Monday, July 15, 2019
Secretary of State Ashcroft Continues to Deny Missourians’ Opportunity to Vote
Ashcroft should the referendum immediately and allow citizens to exercise their right to put Missouri’s extreme eight-week abortion ban to a vote of the people
MISSOURI — Today, the Missouri Supreme Court allowed Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft to continue running out the clock on citizens’ efforts to put Missouri’s extreme eight-week abortion ban to a vote of the people.
The Supreme Court let stand a prior ruling that found Ashcroft illegally blocked the referendum. Unfortunately, the Court did not require him to approve the referendum with enough time for Missourians to gather signatures to put House Bill 126 on the ballot. This means Ashcroft can continue to drag his feet and deny Missourians’ right to vote on this extreme ban on safe, legal abortion.
The ACLU of Missouri had asked the Supreme Court to require Ashcroft to act promptly and issue ballot language by July 18. While the Court did not order him to act, there is no legitimate reason Ashcroft cannot do his job and approve the referendum by July 18.
If Secretary Ashcroft issues ballot language by July 18th, he will have had 52 days to do his job, but Missourians will only have 41 to collect over 100,000 signatures. The Secretary is treading on the people’s time, using his office to silence the public and block their opportunity to vote.
Secretary Ashcroft is dragging his feet for one reason: He has joined the race to make Missouri the first state to ban safe, legal abortion. It’s clear that Missouri politicians are using every instrument of government to silence the voice of the people and deny them the opportunity to vote.