As Kansas voters decide the first popular vote on abortion since the Supreme Court’s decision overturning the “right” to the procedure, the whole country will be watching for the result.
No one outside the Sunflower State should be casting a vote, but when it comes to the pro-abortion side, liberals and progressives from throughout the country have already weighed in.
And if pro-life activists actually score a victory after the votes are counted, it will have meant taking on opponents far from their own borders.
At The Federalist, the invaluable Margot Cleveland reported Monday, citing campaign finance reports, pro-lifers inside Kansas have provided 99 percent of the funding for the campaign for a “yes” vote on the “Value Them Both” constitutional amendment to allow the state legislature to limit abortion.
Meanwhile, Hemingway wrote, a staggering 71 percent of the funding for the pro-abortion side has come from out-of-state sources.
The pro-life side had brought in $4.69 million for the period between Jan. 1 and July 18, Hemingway reported. The pro-abortion side has brought in $6.54 million.
On their face, those numbers make it appear as though the pro-abortion side has outraised the pro-life side. But when the dollars coming strictly from inside Kansas are considered, the situation is actually the reverse.
If progressives were truly confident they were on the side of the American public, would they need to marshal outside resources to win stated-level decisions? Of course not.
Tomorrow Kansans vote on the Value Them Both amendment, but they may not realize that their votes may be influenced by out-of-state abortion activists flooding market with lies. @FDRLST https://t.co/1WkxcGMhG7
— Margot Cleveland (@ProfMJCleveland) August 1, 2022
The official vote on the referendum is Tuesday, when the state holds its primary, but early voting has already begun, with about 271,000 ballots already cast by Monday, according to CBS News.
If the referendum is approved, it would give the state’s people – through their lawmakers – the power to limit abortion practices by overturning a state Supreme Court decision in 2019 that effectively put such matters out of the people’s hands.
Under that ruling, as The Wichita Eagle explained in a July piece, “the Kansas Legislature is barred from passing laws that would place an ‘undue burden’ on access to abortion. Any abortion restrictions must clear an extremely high level of court scrutiny to become law.”
Anyone familiar with court rulings under the Roe (and later Casey) Supreme Court regime knows that “undue burden” amounted to virtually any “burden” abortion activists could get in front of a sympathetic judge.
The Kansas legislature voted to put the referendum on the ballot last year — before the Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision overturned almost 50 years of the “right” to an abortion in the United States. That put Kansas square in the crosshairs of the abortion battle and opened up the floodgates of leftist funding for the pro-abortion cause.
“With such huge influxes of cash from outsiders, those pushing to defeat the Kansas amendment have been able to blanket the airways with distortions about the legal import of the Value Them Both amendment,” Cleveland wrote.
The strategy is a standard part of the left’s playbook. In the progressive world, power flows from above, not, as the Founders intended, from the people themselves.
Faced with a grassroots campaign in Kansas against the “right” of women to kill their children in the womb (often with the equally culpable connivance of the men who’ve fathered those babies), the pro-abortion side turns to sources of funding from outside the state to convince residents inside its borders.
It’s the same tactic used by leftists like George Soros to use an overwhelming advantage in money to get progressive prosecutors into office, forcing a radical agenda of coddling criminals onto cities and residents who bear the actual burden of living in “utopia.”
Writ even larger, it’s the tactic progressives use to elect liberal U.S. senators in states that are essentially conservative.
And larger yet, the left turned to the Supreme Court for its ultimate authority to force Americans as a whole to live by rules — like abortion in 1973 and gay marriage in 2015– that would never have been approved by the ballot box.
On level ground, supporters of leftist causes know they can’t win outside their coastal strongholds, so they use millions in targeted funding to create astroturf campaigns against true grassroots movements.
Despite all that, according to a poll released July 18 by the polling firm co/efficient found the pro-life amendment was favored by 45 percent compared to 42 percent who opposed it. (The poll, taken July 17-18, sampled 1,557 likely primary voters, according to co/efficient. It had a margin of error of 2.78 percent.)
That’s no small thing. And the group Kansans for Life, which is spearheading the fight for the amendment, is undeterred — even against huge financial odds.
The pro-abortion donors “do not represent the people of Kansas or our values,” said Kansans for Life communications director Danielle Underwood, according to Cleveland.
“At this critical moment, Kansans can and must fight back against outside interests’ aggressive tactics by voting ‘yes’ on the Value Them Both Amendment,” Underwood told Cleveland.
“It is the only way to safeguard the common-sense abortion limits we already agree on and show the world our state believes in protections for both women and babies.”
They can also show the left, on behalf of the rest of America, that the real power in a state comes from the people who live in it.
If they score a victory after Tuesday’s votes are counted, every American will be a winner.