Wednesday, August 03, 2022

Blowback on abortion

At the end of June, the US Supreme Court overturned Roe v Wade, putting abortion rights in America under threat. The move was unpopular - abortion rights have had clear majority support for decades and only a tiny minority of religious bigots think it should be illegal in all circumstances - but Republican theocrats didn't care, and started enacting (or activating) abortion bans. One of these efforts was in Kansas, where Republicans ran a referendum to overturn a state supreme court ruling and remove abortion protection from the state constitution. Being Republicans, of course, they didn't want a fair vote - so they ran a physical vote parallel to the Republican Party primary (where Democrats and non-aligned voters wouldn't be voting), and pulled out all the usual scams to trick people into voting the way they wanted. And despite all that, they just had their arses handed to them:

Kansans secured a huge win for abortion rights in the US on Tuesday night when they voted to continue to protect abortion in the state constitution.

The race was called by a host of US groups like NBC News, the New York Times and Decision Desk HQ.

The move will be seen as huge a loss for the anti-abortion movement and a major win for abortion rights advocates across America, who will see the result as a bellwether for popular opinion.

And this is Kansas, about as red a state as you can get. If Kansas won't vote to eliminate abortion rights - by a margin of 60 - 40 - then it seems unlikely other states will if given the choice. And Republican legislators pushing for abortion bans may find themselves getting massacred at the ballot box come November.