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Anti-abortion Petition Falls Short in Michigan

RIGHT TO LIFE OF MICHIGAN dropped a petition drive to prohibit a second-trimester procedure after state election officials said the campaign didn’t produce enough valid signatures.

Abortion opponents sought to outlaw the dilation and evacuation procedure in most instances. Abortion-rights advocates say the procedure is safe, and doctors should not face prosecution for using it.

At least 340,047 valid signatures are required under Michigan law to send an initiative to the legislature. If lawmakers reject the measure, it goes onto the statewide ballot for voters to decide. The abortion oppo- nents fell just short in this case. Although they submitted roughly 380,000 signatures, the Elections Bureau estimated that approximately 333,000 of those were valid.

The dilation and evacuation procedure was used in 2,076, or 7.6 percent, of abortions in Michigan last year. It accounted for more than half of all second-trimester abortions, including 84 percent that were performed after the 16th week of pregnancy.

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