Dear friends and supporters:
This year saw a historically low number of bills pass through the Missouri General Assembly; maybe that's for the best as much of what has passed has been bad for citizens in all parts of the state.
Today, on the final day of session and following the State Senate's decision to take their final vote at 4am, the House passed one of the most restrictive and dangerous anti-choice bills in the nation. The bill outlaws abortions after 8 weeks (which is frequently not enough time for a woman to know she may be pregnant) and has no exemptions for rape or incest. This is generally viewed by voters to be too extreme; only 18% of voters feel this way, but every Republican in the House voted for the bill except one. Every Republican in Jackson County voted for it in every form in both the House and Senate.
While abortion has always been a difficult and divisive issue, this bill and others passed in Georgia, Alabama and Ohio this year show that the Republican party is unified in taking away the rights of women. Many of us are lucky to be represented by advocates for common sense on this issue including Rep. Barbara Washington of Kansas City who stated on the floor that the bill had nothing to do with being "pro-life" was was entirely about forcing "anti-choice" beliefs on citizens. Rep. Greg Razer was passionate in saying, “don’t say you a pro life when people are dealing with mental health issues but lawmakers do nothing. Don’t say you are pro life when you allow nothing to be done about opioids. Don’t say you are pro life when gay people don’t have protections.” Those were just some of the areas Razer noted the legislature didn't come up with any solutions to this session. Republican's fundamental misunderstanding of "choice" reached a shocking climax when a Representative claimed most rape was "consensual rape," a term he later backed down from after sharp backlash in the chamber.
Democrats will not regain a majority in Jefferson City next year. It's going to take time and a lot of work but it can be done. We have some great office holders, volunteers and staff that all need support year-round. Please consider donating to the Jackson County Democrats (all of our money stays here in Jackson County) or signing up to volunteer. Good government can come back to Jefferson City, but we're going to have to work for it. Republicans have made it clear they won't give it to us, so now we'll find new people to replace them one seat at a time.