(Iowa’s bishops released the following statement on Jan. 6.)
We support an Iowa constitutional amendment to clarify that a right to abortion is not guaranteed by the State of Iowa Constitution.
The Iowa Supreme Court, in a June 2018 decision, struck down the law requiring a three-day waiting period before an abortion is performed. In pursuit of that decision, the Court claimed that the Iowa Constitution provided for a fundamental right to abortion.
Such a claim is groundless, given that for 115 years the same State of Iowa Constitution served as the basis for a legislative ban on abortion except to save the life of a mother.
The dignity of the human person is the foundation of our moral vision for society. We recognize that each person is created in the image and likeness of God. Hence, direct attacks on innocent persons are never acceptable. This is why abortion is such an important issue.
We believe it is important to make this amendment to the Iowa Constitution. This is a question of the common good. We can help pregnant women in need, the men who fathered those children, and families in distress without recourse to the violence of abortion.
Signed by Archbishop Michael Jackels, Archdiocese of Dubuque; Bishop Thomas Zinkula, Diocese of Davenport; Bishop R. Walker Nickless, Diocese of Sioux City; and Bishop William Joensen, Des Moines Diocese.