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New York abortion rights amendment removed from November ballot by courts

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  • Staff Report 

A proposed New York State constitutional amendment aimed at reinforcing abortion rights and banning discrimination based on gender identity and pregnancy outcomes was removed from the November ballot. The removal followed a successful legal challenge by Republican Assemblywoman Marjorie Byrnes, who argued that the process to place the amendment on the ballot was conducted illegally.


A Monroe County Supreme Court judge ruled on Tuesday that the amendment could not proceed due to a procedural oversight: the failure to obtain a written opinion from New York State Attorney General Letitia James on the proposed changes. Byrnes highlighted that the process violated constitutional norms, including a lack of the required 72 hours’ notice before voting, which she claimed was intended to allow legislators adequate time to review the content.

In reaction to the court’s decision, Attorney General James expressed disappointment and vowed to appeal, emphasizing the amendment’s intent to safeguard fundamental rights, including reproductive freedom. Byrnes maintained that her lawsuit focused solely on the procedural errors and expected the decision to be challenged in higher courts.