Hillary Clinton visits San Francisco to campaign for Prop 1 abortion rights amendment

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made a visit to San Francisco Thursday to campaign for Proposition 1, an effort on the November 8th ballot, that would amend California's constitution to include an individual's right to have an abortion and choose or refuse contraceptives.

Secretary Clinton arrived at the Planned Parenthood headquarters in San Francisco around 3 p.m. for a meeting with leaders in the abortion rights movement. Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California President Jodi Hicks, national NARAL Pro-Choice America President Mini Timmaraju, and Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis are among the supporters of the state's Yes on Prop 1 campaign.

"A lot of younger people might not even know that in a bunch of states as late as the late 1960s, it was illegal to use contraception," said Secretary Clinton, who spoke to a crowd of about 100 people at the gathering in San Francisco.

"This issue of access to abortion and contraception are issues that go right to the heart of privacy and freedom," said Secretary Clinton, "This moment is so important for women's rights, human rights, fundamental freedoms, democracy."

"The most important fundamental freedom that women have had in modern history is the ability to choose when, if, and under what circumstances they want to have a baby," said Lt. Governor Kounalakis.

Secretary Clinton said she hopes the Prop 1 constitutional amendment becomes a template for other states to use, as the battle over abortion goes to states following the Supreme Court's overturning of Roe v. Wade.

"70% of the people across the country did not want Roe v. Wade to be overturned and yet here we are," said Hicks. 

"All eyes on California now so that other states are inspired, to know it's a winning strategy," said Hicks, "We know that when people know that abortion is on the ballot, then they'll come out and vote for it so right now we're just doing an awareness campaign."

Outside protestors who oppose Prop 1 shouted and chanted. Opponents include San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone who posted a video online, urging Californians to vote no.

"Is this what we want for the state of California? To be known as the state of abortion tourism?" said Cordileone.

Catherine Hadro, a No on Prop 1 spokeswoman, says a recent rally in Sacramento October 6th shows that opposition is not limited to the Catholic Church.

"Atheist, Muslim, Evangelical, this was a rare time we had Republicans for Choice and Democrats for Life coming together to say this proposition is too extreme," said Hadro, who says there is fear that Prop 1 could open the door for late-term abortions in California.

Organizers with Yes on Prop 1 say they are also seeing people crossing over traditional party lines to support Prop 1.

"It's being driven by young women, young voters, but also, this is really important, independents, and Republicans who are saying enough. Enough with this extremism," said Timmaraju of NARAL Pro-Choice America.

Proposition 1 needs a simple majority to pass.