Kansas GOP to stymie ban in reversing abortion-rights ruling


Top Kansas Republicans wish to head off any push for an abortion ban in the reveal even as they assign overturning a Kansas Supreme Court ruling that protects abortion rights a top precedence


JOHN HANNA AP Political Author

January 14, 2020, 2: 04 AM

4 min learn

TOPEKA, Kan. — Top Kansas Republicans wish to head off any push for an abortion ban in the reveal even as they assign overturning a Kansas Supreme Court ruling that protects abortion rights a top precedence.

The GOP-controlled Legislature expects to desire into sage a proposed amendment to the Kansas Constitution at some stage in the annual 90-day lawmaking session that opened Monday. It is miles a response to the reveal excessive court’s ruling in April that the reveal’s Bill of Rights makes obtain entry to to abortion a major correct.

“Our No. 1 focal point is the constitutional amendment,” said Kansas Dwelling Majority Chief Dan Hawkins, a conservative Wichita Republican. “This is no longer going to be about banning abortions. It’ll be about striking it support the place it is supposed to be, and that is with the Legislature.”

The debate in Kansas is coming after other states with Republican-led legislatures, alongside side neighboring Missouri, moved to ban abortions early in women folk’s pregnancies. GOP leaders and the reveal’s most influential anti-abortion community, Kansans for Existence, are pursuing a proposal that can allow legislators to preserve a watch on abortion as they gape fit.

They’re being pragmatic: They danger that a ban is no longer going to obtain thru the Legislature, and that despite the indisputable truth that it did, it would almost absolutely fail a required statewide vote. They argue that it does the anti-abortion motion no acceptable to push something that legislators or voters would reject.

If the constitution would not replace, reveal courts still can invalidate a raft of restrictions enacted over the last decade — despite the indisputable truth that the U.S. Supreme Court overturns its historic 1973 Roe v. Wade dedication legalizing abortion nationwide.

“Bans on abortion in other states beget no longer been a success. Even in among the most pro-life states, they’ve no longer been a success, and in states the place one has passed, they’re being tied up in court,” said Jeanne Gawdun, a longtime Kansans for Existence lobbyist. “That you can well maybe also very effectively be effectively no longer reaching the leisure.”

Legislators wish to Kansans for Existence for the proposed language of an amendment, and the community plans to desire a news convention Thursday to open its proposed textual sing.

Supporters will need two-thirds majorities in both chambers to obtain a measure build on the statewide ballot. It would then need approval from a easy majority of voters.

The Kansas Legislature has had anti-abortion majorities in both chambers for more than twenty years.

Nonetheless, abortion opponents’ political affect dipped when Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly, a salvage abortion rights supporter, become elected in 2018. Anti-abortion lawmakers final year narrowly did not override Kelly’s veto of a invoice that can beget required abortion providers to tell patients a few disputed remedy to remain a medicines abortion after it is been began.

Abortion rights advocates hope to remain the amendment from winning legislative approval.

“If a constitutional amendment passes announcing there’s no correct to abortion, then the minute Roe v. Wade is undermined or overturned, of us in Kansas will lose their correct to abortion, period,” Elise Higgins, vice president of the Kansas Abortion Fund, said.

In the intervening time, as a minimum a few abortion opponents prefer lawmakers to place an abortion ban on the ballot. They argue that the reveal constitution wishes to assign a salvage assertion in desire of holding human life and that doing the leisure less makes the reveal complicit in terminating pregnancies.

“They’ve made up our minds that moderately than going for it on fourth down, they’ll punt,” said reveal Sen. Dennis Pyle, a conservative Republican from rural northeast Kansas. “Usually you beget purchased to warfare for what you want.”

But even lawmakers who would desire to ban abortion specialise in this kind of coverage could well no longer be scrumptious to ample legislators or voters.

Gawdun and other abortion opponents argue that Kansans for Existence’s more incremental formulation has worked. The assortment of abortions performed in Kansas each and every year has dropped more than 40% over the last twenty years, from a height of more than 12,400 in 1999 to about 7,000 in 2018, the most up-to-the-minute reveal health department statistics on hand.

Verbalize Procure. Kyle Hoffman, a conservative southwest Kansas Republican, said if fellow abortion opponents fail to replace the reveal constitution, abortion restrictions will drop to court challenges and, “We will be support to being undoubtedly one of many most pro-abortion states in the United States.”

“I assign no longer judge we can obtain a corpulent ban thru the Legislature, no longer a two-thirds majority,” he said.


Notice John Hanna on Twitter at https://twitter.com/apjdhanna

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