Voters in Ohio today voted to enshrine abortion rights in the state constitution and to legalize recreational marijuana. With about 80% of the votes counted, both measures were tallied at about 56% to 44% for and against. The pro-abortion vote came despite furious efforts by conservatives to block the vote and then to sabotage the plebiscite by making the question confusingly-worded; the former effort failed and the latter prevailed, but voters in the Buckeye State were not fooled.
The win for women’s rights followed similar referendum outcomes in deep-red Kansas and Kentucky, where the Democratic governor, Andy Beshear, was re-elected in the governor’s race Tuesday. CNN:
Ohioans approved a ballot measure to protect abortion rights in the state constitution, CNN projects, in the latest win for abortion advocates since the overturning of Roe v. Wade. The vote is yet another sign abortion access is a key issue for voters across party lines ahead of the 2024 presidential election. In another significant vote, Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear is projected to be reelected in Kentucky. He will defeat GOP Attorney General Daniel Cameron, who had the backing of former President Donald Trump and Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell.
The GOP did score a win, though, in Tate Reeves, the Republican governor of Mississippi, who was also re-elected. That his Democratic opponent fancied himself a chance in Mississippi, however, was discomfiting enough for GOP leaders plainly upset by the Ohio result.
Asked by CNN if he’s concerned his party is on the wrong side of public opinion on the issue, House Speaker Mike Johnson — who has made his anti-abortion views central to his political identity — said: “I’m not going to comment on that.”
The other big question of the night is control of Virginia’s legislature, where, as of 10:30 p.m. eastern time, Democrats appear to be doing well, have already held the Senate, and are on the cusp of taking the House. Semafor’s Dave Weigel writes that progressive primary wins may move this potential majority “a bit to the left,” too.
Author: Rob Beschizza