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Special session on binding referendum ends in a blink

Another attempt to pave the way to possibly reverse the 1849 abortion ban in Wisconsin went quicker than you could listen to a radio commercial. 


In a matter of seconds, the Wisconsin State Assembly and Senate both gaveled in and out of the special session requested by Governor Tony Evers on Wednesday. The governor asked the Legislature to discuss a constitutional amendment that would have allowed Wisconsinites to change state law through referendum. The tactic was the governor’s latest attempt to bypass the Wisconsin Legislature to change the state’s controversial law on abortion after the Roe vs. Wade decision was reversed earlier this year.


According to Wisconsin Public Radio, Senator Ron Johnson suggested that the state’s voters should be able to say yes or no to abortion through a referendum, which is impossible under current state law. Only about half of the United States has such a rule on the books. Jay Heck from Common Cause Wisconsin says even though the people should have the right, it is likely something that will not come to fruition. 

Michigan, Missouri, and Ohio are the closest states to Wisconsin that have laws allowing voters to approve or veto laws through a referendum. Regarding Wednesday’s events, Republicans echoed what they have said after previous special sessions called by Governor Evers, calling it all a political stunt.   

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