Kansas voters on Tuesday (Aug. 2) rejected a proposed state constitutional amendment that would have given lawmakers in the state the ability to ban or regulate abortion.
In the first state ballot on abortion rights since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June, 908,745 votes were cast on the “Value Them Both” amendment, with 59% voting “No” and 41% voting “Yes.”
The amendment would have given the state’s elected representatives the ability to pass legislation regulating abortion in Kansas. In 2019, the Kansas Supreme Court ruled that “the Kansas Constitution Bill of Rights affords protection of the right of personal autonomy,” which includes the decision “whether to continue a pregnancy.”
Restrictions in place
Kansas law restricts abortions after 22 weeks of pregnancy in most cases. The state allows public funding of abortion only in cases where the mother’s life is in danger or in cases of pregnancy due to rape or incest. The use of telemedicine to administer a medication abortion is prohibited in the state, and those seeking an abortion must receive an ultrasound and counseling and wait 24 hours before the abortion can be performed.
Voters in several states, including Montana, Kentucky, Vermont and California, will see abortion-related measures on their November ballots. Efforts also are underway in Colorado and Michigan to get initiatives on the November ballot.
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