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An urgent e-mail from Kris Kobach, campaigning for the US Senate, states that Kansas needs our help in passing an amendment to the Kansas Constitution on abortion.

“Kansas lawmakers have an opportunity to share the truth about abortion this session, but it’s up to us to make sure they do,” Kobach said in the e-mail to constituents.

The amendment  Kobach is referring to is a knee-jerk reaction to the Kansas Supreme Court ruling that the Kansas Constitution protects a woman choosing to have an abortion. The drive to put an amendment on the August primary ballot started this week. It will have to pass both chambers of the Legislature to get on the ballot.

The amendment reads: “Because Kansans value both women and children, the Constitution of the State of Kansas does not require government funding of abortion and does not create or secure a right to abortion. To the extent permitted by the Constitution of the United States, the people, through their elected state representatives and state senators, may pass laws regarding abortion, including, but not limited to, in circumstances of pregnancy resulting from rape or incest, or when necessary to save the life of the mother.”

It sounds like it would stop or limit abortion, the truth is, Mr. Kobach, the amendment would have little to no impact. Only abortions in cases of life endangerment, rape or incest are funded by government funding (Medicaid). The amendment might result in fewer abortions for those reasons, if the Legislature passes such laws; but that’s unlikely.

Abortion is the law of the land. That isn’t going to change unless the US Supreme Court reverses Roe vs. Wade and that decision supersedes anything that would be in the state constitution. This is nothing more than political posturing.

Legislators should focus their efforts on things that do impact their constituents -- such a making sure KDOT has enough to fix highways and the state takes measures to address prison over-population.

Abortion has been something we’ve been debating over and over for decades, with no real gain in either direction. Kansas can do better than a throw-away amendment that accomplishes nothing.

— Ryan D. Wilson