The Attorney General of Florida is attempting to usurp the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists’ (ACOG) guidance to keep the abortion ballot initiative from Florida voters.
A group called Floridians Protecting Freedom has gathered nearly 500,000 of the 891,523 voter signatures needed ahead of a Feb. 1 deadline for signatures to put a proposed ballot measure on the 2024 ballot that would expand abortion rights in the state.
Florida’s Attorney General Ashley Moody has asked the state Supreme Court to keep the proposed abortion rights amendment off the ballot and misused the expertise of medical professionals in her attempt to do so. In her efforts to push back against the initiative, including in an op-ed in the Florida Voice News, Moody misrepresented guidance issued by ACOG to support her arguments.
ACOG’s publication, “Facts Are Important: Understanding and Navigating Viability,” was developed after the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health dramatically changed the landscape of abortion access. The document reflects ACOG’s longstanding conclusion, backed by decades of research, that political interference into the practice of medicine is harmful to people and communities.
The state Supreme Court is tasked with ensuring the ballot language isn’t misleading if it goes before voters.
ACOG urges the court to reject the Attorney General’s use of medical guidance in a way that is inconsistent with that guidance.
Democracy Forward and the law firm Swope, Rodante P.A. filed an amicus brief on behalf of ACOG in the Florida Supreme Court in order to correct the record on the Florida AG’s misleading claims.
The majority of Americans – and Floridians – believe we should all have the freedom to make our own personal health care decisions without interference from politicians. The Florida AG’s intentional misuse of ACOG’s expert medical guidance to justify her office’s opposition to the abortion ballot initiative is a prime example of why such interference is harmful and potentially dangerous.
This brief from medical experts asks the Florida Supreme Court to see right through this effort to silence Florida voters’ voices and undermine the democratic process.