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UK law professor says outcome of amendment two vote paves the way for a State Supreme Court review

University of Kentucky
University of Kentucky Law Professor Joshua Douglas

A University of Kentucky law professor says the referendum results on the abortion-related amendment now assure the matter will come before the State Supreme Court. The amendment, which sought to include language stating there is no right to an abortion in Kentucky, failed by about 5 percentage points. UK Law Professor Josh Douglas said a yes victory would have gutted the challenge to Kentucky’s so called trigger law and the Court could have dismissed the lawsuit.

“It would be clear that the State Supreme Court would have had no power to recognize the right to abortion under the State Constitution. So, now this means that the hearing will move forward and the Supreme Court will determine whether the State Constitution encompasses a right to an abortion,” said Douglas.

Douglas anticipates the Commonwealth's highest court to rule on the matter by the end of the year. He said that’s based on the fact that the Court makeup will change with new members in January.

Douglas noted he’s not sure if a Court ruling will resolve the issue entirely.

“I don’t want to put a timeline on it, right. My prediction is the State Supreme Court will issue its ruling by the end of the year. But, we need to know more about what that ruling says before I can definitely say the issue will or will not be resolved,” said Douglas.

Douglas said currently the law that bans abortions is in effect. The UK law professor doesn’t anticipate any change in day-to-day practices regarding abortions until a ruling is issued.

Stu has been reporting for WEKU for more than 30 years.
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