Supporters of adding an amendment to ban abortions in Kansas won in Linn County but lost the election state wide. (Photo: Kansas Reflector)
MOUND CITY – While the turnout of voters in Linn County wasn’t quite as large as anticipated, those who voted sent a strong message about the abortion issue on Tuesday, Aug. 2.
Early in the week, County Clerk David Lamb said he expected as many as 4,000 ballots, a larger than usual turnout. More than 3,100 ballots were cast, likely in part to the abortion issue. Nonetheless, there were enough voters that several precincts were reporting waiting lines during the day.
According to the unofficial results, about 59 percent of Linn County voters supported adding an amendment for the state Legislature to make abortions illegal in Kansas. About 41 percent voted against the amendment.
Statewide, however, the amendment didn’t fare as well. Tuesday evening, the Secretary of State’s office reported that amendment was losing with about 60 percent of voters casting a “no” vote to 40 percent for the amendment with all but 1 percent of precincts reporting.
Rural counties like Linn County tended to vote for the amendment with more urban and suburban areas voting against it. Voters in Johnson County voted more than 2-to-1 to reject the amendment.
The constitutional amendment, as well as a 2 percent sales tax issue for the City of Linn Valley, were draws for unaffiliated voters, who voted in neither the Republican or Democratic primaries. Sixty-four unaffiliated voters cast ballots in Linn Valley, with 327 unaffiliated voters casting ballots across the county.
The number of Democratic voters totaled 456 in the primary, and while many Democratic voters were likely against the amendment, it isn’t certain that all of them voted against it. However, with 1,270 voters casting a “no” vote compared to 1,830 “yes” votes, it is clear that a substantial number of Republicans in Linn County voted against the amendment as well.