advantage of the rules to try to counteract the pro-choice organizers collection efforts. Amy Fitch-Heacock with Arizonans for Reproductive Freedom says she has witnessed protesters “take the petition, pretend that they are signing, but they will use false information: a fake name, fake address, or they will scribble and go outside of the lines” — setting canvassers back 15 signatures at a time.

The landscape, meanwhile, is dramatically different in Democrat-controlled states. In Maryland, advocates have experienced virtually no resistance whatsoever, and say they are aware of no organized opposition. “We’re expecting a disinformation campaign,” says Joanne Antoine, executive director of Common Cause Maryland. “But outside of that we’re not hearing anything at all.” 

It’s a similar story in Colorado, where a measure that would prohibit the government from denying or impeding the right to an abortion is poised to go before voters next year, a competing ballot measure that would have banned abortion in the state failed to pass procedural hurdles. “We have not really experienced any direct pushback,” says Dusti Gurule, CEO of Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity and Reproductive Rights. ”Our community supports not only [keeping abortion legal], but expanding access for those who need it. So, we’re in a really good place, and frankly, really excited to get the signatures and get on the ballot.”

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