The Guardian reports that in Kansas, the number of women arriving from neighboring states to have abortions has doubled since June. Women from Arkansas, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas already depend on traveling across the border to get abortions. However, the rush is already so great that clinics have to turn away women and send them to other countries – often several thousand kilometers.
Unlike other states, the Kansas Republican government cannot simply ban abortion at this time because the local constitution enshrines the right to abortion. If the vote to amend the Constitution fails, there is a possibility that this right will be severely curtailed or – more likely – completely abolished.
Multi-million dollar campaigns before voting
Both opponents and supporters of abortion have mobilized costly campaigns in recent weeks. The Kansas Organization for Constitutional Freedom, supported among others by Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren, is said to have raised a total of more than seven million dollars in the fight against constitutional change.
On the other hand, Value Them Both stands for a $6 million campaign against abortion rights. Most of the money comes from the Archdiocese of Kansas City.
Kansas: Abortion Rights Vote
Kansas votes on a constitutional amendment that would ban abortion. Kansas tracks that abortion is already illegal in some US states, which makes the situation for women in the southern US even more difficult.
As reported by the BBC, the result of the vote is open. According to a poll, 47 percent of eligible voters plan to keep the abortion amendment and 43 percent against it.
With the upcoming US midterm elections in November, the vote in Kansas is an indication of how residents in conservative states view the issue. The Kansas results are expected to have a significant impact on campaigns in other states as well.
43 abortion clinics closed
Since the US Supreme Court’s controversial decision on abortion laws, at least 43 US clinics have stopped offering abortions. In the month following the landmark ruling on June 24, 11 states banned abortion either completely or after the sixth week of pregnancy, according to a study by the Guttmacher Institute Thursday.
As a result, at least 43 abortion clinics closed or switched to other services. So there are 23 clinics in Texas, five in Oklahoma and five in Alabama. Abortion access, which is already very poor in most parts of the country, will continue to deteriorate as more states enact abortion bans in the coming weeks and months.
The US House of Representatives has a new initiative
The Democratic-controlled House of Representatives approved two bills in mid-July aimed at improving abortion opportunities across the country. The first law aims to reintroduce the right to abortion in principle. The second text aims to protect women who have to travel to another country to have an abortion.
However, the two legal texts hardly stand a chance. To get their vote in the Senate, the second chamber of Congress, they would require the votes of at least ten opposing Republican senators. This is considered almost impossible.
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