Politics How the 2022 midterms could change policy after the...

How the 2022 midterms could change policy after the Kansas abortion vote

-

- Advertisment -


Allie Utley and Joe Moyer react to their county voting against the proposed constitutional amendment during the Constitutional Freedom Primary Election Watch Party for Constitutional Freedom on August 2 in Overland Park, Kansas.

DAVE KAUP/AFP via Getty Images


Toggle caption

DAVE KAUP/AFP via Getty Images


Allie Utley and Joe Moyer react to their county voting against the proposed constitutional amendment during the Constitutional Freedom Primary Election Watch Party for Constitutional Freedom on August 2 in Overland Park, Kansas.

DAVE KAUP/AFP via Getty Images

On Tuesday, voters in Kansas overwhelmingly rejected a ballot initiative that would have opened the door to significant abortion restrictions in the state.

It was the first political test of voter appetite for state abortion restrictions after the Supreme Court overturned them. Roe v. crazy in June.

The decisive vote against curbs on abortion rights in the deeply conservative state has political strategists in both parties reframing their views on the upcoming midterm elections.

“Well, [Tuesday] Night was a slap in the face for me, personally, as a consultant who’s done this for 32 years,” said Chuck Rocha, a veteran Democratic activist. “When the decision came from the Supreme Court, I was one of the people who said if it’s your problem , you’ve already picked a team — you’re already team red or you’re blue, and that will have some impact, but not a huge impact.”

But after seeing a surprising turnout in a state that former President Trump won by 15 points in 2020, Rocha thinks abortion rights will play a big role in the November election.

“It just proved that there’s energy around this issue and I think [Tuesday] It was historic,” he said.

Republican strategist John Feehery said the Kansas result should be a “wake-up call” for Republicans.

“Republicans in the pro-life movement need to unite on abortion—Dobbs, because they are everywhere,” he said. “The problem is that you have people wanting to be the most conservative candidate in the primary, but they take positions that are unpopular with most voters. So they need to tread carefully, they need to calibrate, they need to understand where most of the voters are — and most of the voters are in the middle. They are not at either end.”

He said GOP candidates must make clear that their views on abortion “have nothing to do with same-sex marriage and certainly nothing to do with contraception,” two issues that have forced Democrats to get votes on the record to support their Republican colleagues in Congress. Concerns that other rights could be threatened by the Supreme Court’s decision led to opposition. Last month, 195 House Republicans Voted against the law Aimed at protecting access to birth control.

Feehery said that although Tuesday’s result has raised spirits nationally among Democrats, the “saving grace” for Republicans is that abortion is not the first issue facing the country.

“Inflation and the economy are more important to most voters, and I think that’s what they’ll vote for,” Feehery said.

According to recent information NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist Poll, inflation is the No. 1 issue for Republican and independent voters as they think about the midterm elections; Registered Democrats rank abortion first.

Voter registration among women in Kansas was huge after Dobbs

While the results of the Kansas vote were surprising, it was the turnout that shocked Tom Bonnier, CEO of TargetSmart, a Democratic data firm.

“When you analyze the data, you get excited when you see regular movements, maybe five or six points — that’s telling you something meaningful has happened, something outside the norm. And in this case, we saw something outside the norm 20 By points,” he said. “I’ve never seen anything on that scale in terms of that intensity.”

More than 900,000 people in Kansas voted Tuesday, a level of participation that marks the state’s highest voter turnout in a 2018 general election.

Republicans have a big voter registration advantage in the state.

“[The results] Prove that Democrats can maybe peel off some of these moderate Republican women, who take this issue very personally,” Rocha said.

Bonnier analyzed voter registration numbers before and after June 24, when the Supreme Court struck down the constitutional right to abortion.

“What we saw there was remarkable,” Bonnier said. “Seventy percent of new voter registrants in Kansas were women. If you look at the same period last election cycle, new voter registrants were almost evenly split between men and women.”

Bonnier also points to the number of young people registered to vote in the wake of the Supreme Court decision – more than half are under 25.

“In the 2018 general election, a lot of that so-called blue wave was just driven by massive, unprecedented increases in youth turnout. So the question we’re asking ourselves at this point is what we saw this week in Kansas. The first indicator that something similar is happening in 2022.” , and women’s participation in these elections will increase dramatically, leading to surprising results?”

Rocha notes that demographic changes will also play a role in November.

“For the first time in American political history, voters of color will have a major impact on who controls Congress. This particular issue of choice over-indexes and influences low-income people, particularly young women of color,” he said. Key Senate races in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Georgia, Arizona and Nevada.

“So [abortion] There is a motivating factor, and it proved Tuesday, to inspire young black and brown voters, especially young black and brown women, that could be this year’s sleeping monster, and a story that will be told for a long time. .”

One Democratic pollster sees what happened in Kansas as a ‘sea change’

This year, a record number of abortion measures are on state ballots, and the issue will be a factor in other races up and down the ballot in November, including for governor, Senate, House, state supreme courts and state attorney general.

Democratic pollster Celinda Lake said in the wake of the Supreme Court decision that anti-abortion voters feel they’ve won, so they’re not excited.

“We’re seeing pro-choice voters and particularly women, young women and baby boomer women who remember what it was like back in the day. Roe v. crazyGetting very excited and getting 10 to 20 points more excited than anti-choice voters,” she said. “It’s a sea change.”

She’s heard in focus groups of voters concerned about the “slippery slope” — the idea that curtailing abortion rights could roll back other rights.

“They’re concerned about marriage equality, they’re concerned about protecting voting rights, they’re concerned about birth control, they’re concerned about abortion,” Lake described. “Voters in our focus groups ask, ‘What’s next?'”

Mallory Carroll, Susan B. Anthony, vice president of communications for Pro-Life America, said the results in Kansas were a “devastating loss” for the anti-abortion rights movement.

“The question now is, what lesson will pro-life Republicans learn from this disappointing loss?”

She said Republican candidates should be “very clear” about their positions, including whether there are instances where they think abortion should be allowed, and not shy away from addressing the issue.

“Republicans need to stop what they’re doing right now, which is in many cases pretending this is an issue. [of abortion] non-existent and instead focus on inflation, gas prices, crime, etc., to get them over the finish line,” she said. “There’s no question that those are very salient issues that voters care about. But if pro-life Republicans fail to define themselves and what their policies are, pro-abortion Democrats will do it for them.”

White House Responds – And ‘The Power Of American Women’

“The court dared women in this country to go to the ballot box and restore their right to choose,” President Biden said Wednesday after meeting virtually with the White House Task Force on Reproductive Health Care.

Republicans and the high court “don’t know the power of American women,” Biden said. “Last night in Kansas, they found out.”


Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas listens as President Biden delivers remarks during the first meeting of the Interagency Task Force on Reproductive Health Care Access on August 3.

Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images


Toggle caption

Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images


Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas listens as President Biden delivers remarks during the first meeting of the Interagency Task Force on Reproductive Health Care Access on August 3.

Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

During that meeting, Biden signed his second executive order aimed at preserving abortion access. The order directs the Department of Health and Human Services to “consider action on access to reproductive health services, including through Medicaid for patients traveling out of state for reproductive health services.”

The The order directs HHS The Court’s decision noted that providers “may be confused or uncertain about their obligations after a Supreme Court decision” to “consider all appropriate actions” to ensure that health care providers comply with nondiscrimination laws to ensure that people receive “medically necessary care without delay.”

But Biden himself has acknowledged the limits of what he and his administration can do to fully protect abortion rights. He repeatedly issued a “vote, vote” message in November to rally Democrats in Congress to codify abortion rights into federal law and bring legislation to their desks for signature.

Latest news

Christopher Meyer, British ambassador to the US, dies at 78

Christopher Meyer, a good-natured diplomat who served as Britain's ambassador to Washington from 1997 to 2003 but later...

Democrats want to squeeze every dollar out of Americans’ pockets for their ‘wasteful’ spending: Rep. Donald

closer Video Democrats want to squeeze every dollar out of Americans' pockets...

Chelsea Leicester in hiding as Hudson-Odoi pushes for loan exit

Callum Hudson-Odoi has asked to leave Chelsea on loan before the transfer window closes. The winger was...
- Advertisement -

A 10-game SEC football schedule? Make Commissioner Greg Sankey’s quirk come true | opinion

Arkansas' Sam Pittman went where coaches don't often go when discussing the future of SEC football scheduling: He...

Must read

- Advertisement -

You might also likeRELATED
Recommended to you