August 2, 2023

One year ago today, on August 2nd, democracy and reproductive freedom won in Kansas—and won big.

The results came in for a historic election on a proposed constitutional amendment that would have eliminated the right to an abortion in Kansas, with the measure losing 59 to 41 percent. Kansans rejected this extreme attempt to undermine our bodily autonomy. We voted no and chose reproductive freedom instead.

In the months prior, all eyes were on Kansas—it would be the first time in the country that Americans would have a chance to respond to the US Supreme Court's overturning of Roe v. Wade earlier that summer.

Kansas voters would have to overcome a lot:

  • Lawmakers had placed the vote in the primary election, which usually excludes voters unaffiliated with a political party and consistently has lower turnout;
  • There was not a presidential or other major national race on the ballot
  • The language of the ballot proposal was also confusing, and at one point there were even misleading texts sent to voters about what a 'yes' vote would mean.

But a huge number of organizers, organizations, community groups, and people like you came together to keep voters informed and to urge them to show up to the polls.

Kansas voters turned out in record-breaking numbers to resoundingly VOTE NO on the amendment. It was a landslide victory demonstrating that as Kansans, we trusted each other to make the best decisions for ourselves and for our families—and that lawmakers needed to stay out of our deeply private and personal medical decisions.

By voting no, Kansans protected bodily autonomy, reproductive freedom, and the right to access an abortion during a chapter when those rights have been under attack more than ever, in Kansas and across the country.

August 2, 2022 showed us what's possible when community and democracy come together, and we want to remember that today. We know this fight isn't over, and that extremists will return again. But we also know that when we put the time in to make our voices heard and work together, we can pull off extraordinary things. Together we can build a state that better represents our values and helps us care for each other—and that's truly powerful.

Happy Vote No Victory Day, Kansas.