GOP leaders’ fight over abortion, Medicaid escalates

Senate President Susan Wagle distributes editorial defending decision to block Medicaid expansion in retribution for defeat of anti-abortion amendment.

By

State News

February 17, 2020 - 10:09 AM

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A political dispute between the Kansas Senate’s top two Republicans over abortion and Medicaid expansion has escalated.

Senate President Susan Wagle, of Wichita, distributed an editorial to newspapers across the state this weekend defending her decision earlier this month to block a bipartisan Medicaid expansion plan  drafted by Senate Majority Leader Jim Denning, of Overland Park, and Demcoratic Gov. Laura Kelly.

Wagle moved after a proposed anti-abortion amendment to the state constitution failed in the Kansas House. She and other abortion opponents have vowed to block the expansion plan until the proposed amendment gets on the ballot for voters to consider. The measure would overturn a Kansas Supreme Court decision last year declaring access to abortion a “fundamental” right under the state’s Bill of Rights.

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