Wednesday, August 3, 2022

The Night the Second Amendment Fell in Kansas

      No, not that second amendment. 
      I'm talking about Amendment Two on the Kansas ballot last night, that steaming, writhing pile of shit that was so confusingly-written that most people who'd read it could hardly make sense of it (and that was by design, trust me) and that was roundly and thoroughly thrown back into the right wing hinterlands where it belongs.
     The right wingers who'd crafted this referendum were counting on following Alabama, Louisiana, Tennessee, and West Virginia in seriously eroding abortion access in the Sunflower State, since over the past decade the aforementioned states had already established there was no right to abortion under the state constitutions.
     They were wrong. 
     Amendment Two failed by at least 20 points thanks in large part to not only a vigorous coalition of pro-choice groups but also the outrage of women in post-Roe Kansas who showed up to the polls last night in sufficient numbers to bring the voter turnout to just over 50%, which, in an apathetic country like the US, is pretty damned good if not amazing in a midterm year.
     So, is the political punditocracy correct in interpreting this as a bellwether in November's elections? Oh, you're damned skippy.
     Overturning Roe v Wade, the nearly half century year-old Supreme Court ruling that struck down abortion bans across the country, was supposed to be the right wing's big wedge issue, the hood ornament issue that was supposed to define the 2022 midterms.
     That it has turned out to be but not in the way they imagined and we saw the first salvo in Kansas last night.
     From the time the Alito draft opinion was leaked in early May, pro-choice activists went on a red-toothed frenzy, and for good reason, and women across the country were outraged and women make up just over half the electorate. Granted, not all those women are Democrats and progressives but if there was any one issue that can and will get them to the polls in sufficient numbers between now and November, it'll be the axing of Roe v Wade.
     Roe v. Wade's overturning is the very definition of a Pyrrhic victory. A Pyrrhic victory is defined as winning a battle or war but when the losses incurred are too great to make victory meaningful.
    Again, this was supposed to be the Trojan Horse that would carry the right wing into majorities in both chambers of Congress. "Look what we did for you, people!", despite that poll after poll proves that the majority of Americans want access to abortion services.
     The GOP was robbed of its Trojan Horse, its big hood ornament issue that was supposed to get them in greater abundance in the halls of power. But when the Alito draft ruling came out three months ago, Republicans immediately realized this was something on which they couldn't campaign. That's why hardly any of them have mentioned it, even the ones running for re-election. It's a nonstarter.
     And last night's failed referendum, with its deliberately confusing, misleading language proved it. The right wing had armed themselves with a magnificent weapon- A huge blunderbuss that, when used, will almost surely blow up in their faces.


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