Joe Ganim wants abortion protections in state constitution

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HARTFORD -

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Joe Ganim says he wants to change the Connecticut Constitution to protect abortion rights.

Connecticut state law has legalized abortion for almost 30 years. 

But Ganim says a constitutional amendment would protect abortion rights if the United States Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.

"A statute is susceptible, at some point, to being changed, repealed," he says. A change to the constitution could be stronger.

Critics are questioning the motive behind the proposal.

"I think I'd ask my attorney general whether this is political posturing or it's necessary," says Ned Lamont, another Democratic candidate for governor.

The state attorney general, campaigning with Ganim's opponent Monday, said an amendment would only be necessary if Congress tried to limit abortion access.

"I wouldn't rule out supporting a constitutional amendment," says Attorney General George Jepsen, who is also a Democrat. "But at this point, I think it would be premature."

Altering the state constitution requires 75 percent of state lawmakers to approve the change -- then further approval from Connecticut voters.

None of the five Republicans in the race responded to News 12 requests for comment Monday. Last month, the state's largest pro-life group said it was hoping for more abortion limitations.

"Already, the court is allowing the states to pass legislation," said Bill O'Brien, of the Connecticut Right-to-Life Corp. "More legislation has been passed in the last five years than in the previous 40 years altogether."

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