Kansans to vote on constitutional amendment regarding abortion rights Aug. 2

Published: Jun. 24, 2022 at 4:31 PM CDT
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WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - Kansas is one of just a few states that’s considered an “abortion haven” or “sanctuary.” The state drew national attention in 1991 as anti-abortion activists mounted the “Summer of Mercy” sit-in protests. Eighteen years after that, abortion provider George Tiller was killed in his church.

Now, Kansas will once again be put in the spotlight. The state will be the first to vote on abortion rights following the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on June 17 overturning Roe v. Wade and returning the regulation of abortion back to the states.

On August 2, Kansas voters will decide whether the right to an abortion is protected by the Kansas constitution.

July 12 is the deadline to register to vote in Kansas' 2022 primary election

While the words “right to an abortion” are not directly stated in the Kansas constitution, a 2019 Kansas Supreme Court ruling protects a person’s right to personal autonomy – which includes decisions concerning pregnancy.

The proposed amendment to the Kansas constitution would remove the right to abortion that currently exists. It would also explicitly state that the government would not be required to provide funding for abortions. Finally, it would give state legislators the right to pass laws regarding abortion.

  • A “yes” vote affirms that the right to an abortion will no longer be guaranteed by the state’s constitution and legislators will be able to pass laws regulating abortion.
  • A “no” vote means nothing will change in the state. There will be no amendment and the state’s constitution will remain as it is today.

Again, any Kansas voter registered by July 12 will be able to vote on the constitutional amendment in the August primary. Voters do have to register as a Republican or Democrat to vote in the individual races for each party.

Many Wichitans now say they’re more interested in voting on Aug. 2.

“My personal preference is of course that we could have an outright ban on abortion,” Wichita voter Ada Seiwart. “Again, I understand that we live in a democracy and that democracy requires compromise.”

The views on the issue are split when it comes to whether voters will vote “yes” or “no” on Aug. 2.

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