Political Earthquake In Kansas Bodes Well For Nebraska Democrats

Dennis Crawford
4 min readAug 4, 2022


We won in Kansas. We must remain vigilant. Sprint to the finish line!

The decision by the GOP controlled Supreme Court to throw out Roe is a game changer in election 2022. The first election after this miscarriage of justice was the Nebraska House CD01 election on June 28. State Senator Patty Pansing Brooks shocked the political world when she outperformed all previous Democrats candidates in CD01 going back to 1974. Fellow State Senator Mike Flood (R) narrowly defeated Pansing Brooks (D) 53% to 47% in a congressional district that Trump won 54% to 43% in 2020. In the last open seat House race in CD01 in 2004, Jeff Fortenberry beat Matt Connealy 54% to 43%.

The Nebraska House CD01 special election was the just first sign that the political landscape has changed. This trend was further confirmed in an August 2 referendum in which deep red Kansas voted by a 59% to 41% to maintain the right to privacy. The election had been forecast as too close to call but the pro-choice forces won a blowout!

This shocking victory was largely due to a huge Democratic turnout. The Kansas Secretary of State’s office predicted that turnout would be 36% of the voters. Instead, the turnout was a surprising 50%! The number of votes cast on the right to privacy referendum came close to the approximately one million votes cast in the general election in 2018, when a “blue wave” swept the Democrats to a landslide victory. In contrast, only 470,000 people voted in the 2018 Kansas primaries.

It wasn’t just Democrats who voted in favor of women’s health care freedom — a significant minority of Republicans voted with the Democrats.

Steve Kornacki Tweet:

“How many GOP No votes were there in Kansas?

One way to look at it:

276,383 votes in Dem primary

463,592 in GOP primary

168,772 unaffiliated voting in just the referendum

Dem + Unaffiliated votes = 445,155

Total No vote: 534,136

So that suggests at least 20% of R’s were No’s.”

“Republicans had arranged for the referendum to fall on the day of a primary, which traditionally attracts higher percentages of hard-line Republicans; and they had written the question so that a “yes” vote would remove abortion protections and a “no” would leave them in place.” Heather Cox Richardson. On election day, a GOP political action committee sent out thousands of dishonest texts that lied about which vote was which.

The Republicans didn’t only lie about the convoluted ballot language, GOP canvassers tried to assure voters that a “yes” vote wouldn’t change anything or lead to an abortion ban. This dishonesty shows that the GOP wasn’t confident in the outcome and made the women’s freedom landslide even more amazing.

The Kansas referendum on privacy rights reveals that a key feature of conservatism is how almost all of its bedrock policies melt under the light of personal experience. It’s interesting to note how rarely strict conservative principles survive direct personal experience with a social problem. The problem for the GOP is that many conservative ideas are unpopular once they aren’t entirely abstract.

It is time to reevaluate the conventional wisdom about the midterms after this vote in Kansas. People are mad as hell at having their rights taken away. Senator Brian Schatz (D-HI). Forget the red wave. Pollsters should start looking for whether there might be a pro-choice wave. Jonathan Alter tweet.

An August 3 Monmouth poll indicates that the Democrats have the momentum. The Democrats currently lead 50% to 43% in the generic Congressional ballot. That’s up from a 47% to 47% tie in June.

This sea change in public opinion opens the door for Nebraska Democrats to win on November 8. Already, the leading Republican candidates for office have committed themselves to reactionary, near total abortion bans.

Here is a list of some of Representative Don Bacon’s (R-NE) radical positions:

–Wants to make abortion illegal even in cases of rape and incest or to prevent the death of a mother;

–Defended Texas’ extreme six-week abortion ban with no exceptions for rape and incest that puts a bounty on anyone who helps a woman get an abortion;

Nebraska CD01 U.S. House Representative Mike Flood is as extreme as Bacon. In the Nebraska legislature, Flood co-sponsored a near total abortion ban that contained no exceptions for rape and incest. Nebraska GOP gubernatorial nominee Jim Pillen would sign this ban into law if it reached his desk. What this means is that Mike Flood, Don Bacon and Jim Pillen want 10 year old girls to bear the child of their rapist. They are dangerous radicals.

All of this is good news for Nebraska Democrats. Patty Pansing Brooks, Tony Vargas and Carol Blood all support the right to choose and women’s freedom. They will fight hard to protect our hard won freedoms from the radical right.

It’s progress v. radicalism in 2022. Freedom is on the ballot in 2022. Vote for Carol Blood for governor! Vote for Patty Pansing Brooks in Nebraska CD01! Vote for Tony Vargas in Nebraska CD02! Vote for David Elise Nebraska CD03!



Dennis Crawford

I’m an aspiring historian, defender of democracy and a sports fan.