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A short history of Colorado's abortion activism from 1891 to present

In his second term, Rep. Dick Lamm, a Denver Democrat, sponsored the 1967 law loosening requirements for an abortion.

DENVER — The 2022 Colorado law that affirms the right to an abortion is the most significant legislation since 1967 – and maybe even before that.

It's well known that Colorado was the first state in the nation to enact a law that allowed a woman to obtain an abortion. But that 1967 law is nowhere near as permissive as this year's legislation.

A 32-year-old lawmaker in his second term, Rep. Dick Lamm, a Denver Democrat, sponsored the 1967 law that, while allowing abortion, also put several hurdles in the way of a woman seeking the procedure. Under that law, abortion was allowed only in cases of rape, incest, fetal abnormality or to protect the life of the mother. In addition, the law, signed on April 25, 1967 by Republican Gov. John Love, also required permission from the husband and a review by a three-doctor panel. Finally, the abortion was allowed only up to 16 weeks of pregnancy.

The 1967 law did more than legalize abortion it overturned previous state law that banned it. 

In 1891, the General Assembly adopted Senate Bill 310, which criminalized the "procuring" of an abortion, a law that went after the providers, rather than the women seeking an abortion. And in 1909, a state law prohibited osteopaths from performing abortions.

>Read the full article (first published in May) at Colorado Politics.

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