Florida abortion amendment would aid ‘unscrupulous’ providers, Catholic doctor says

SabolChristieENN Florida Dr. Grazie Pozo Christie speaks to “EWTN News Nightly” host Tracy Sabol on Florida’s proposed abortion amendment Feb. 6, 2024. | Credit: “EWTN News Nightly”

A proposed amendment to the Florida Constitution at dispute before the state Supreme Court would give “unscrupulous” abortion providers free rein over vulnerable women in the state, a Florida doctor told EWTN this week. 

The pro-abortion group Floridians Protecting Freedom (FPF) filed a proposed constitutional amendment with the Florida secretary of state in May that would enshrine abortion rights in the state constitution. If approved by the court, the measure would appear on the November ballot.

The proposed amendment would prohibit the state from passing any laws to “prohibit, penalize, delay, or restrict abortion before viability.”

The Florida attorney general last year asked the state Supreme Court to block the effort, claiming in part that it did not meet the state’s legal requirements for “clear and unambiguous language.” The case was heard by the state Supreme Court this week.

Ahead of those oral arguments, Dr. Grazie Pozo Christie — a senior fellow for the Catholic Association and host of EWTN’s radio show “Conversations with Consequences” — told “EWTN News Nightly” that the measure, if passed, would “deny women all sorts of protections that they have against unscrupulous and bad actors out there in the abortion landscape.”

The amendment specifically states that abortion shall always be allowed “to protect the patient’s health, as determined by the patient’s health care provider.” Christie pointed out to “EWTN News Nightly” host Tracy Sabol that the amendment’s language is “very vague.”

“The word health is not defined, and neither is the word health provider. There’s a lot of gray space in there,” she said. 

Christie said the amendment, if passed, would “immediately take away any kind of commonsense safety regulation around abortion.” 

“According to this ballot amendment, anybody could perform an abortion,” she said. “For instance, a girl could go to a Planned Parenthood office and be given the chemical abortion pill or a prescription for the pill by the receptionist. So there is no clinical oversight at all over something that is a very dangerous [procedure].”

Christie argued that the law “opens up every single possibility and doesn't give women any protections.”

“The regular legislative way in which we as a state decide what kinds of regulations we want around abortion — that’s the proper way to give people a way to decide,” she said. “Not to just open the floodgates to every unscrupulous big abortion provider [who] will come rushing to Florida to hurt not only babies but women and girls.”

During oral arguments this week, the state renewed its push to keep the proposed amendment off the ballot in November, though at least one of the justices was skeptical of the state’s argument that the ballot measure was too complicated. 

“The people of Florida aren’t stupid — they can figure things out,” Chief Justice Carlos Muñiz said of the amendment. “People can see for themselves whether it’s too broad or vague.”

Justice Renatha Francis, on the other hand, pressed attorney Courtney Brewer on the argument that the amendment would allow “abortion without restriction for the entire nine months of pregnancy.”

“[I]sn’t that the job of the proposed amendment, to make sure that they are communicating the chief purpose and the effect of what it is this proposed amendment would actually do?” Francis asked. 

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