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Key dates, challenges... Understanding everything about the project to include abortion in the Constitution


Wednesday, February 1, the Senate said it was in favor of the inclusion in the Constitution of the "freedom" to resort to abortion. Behind this adoption, the historic decision of the Supreme Court of the United States, last summer, to revoke the right to abortion.

An important step for women's rights.

The Senate, with a majority on the right, voted Wednesday, February 1 by 166 votes against 152 in favor of the inclusion in the Constitution of the "freedom of women" to resort to voluntary termination of pregnancy (IVG).

This formulation abandons the notion of "right", demanded by the left, but allows the parliamentary shuttle to continue.

Indeed, the project has been on the table for several months now.

In the background, the historic decision of the Supreme Court of the United States, last summer, to revoke the right to abortion.

Update on the timeline.

In video, "I myself had an abortion": MP Clémentine Autain testifies to her abortion

Summer 2022: abortion under threat in the United States

Nothing can ever be taken for granted when it comes to the right of women to dispose of their bodies.

And the Americans learned it the hard way last summer.

The Supreme Court returned on June 24 to its “Roe vs.

Wade” of 1973, which considered abortion a federally guaranteed right.

Since then, several states - the most conservative - have banned or restricted the use of abortion.

To the chagrin of feminists and women in the country.

At the same time, in Europe, women's rights have also been weakened.

While Malta still prohibits abortion, Poland in 2021 made abortion almost illegal by removing the possibility of resorting to it in the event of malformation of the fetus.

For its part, Hungary has in turn restricted this right since women wishing to have an abortion have been forced since September to listen to the heartbeat of the fetus.

For fear that the situation will degenerate one day in France, some have preferred to take the lead.

For them, the only bulwark is to enshrine the right to abortion in the 1958 Constitution.

Read alsoIn which countries in the world is abortion prohibited or threatened?

October 7, 2022: Mathilde Panot submits a constitutional bill

On the strength of this observation, the deputy La France Insoumise (LFI) Mathilde Panot and several of her colleagues tabled, on October 7, a text in which they demanded the inclusion of the right to abortion in the Constitution as a fundamental individual freedom. .

As well as the prohibition of the death penalty.

For parliamentarians, the challenge is multiple: to enshrine both the fundamental nature of this right and the need for it to be regulated by law.

But also, it is a question of including a principle of non-regression, which would lead to the unconstitutionality of any future attack.

October 19, 2022: the Senate rejects a first text by ecologist Mélanie Vogel

A few weeks later, in October, the Senate rejected by 139 votes "for" and 172 votes "against" a first proposal for a constitutional law brought this time by the ecologist Mélanie Vogel and co-signed by senators from seven of the eight Senate groups, with the exception of the Republicans (LR).

Verdict of the Senate Law Commission?

The inclusion of a constitutional right to abortion is not justified by the situation encountered in France.

24 November 2022: adoption at first reading by MEPs

On November 24, the National Assembly adopts, with modifications, the bill at first reading by 337 votes "for", 32 "against" and 18 abstentions.

The text is approved - after nearly five hours of exchanges on the subject marked by numerous invectives on all the benches of the Hemicycle and some LR amendments of obstruction - by most of the elected representatives of Nupes, of the presidential camp, and even the National Rally.

February 1, 2023: the Senate

says yes to the constitutionalization of abortion

At the end of a passionate debate, the senators adopted on Wednesday February 1 the constitutional bill promoted by LFI.

The text has however been rewritten, via an amendment by Senator LR Philippe Bas.

The latter proposes to supplement article 34 of the Constitution with the following formula: “The law determines the conditions under which the freedom of the woman to put an end to her pregnancy is exercised”.

A modification that no longer refers to the “right” to abortion initially present.

The socialist group immediately welcomed "a major step forward for women's rights", while the environmental group hailed "a historic victory".

However, the victory is half-hearted.

The left deplores the change in wording, while assuming to have acted "responsibly".

And for good reason: an outright rejection of the text by the Senate would have ended in its burial.

And now ?

The text, adopted in first reading by the senators, must now return to the National Assembly for lack of having been voted in the same terms.

If the deputies do validate the wording, the text can then be submitted to a referendum, even if everyone wants a government bill, which would avoid going to the polls.

As a reminder, in France, only two referendums resulted in changes to the Constitution: for the establishment of direct universal suffrage for the election of the president, in 1962, and for the end of the five-year term, in 2000.

Mathilde Panot, who defended the text at the Palais Bourbon, asked Elisabeth Borne on Thursday for a bill to "accelerate" the possible inclusion of the right to abortion in the Constitution by passing instead through a vote in Congress.

Case to follow.

In video, "I don't care what the Bible says": the cry of the heart of an American journalist on abortion

Source: lefigaro

All business articles on 2023-02-03

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