Kansas voters reject proposal for legislature to decide abortion law

In a blow to pro-life hopes, the voters of Kansas have rejected a constitutional amendment that would have given authority to the state legislature to make abortion law without being constrained by a radically pro-abortion ruling adopted by a state court in 2019.

That decision by the Kansas State Supreme Court had found that a section of the Kansas Constitution Bill of Rights, dating from 1859, referring to “equal and inalienable natural rights, among which are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” included a right to abortion. The Court further ruled that any restriction on abortion, to be constitutional, would have to be subject to an even higher standard than that demanded by the radical Roe v Wade abortion regime.

That resulted in even modest restrictions to abortion in Kansas being struck down.

Monday’s vote would have given authority to the State Legislature to overrule the State Court’s ‘strict scrutiny’ standard for abortion and make laws in the area as it saw fit.

While no legislative bill was waiting to be enacted, pro-choice activists claimed the State Government might ban abortion entirely, rather than merely restrict the existing permissive regime.

With 95% of ballots counted, the amendment was being rejected by a 58.8 to 41.2pc margin.