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Parental notification initiative fails to qualify for November ballot

June 2, 2010 - 2:34 pm

A fourth try to get a parental-notification law passed in California failed to qualify for the November ballot. According to the California Secretary of State’s website, not enough signatures were gathered for all four versions of the initiative, which would have required that the parents or guardian of any female under 18 seeking an abortion be notified before the abortion can proceed. Since the initiative also would have amended the state Constitution, which currently guarantees privacy to any woman who terminates a pregnancy, it needed 694,354 signatures to get on the ballot (as opposed to 433,971 signatures for other initiatives).

This despite its politically appealing title: Parental Notification, Child and Teen Safety, and Stop Predators Act

Although the initiative was proposed by “John Smith,” it’s presumed that San Diego Reader editor Jim Holman is the author. He used the same name for 2008’s Prop. 4. If this year’s initiative had qualified, it would have been Holman’s fourth attempt at such a law, despite the progressively poor showing his ballot measure have had since 2005:

* Prop. 4 was defeated in November 2008 with 52 percent voting no.
* Prop. 4′s predecessor, Prop. 85, was defeated in 2006 with 54 percent voting no.
* Prop. 85′s predecessor, Prop. 73, was defeated in 2005 with 52.7 percent voting no.

In all, Holman spent more than $5 million trying to get the law passed.

A handful of other measures that failed to qualify for the June or November ballots:

* A ban on voting by anyone who can’t provide a government-issued ID.

* A change to the Constitution’s “definition of a person” to include fertilized human eggs.

* State income and property tax reprieve for any California resident 55 or older.

* Reinstatment of the right of same-sex couples to marry.

* Requirement that public schools allow kids to “listen to or perform Christmas music during the holiday season.”

* A ban on divorce.

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