Kansans fiercely debate first post-Roe vote on abortion

A number of other organizations on either side of the issue have separately campaigned and raised funds on the amendment.

After the Supreme Court’s ruling, many more people suddenly took notice of the amendment, said Melinda Lavon, a midwife who helped organize a campaign to vote against it, including text messaging blitzes and events in rural areas. “People had a lot of emotions about it and they put it to good use.”

John Markert, who supports the amendment, said he was happy with the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision but wasn’t sure it would help his side in the vote. Along the route where he rides his bike several times a week in Lenexa, another Kansas City suburb, more and more road signs have appeared on either side of the issue.

“It brought everything to the fore,” said Markert, who was retired from the mortgage industry and who said his opposition to abortion in almost all cases was motivated by his Christian faith. “If Roe vs. Wade wouldn’t have been upset, I think ‘Vote Yes’ would have been ‘more likely to win. He added: “I don’t know if it’s now.”

As Election Day approached, the rhetoric heated up. Campaign placards on both sides have been stolen or destroyed, according to police and organizers. In the Kansas City suburb of Overland Park, vandals targeted a Catholic church this month, splattering buildings and a statue of Mary with red paint, an episode police have linked to the abortion debate.

Twice in the past few weeks someone tore down signs supporting the amendment at Faith Baptist Church in Salina, Kansas, pastor Jesse Rowland said. A third sign has been placed in the cemetery.

“It’s a bit more of trench warfare – everyone is entrenched on one side or the other,” Mr Rowland said. “No one is talking, really, from what I’ve observed.”

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