By Bobby Caina Calvan Associated Press

HELENA (AP) – A Montana lawmaker wants voters to change the state constitution to declare that human life begins at conception.

Republican Rep. Derek Skees of Kalispell introduced a bill Tuesday that would put before voters a constitutional amendment saying that an embryo, at its singular moment of conception, is a “person” under the law.

Similar attempts have failed in the Legislature and in the initiative process.

Opponents say the proposed referendum is not only another attempt to outlaw abortion but could also bring legal scrutiny to in vitro fertilization procedures.

Skees calls his bill the “tip of the spear” that could help topple Roe vs. Wade, the landmark 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion.

Skees says the political environment is ripe for challenging abortion because Republicans now control Congress and the White House.

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