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Fri Aug 5, 2022, 01:55 PM

In Kansas, Support for Abortion Rights Didn't Just Come From the Usual Places

Some clarity is called for. I suspect that when the article says that $2.45 million was raised this year from the Archdiocese of Kansas City, Kan., it means that the parishioners in the archdiocese contributed the money, not the entity with the tax identification number known as the Archdiocese of Kansas City, Kan. "Archdiocese" is used here as metonymy.

Look it up.

In Kansas, Support for Abortion Rights Didnít Just Come From the Usual Places

Aug. 3, 2022, 7:27 p.m. ET
Mitch Smith, Lauren Fox and Elizabeth Dias

PRAIRIE VILLAGE, Kan. ó DeAnn Hupe Seib is a fiscally conservative, churchgoing Republican from rural Kansas. When faced with a ballot question about whether abortion rights ought to be removed from her stateís constitution, she voted no. So did her home, Jefferson County, which favored Donald J. Trump by a 32-point margin in 2020. ... ďI was old enough that I remember stories of women who could not get abortions or had to defy their church in order to get in and get an abortion in order to save their lives,Ē said Ms. Hupe Seib, 63, a lawyer. ďSo itís a very real issue to me, and I know it can be again.Ē

{snip}

Going into Tuesday, there were many reasons to doubt that supporters of abortion rights could fend off a well-financed effort in a reliably conservative state to open the door for lawmakers to ban or severely restrict the procedure. ... Republicans in the state hold commanding legislative majorities and have long campaigned on restricting abortion. The Roman Catholic Church donated millions of dollars to the effort to pass the amendment. And the issue was strategically placed on the August primary ballot, a time of year when Kansas Republicans usually have competitive races, but when Democrats and political independents often have little to draw them to the polls.

{snip}

The ballot referendum was rooted in a 2019 ruling by the Kansas Supreme Court that found that the right to an abortion was guaranteed by the State Constitution. Abortion in Kansas is legal up to 22 weeks but requires a waiting period and parental consent for minors. ... The abortion rights victory included overwhelming margins on Kansasí few patches of left-leaning political turf: 81 percent to 19 in the county that includes the college town of Lawrence; 74 percent to 26 in the county that includes Kansas City; and 68 percent to 32 in populous Johnson County, a suburban area that was once reliably Republican but that has trended rapidly toward Democrats since Mr. Trumpís entrance into national politics.

But the abortion rights side also won convincingly in the county that includes Wichita, a more conservative place with a long, sometimes violent, history at the center of Americaís abortion debate. Abortion rights supporters won in Topeka, the politically mixed state capital, and in Republican-leaning areas around military bases. Perhaps most surprising, they carried several rural and exurban counties where Republican candidates routinely trounce Democrats.

{snip}

Kansas is also home to a Catholic archbishop who has ardently opposed abortion and played a leading role in the ballot campaign, mobilizing Catholic voters. ... Value Them Both, a group that led the vote-yes effort, reported raising $2.45 million this year from the Archdiocese of Kansas City, Kan., which Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann leads, and about half a million from the Diocese of Wichita. Churches held vigils, and parishioners donated money, which he hoped would offer an example to other dioceses on how to engage the issue. ... Not all Catholics were persuaded.

{snip}

Mitch Smith reported from Prairie Village, Kan., and Overland Park, Kan.; Lauren Fox reported from Ottawa, Kan., and Perry, Kan.; and Elizabeth Dias reported from Washington.

Mitch Smith covers the Midwest and the Great Plains. Since joining The Times in 2014, he has written extensively about gun violence, oil pipelines, state-level politics and the national debate over police tactics. He is based in Chicago. @mitchksmith

Elizabeth Dias covers faith and politics from Washington. She previously covered a similar beat for Time magazine. @elizabethjdias

A version of this article appears in print on Aug. 4, 2022, Section A, Page 15 of the New York edition with the headline: Voters Turned Out in Huge Numbers And Crashed Through Party Lines. Order Reprints | Todayís Paper | Subscribe

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Reply In Kansas, Support for Abortion Rights Didn't Just Come From the Usual Places (Original post)
mahatmakanejeeves Aug 5 OP
Phoenix61 Aug 5 #1
Wild blueberry Aug 5 #2
Rebl2 Aug 5 #3
Phoenix61 Aug 5 #4
shrike3 Saturday #8
IbogaProject Aug 5 #5
3Hotdogs Saturday #6
shrike3 Saturday #7
3Hotdogs Saturday #9
shrike3 Saturday #10

Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 01:58 PM

1. They really need to pull the tax exempt status from churches. nt

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Response to Phoenix61 (Reply #1)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 02:16 PM

2. Second that!

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Response to Phoenix61 (Reply #1)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 05:40 PM

3. Absolutely

for large church, wealthy ones. The little church a couple doors down from me can barely keep itís doors open. Itís a United Church of Christ and no I donít attend there or any church for that matter, I donít like seeing small churches hurt by taxing them. Large wealthy churches are a different matter.

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Response to Rebl2 (Reply #3)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 05:44 PM

4. I agree with you on that. Those little churches also aren't

dumping $1,000ís in to polical campaigns.

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Response to Rebl2 (Reply #3)

Sat Aug 6, 2022, 08:07 AM

8. The UCC is pretty progressive, and therein lies the problem.


People with progressive values don't attend church. I'm not saying they should, just stating a fact. People who attend church tend to be more conservative hence the ongoing lurch to the right. I'm not telling you to attend church at all, but churches who do do the right thing aren't getting rewarded for it. They continue to shrink, while the conservative ones continue to grow.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 05:53 PM

5. Tax any lobbying and political advertising

Due to them being tax free, make that subject to corporate income tax. And tax their investments as if they were a corporate landlord, that is where that Church's wealth is.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Sat Aug 6, 2022, 12:59 AM

6. There was a quote on D.U. a few days ago.....

"The Catholic Church got kicked in the nuts."

Now that tickles my testicles.


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Response to 3Hotdogs (Reply #6)

Sat Aug 6, 2022, 08:04 AM

7. The church as a whole has more important stuff going on than what just happened in America.


Only eight percent of the RCC is in the U.S., and the American bishops are like from another planet. The Vatican's been working for years to support climate change action and the Paris Agreement. When the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops met last year, what did they say was the most important issue globally? Abortion.

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Response to shrike3 (Reply #7)

Sat Aug 6, 2022, 09:17 AM

9. I'm glad they are all nice people, concerned about the world.

Still, they have been the cause of millions of deaths, emotional pain, physical pain and poverty throughout their existence.

When they start by sending Cardial Law back to Boston for trial.....

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Response to 3Hotdogs (Reply #9)

Sat Aug 6, 2022, 03:43 PM

10. So has the United States of America.

And most of Europe. And China. And civilizations that have come and gone. And quite a lot of corporations, come to think of it.

Getting back to the point, no one kicked the RCC in the nuts. Or if they tried, the RCC probably didn't notice.

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