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Will Kansas voters end abortion rights?

Kansas voters will soon decide whether to strip abortion rights from the state constitution, and possibly open the door to a total ban. Plus, what the "ghost story" of "Doc Annie" Smith could reveal about the last time abortion was illegal in Missouri.

Advance voting has already begun for the Kansas primary election on August 2, which includes a constitutional amendment that would remove the right to an abortion and allow Republican lawmakers to pass an overall ban in the state. The political fight has ignited protests, contentious campaigns and a flood of political financing. Reporter Dylan Lysen of the Kansas News Service spoke with those on both sides of the amendment.

Missouri's recent "trigger ban" is not the first time that abortion has been outlawed in the state. The first set of restrictions came in 1825, forcing many to seek them out illegally. Enter "Doc Annie" Smith, a physician turned "ghost story" whose actions earned her macabre fame and possibly saved many lives. From the KCUR podcast A People's History of Kansas City, Mackenzie Martin uncovers the truth about this Missouri physician.

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Kansas City Today is hosted by Nomin Ujiyediin. It is produced by Byron Love, Trevor Grandin, and KCUR Studios and edited by Gabe Rosenberg and Lisa Rodriguez.

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I’m a veteran investigative reporter who came up through newspapers and moved to public media. I want to give people a better understanding of the criminal justice system by focusing on its deeper issues, like institutional racism, the poverty-to-prison pipeline and police accountability. Today this beat is much different from how reporters worked it in the past. I’m telling stories about people who are building significant civil rights movements and redefining public safety. Email me at lowep@kcur.org.
Trevor Grandin is a contributing producer for KCUR Studios.
As an on-demand producer, I am focused on using my skills and experiences across multiple digital applications, platforms and media fields to create community focused audio, video and on-demand products for KCUR Studios. The media that I produce aims to inform, entertain and connect with the Kansas City metro area as we continue to learn from each other. Email me at byronlove@kcur.org.
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