2024 Election, Mike Krause, Politics, Uncategorized

Over a million dollars raised in push to add abortion guarantee to the Colorado Constitution

DENVER–Proponents of a citizen-initiated ballot measure to place a guarantee of abortion access in Colorado’s state Constitution have spent over $440,000 just on signature gathering towards the effort, with the campaign reporting there’s plenty more where that came from.

According to the Jan. 16 contributions and expenditures filing with the Colorado Secretary of State, the issue committee pushing the measure–Coloradans for Protecting Reproductive Freedom–has raised $1,368,811 thus far, while spending just $578, 488, leaving over $790,000 in cash on hand, likely more than enough to ensure the question ends up in front of voters.

Currently numbered as Initiative 89, the measure would add a new section to the Colorado Constitution’s Bill of Rights (Article II) that reads: “The right to abortion is hereby recognized. Government shall not deny, impede, or discriminate against the exercise of that right, including prohibiting health insurance coverage for abortion.” The measure also repeals Colorado’s longstanding constitutional ban on public funding of abortions.

To put the issue on the 2024 state-wide ballot, proponents have until April 26 to turn in 124, 238 valid signatures from registered voters to the Secretary of State’s office.  As it’s a constitutional change, that total must include at least 2 percent of the voters from each of the 35 state senate districts, and must be approved by a super-majority 55 percent-plus-one at the ballot.

The lion’s share of the reported spending has gone to Fieldworks, a left-wing political advocacy group headquartered in Washington DC, which includes “consulting and professional services” ($90,000), petition printing ($9,750), and signature gathering ($444,290). Other outlays include a Missoula, Montana-based consultant listed as ‘campaign director” ($18,771) and Denver-based Siegel Long Public Affairs (7,500).

The single largest individual contribution by far is $500,000 from Lynn Shusterman of Tulsa, Oklahoma, the billionaire widow of oilman Charles Shusterman.  Trailing fairly far behind with $200,000 is Merle Chambers from Boulder, who also made her money in oil and gas, and in third place is progressive activist John Powers, also of Boulder, with $25,000.

In addition, a variety of institutional donors associated with abortion advocacy and left-wing causes have given heavily, including: Cobalt Advocates ($15,000), Cobalt Foundation ($345,000), New Era Foundation ($50,000), New Era Action fund ($25,000), and the Rose Community Foundation ($150,000).

Abortion is already widely and readily available in Colorado, to the point that the state has become an abortion-tourism destination. In 2022, prior to the US Supreme Court returning authority over abortion to the states, the Democrat-controlled Colorado legislature passed, and Governor Polis signed, the Reproductive Health Equity Act, which codified near-unresticted abortion access into state law.


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