The polarizing positions of the pro-choice and pro-life movements have drowned out the fact that a lot of Americans are willing to allow abortions under certain specific circumstances. In fact, a recent Gallup poll found that 48% felt that abortion should be allowed in some circumstances.
What are those circumstances? That has been the political football that has been punted around between Congress, the courts, and the states for years. It is time to ask the people for a solution.
How? The Republic of Ireland has a roadmap that we could use. Like us, they had the same polarizing views that dominated the conversation. Yet they found a way to hear those in the middle by initiating a process that has been used hundreds of times around the world: a citizens’ assembly. The Irish citizens assembly on abortion heard from experts and stakeholders, deliberated, and came up with a proposal. This proposal became the basis for a national referendum which passed with 66% in favor. The resulting law allows abortions in the first few months without cause and abortions for specific reasons in later months. It is a law that originates from the middle ground.
Democracy Without Elections is the only member-driven organization in the United States that promotes citizens’ assemblies. We are an official 501(c)3 nonprofit registered with the IRS. We have over 150 members from across the country. We believe in citizens’ assemblies so much that we are the first organization to be governed by one. Join our movement to bring real democracy to our country.