Dan Rather finds optimism in a year of fringe right-wing political candidates
Dan Rather via Facebook

Dan Rather and Elliot Kirschner penned a column about the results of the Kansas ballot initiative focusing on the fact that something good has finally happened amid all of the challenges and injustices that Americans have dealt with over the past several years.

"Good times can feel fleeting, like momentary distractions from the real work of life, which is more struggle and heartbreak than satisfaction and happiness," the men wrote, explaining that progress forward can feel like a crawl.

Meanwhile, those Republicans who pretend in public to be loyalists of Donald Trump bash him in private so they can "co-opt the federal judiciary, and especially the Supreme Court."

Senate Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) twisted the rules and stole a Supreme Court Justice all so that laws could be changed not to the democratic process or elected leaders, but through appointed extremists.

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"This is why what happened in Kansas yesterday is so important," the men explained. "A state that Donald Trump won by almost 15 points sent shockwaves across the nation as voters turned out in record numbers to protect abortion rights. Many of you likely know how the state Supreme Court had ruled that this right was enshrined in the state’s constitution and that anti-abortion forces had concocted a confusing ballot referendum to try to change that."

Instead, the measure failed, and Kansas lawmakers will never be able to supersede the ruling. The win wasn't merely for those who want the government out of their personal lives, or those who value privacy, it's for anyone who desperately needs reproductive healthcare not only in Kansas but in a region that is banning access to abortion.

"One wonders what would happen if those states had to put the matter before their voters, as Kansas had to do," the columnist speculated.

It may be the next steps after Kansas shut down the attempt to overturn privacy that other states can build initiatives that put privacy back on the ballot. Even for states that prioritize "life" to begin at conception, the voters could decide whether the government will have access to their private medical information and allow their state government to make healthcare decisions for citizens.

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Republicans have been anticipating that due to President Joe Biden's job approval ratings, Americans would usher in a kind of red tsunami. What they may not have considered, however, is just how much more voters hate the idea of "Trumpism," political violence, white supremacy and a slew of other things being witnessed in the GOP.

"It is clear that the Supreme Court’s abortion ruling has altered our political landscape dramatically," they wrote. "But it isn’t the only factor that could swell Democratic turnout."

Read the full column at Dan Rather's substack.