What Does Each Vote Mean?

A “NO” vote would keep the Bill of Rights in the Kansas Constitution as is, affirming the legal precedent established in Hodes & Nauser v. Schmidt (2019) that a woman has a natural and fundamental right to continue or to end a pregnancy. The Kansas Supreme Court ruled that this is not an absolute right and can be limited by legislative action if there is a compelling state interest and if the law is narrowly tailored to promote that interest.

A ”YES” vote would amend the Kansas Constitution to state that there is no right in the Kansas constitution to abortion nor requirement that there be government funding for abortion. The state legislature would have the authority to pass laws regarding abortion including, but not limited to, instances where the pregnancy is a result of rape, incest, or necessary to protect the life of the mother. Such laws could not be challenged as being “non-constitutional.”

 

 

Links for More Detailed Information about Abortion in Kansas:

Additional Resources Regarding the Amendment:

Frequently Asked Questions:

Who gets abortions in the United States?

  • According to a 2019 study conducted by the CDC, there is no specific demographic group who get abortions. However there are a few statistics that should be highlighted. 60% of the people getting abortions already have children.  58% of patients who get abortions have never had abortions before. Crucially, 92% of abortions happen in the first trimester (conception to twelve weeks).
    • These statistics were taken from the New York Times article, “Who Gets Abortions in America?”. To read more, click here.

Do patients who get abortions use contraceptives?

  • 51% of people who got abortions in 2014 were using contraceptives. The most commonly used forms of contraception were condoms (24% of patients) and the pill (13% of patients). Out of the 37.8 million U.S. women and girls aged 15-44 who were using contraception, there were only 471,000 abortions were provided to contraception users.
    • Information provided by the Guttmacher Institute article, “About Half of U.S. Abortion Patients Report Using Contraception in the Month They Became Pregnant”. To read more, click here.

Do patients who get abortions suffer mentally?

  • A report released by the journal Social Science & Medicine in January of 2020 found that 99% of women said having an abortion was the right choice 5 years later. New research has even found that patients feel a sense of relief after they have an abortion.
    • Statistics provided by the Healthline article “99% of Women Say They Feel Relief, Not Regret, 5 Years After Having an Abortion”. To read more, click here.

Which Kansas Legislators agreed to put women’s constitutional rights up for a vote?

  • It was a party-line vote in the Senate – all Republicans present voted to approve the amendment ( Republican Senator Bud Estes was absent) and all Democrats voted NAY. Read more about the Senate vote information here.
  • It was a party-line vote in the House – all Republicans voted to approve the amendment and all Democrats present voted NAY (Democratic Representative Virgil Weigal was absent). Read more about the House vote information here

What you should know about current abortion law in Kansas:

  • There is no public funding or private health insurance funding for abortion in Kansas unless the pregnant person’s life is threatened.
  • Abortion after 22 weeks (viability) is already banned.
  • Parental consent is already required.
  • A 24-hour waiting period is required.
  • The Kansas Board of Healing Arts has requirements for all clinics, physicians, procedures, and prescription protocol, including for abortion as it is a medical procedure. 
  • If Roe v. Wade (1973) is overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court, all questions about abortion will be sent back to the states. If this amendment also passes, there will be no Constitutional basis for any abortion rights in Kansas.

What other rights, in addition to abortion, have been decided based on the right to privacy?

  • Contraceptives
  • In-vitro fertilization
  • Marriage (interracial, same-sex)
  • Bodily autonomy