HELENA, Mont. (AP) — The Montana legislature is considering a proposal that would interpret the state’s constitutional right to privacy to mean that it does not protect the right to an abortion, a move that would echo others in several states to severely restrict or ban abortion.
Sen. Keith Regier, the proposal's sponsor, argued during a committee hearing Tuesday that the phrase “individual privacy” in the state Constitution should also refer to unborn babies that are individuals who have rights that should not be infringed upon.
State efforts to regulate abortion became more urgent after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in June — in the Dobbs v. Jackson case — to leave abortion rights up to the states. The ruling overturned the 1973 decision in the Roe v. Wade case that found the due process clause of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provided a privacy right that protected the right to an abortion.