Tuesday’s primary candidates aren’t the only folks knocking on doors and asking for South Dakotans’ support today. (Reynold, Patrick, Joan, Darrell, Carmen, Deb, Lora, Stace, Caleb, Dan, Drew, Todd—you are out knocking and not reading the blogs today, right?) NARAL Pro-Choice South Dakota is launching a door-to-door campaign in Sioux Falls and Brookings this month to mobilize voters to counter the suppression of women’s rights peddled by South Dakota’s anti-abortion lobby.
Here’s NARAL-SD’s explanation of this new campaign, which is focused on resisting “TRAP” laws, like the one in Texas that the U.S. Supreme Court is considering right now, that attempt to regulate abortion clinics out of existence:
NARAL Pro-Choice South Dakota, together with NARAL Pro-Choice America and staff from five states across the country, is descending on Sioux Falls this weekend for its first-ever activist training. Dozens of reproductive freedom advocates will be going door-to-door in the city of Sioux Falls June 4 and 5, to identify supporters and incite pro-choice activism in South Dakota.
The summit is integral to NARAL’s aggressive, state-centric plan to build a new base of power, made up of diverse constituencies who are primed to be vocally supportive of reproductive rights. To achieve this vision for nationwide power, NARAL has strategically invested in key states to directly confront anti-choice policies and actors.
“We know that seven in 10 Americans support legal access to abortion – even in states where anti-choice politicians hold super-majorities,” says Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America. “That’s why we have made strategic investments in important states across the country like South Dakota to train the network of activists who will help defend and expand our reproductive freedom.”
This initiative is part of a $2 million investment to combat the dangerous implications of TRAP (Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers) laws across the country in the wake of the Supreme Court case Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, a challenge to the Texas TRAP Law HB2.
“This is a critical moment for women and families our state,” says Susan Krger, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice South Dakota states. “Because the decision released by the Supreme Court may have enough of an impact to close the lone abortion clinic in South Dakota, this summit is an opportunity to give a visual presence to what we believe is the silent majority in our state. South Dakotans have voted twice to keep abortion safe and legal, and that liberty continues to be chipped away.”
The canvass summit is the launch of NARAL Pro-Choice South Dakota’s first door-to-door voter engagement effort, and will continue in Sioux Falls and Brookings during the month of June [NARAL Pro-Choice South Dakota, press release, 2016.06.03].
One voter (one, out of 65 doors I knocked the other night) asked me if I was pro-life or pro-choice. The correct answer is, “Both.” Life is precious, but so is choice. We should respect human life and its inherent dignity… but respecting the dignity of our fellow human beings means respecting the right of women to choose what happens inside their bodies. Some choices, like pregnancy, are not for the government to make.