There was a lot of primary election results to sort through last night, but the one I was paying the most attention to was the amendment vote in Kansas.
As a reminder, Kansas Republicans put a constitutional amendment on the ballot that, had it passed, would have banned abortion in the state. They used incredibly underhanded tactics as well, from incredibly poorly worded language that appeared on the ballot itself to sending text messages to Democratic voters encouraging them to vote Yes for “choice” when in fact the opposite was true.
But in the end, their ploy did not work. As of late Tuesday evening as I write this blog post, 96% of the votes are counted and the No vote is winning easily with 58.8% of the vote. To give you a sense of how lopsided a result that is, consider that that’s a nearly 40 point swing from the margin that Trump won the vote in Kansas in 2020!
On top of that election officials were predicting that this primary election would see roughly 36% turnout. Primary elections in a non-presidential year see very low turnout so this number wasn’t a surprise. What was a surprise was that the turnout was closer to 50% last night.
Furthermore, I learned that of all the people who registered to vote in Kansas after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v Wade, 70% of them were women.
Oh! And it appears that 20% of the voters in Kansas came out JUST to vote on the abortion amendment, as there were more votes cast for/against the amendment than there were in both of the governors’ primaries combined.
Something is clearly happening in the country.
Enjoy this moment. Women and pro-choice voters in this country are very angry about Republicans trying to take away their rights, and they are taking that anger to the ballot box. I fully expect pundits to start thinking differently about the November midterms based on this result tonight. As they should.
But I also implore you to do what the Kansas voters did. Pay close attention to what is happening in your own state, in your state legislatures, and in the state’s courtrooms. Get involved in fighting back against Republican extremism, because it is everywhere, including in blue states.
I’ll leave you with the most important tweet I saw last night, by David Pepper: