With a vote of 86 for, 35 against and 4 not voting, the House veto override of HB 2115 was successful. 17 of the 49 House Democrats and 69 of the 76 Republicans voted for override. Read the total vote tally here.
The override now heads to the Senate, where it will likely end up depending on the courage–or fear–of a single Senator. The override needs 27 votes and 13 of the 40 Senators (8 of the 9 Democrats) are solid abortion-supporters. We need not only the dependable 22 pro-lifers , but also every one of the 5 “part-time” pro-life Senators to vote for override.
This is the 5th YEAR in a row that a Kansas governor (Sebelius, and now Parkinson) has vetoed a pro-life measure –banking on the Senate opposition to falter.
Since 2006, Kansas lawmakers have passed proposals to stop the KDHE from accepting abortion reports without the legally required maternal medical documentation.
- In 2006, SB 528, addressing reporting abuse, was vetoed by Sebelius. The veto override attempt began in the Senate, but took place on the ceremonial last day of the session with many Senators absent. Thus the override failed.
- In 2007, an order for the KDHE health agency to correct the abortion reporting abuses was tacked on to the budget as a “proviso” and as such, there was no override mechanism for its veto by Sebelius.
- In 2008, the Comprehensive Abortion Reform Act contained the exact language of HB 2115, and was vetoed in its entirety by Sebelius. The override began in the Senate and failed by 2 votes.
- In 2009, SB 218 contained the exact language of HB 2115, and was vetoed by Sebelius. The override began in the Senate and failed by 2 votes.
This year, the political momentum is different, since the House has already shown the courage to pass the override of vetoed HB 2115. The question is whether years of furor over state agency collusion and illegal Kansas post-viability abortions will forge some backbone in the state Senate.