Mississippi voters soundly rejected the "Personhood" initiative Tuesday, sending a clear message that the measure was a step too far, even for a conservative, anti-abortion state. With 60 percent of precincts reporting late last night, the margin was 57 percent against, 43 percent in favor.
The measure would have defined a fertilized egg as a "person," which would have essentially banned abortion and some forms of birth control. Most doctors in Mississippi were opposed to the law, saying it would interfere with their ability to treat pregnant patients.
The initiative was pushed by a Colorado-based group, Personhood USA. Keith Mason, the group's founder, told the AP that he would keep up the fight in Mississippi, either through legislation or another ballot initiative.
The group is also trying to put referendums on 2012 ballots in Florida, Montana, Ohio, Oregon, Nevada and California. Mason also said that the group plans to pursue "life-at-fertilization" legislation in 2012 in Alabama, Wisconsin and Michigan.
Let me say that if Mississippi voters rejected this amendment, it's pretty unlikely to pass anywhere else, with the exception of maybe Alabama. Mississippi was selected because it's conservative and the Personhood movement figured it was their best shot.
Way to go, Mississippi. I'm proud of y'all.