What is SB 106?

the anti-abortion amendment

SB 106 is a constitutional amendment that declares there is no right relating to abortion in the Pennsylvania Constitution. It opens the door for future laws to limit or ban abortion.

A little background:

State Constitutional Rights

When Roe v. Wade was overturned in June 2022, we lost the right to abortion under the United States Constitution.

That did not affect the rights that are protected under the Pennsylvania State Constitution.

To ban abortion in Pennsylvania, lawmakers must first strip our reproductive rights out of the state constitution.

They plan to do that with SB 106.

“This constitution does not grant the right to tax-payer funded abortion or any other right relating to abortion.”

What happens if we lose “any right relating to abortion”?

Why does it matter?

Laws are not allowed to infringe on our constitutional rights. 

Without reproductive rights protected in the constitution, SB 106 would allow legislators to radically regulate all manner of reproductive health care, including:

  • Extreme regulation of—and even a total ban on—abortion
  • Restricted access to IVF, contraception, and birthing care
  • Regulations on abortion that prevent doctors from treating ectopic pregnancies or miscarriage
  • Laws that impede doctors from offering medical care to a pregnant woman if that care might endanger an ongoing pregnancy
  • Criminalization and Texas-style citizen vigilante bans
  • Restrictions on activities of pregnant people perceived to potentially harm the zygote, embryo or fetus.

5 constitutional amendments in one:

Bad Policy + Late Night Votes

The Anti-Abortion amendment was originally its own bill (SB 956).

In July 2022, in the middle of the night, lawmakers added anti-abortion language into a different, larger bill, SB 106, combining it with four other constitutional amendments.

The House and Senate then each voted on the full package and silenced any meaningful discussion. For the full story, check out this breakdown by Fair Districts PA.

The constitutional amendment process:

3 opportunities to stop SB 106

1. We Flip the General Assembly

The simplest and most effective way to stop SB 106 is to elect legislators who have already promised to protect abortion rights.

If we don’t succeed, then:

2. We pressure legislators to vote No

The House and Senate are likely to vote on the amendment in January or February 2023. We’ll organize and pressure legislators to vote “No” by calling and showing up to events.

If we don’t succeed, then:

3. We Reject it at the ballot

If it passes both chambers, it is likely to be on the ballot for the 2023 primaries, typically an election with a very low turnout. We’ll educate and motivate Pennsylvanians to turn out and reject it, like they did in Kansas.