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Kansas Statewide Results | Interactive: National Balance of Power

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) -- Long-time Kansas voters are familiar with the Kansas Supreme Court justice questions that appear on the ballot. After every six years a justice serves, voters are asked whether or not the justice should be retained in office.

So far, voters have always said "yes" to retain the justices. But this year, there's a more noticeable effort to get voters to vote "no" on some of the justices.

What is new this time is the controversy that arose over the Kansas Supreme Court's 6-1 decision in 2019 that protected abortion rights. Two of the six justices who decided in favor of abortion rights are on the ballot. So is the one justice who dissented.

The other three justices on the ballot were appointed by Democratic Governor Laura Kelly after the 2019 decision.

The anti-abortion group Kansans for Life, through its political action committee, is actively trying to get people to vote "no" on the two justices who supported the abortion rights decision and on the three appointed by Kelly. But, the group does support the one justice who dissented. The Christian group Kansas Family Voice also only supports the one justice who dissented.

On the other side of the vote is a group called Keep Kansas Courts Impartial, which wants all the justices to be retained. The group says its goal is to keep courts fair, independent, and accountable to the people, not politicians or special interest groups. Its website asks people to "Vote Yes to Retain the fair and impartial Justices on the Kansas Supreme Court."

On the ballot

Voters will see all six justices' names in a section of the ballot called Supreme Court Justices. For each justice, a voter will be asked if that justice should be retained in office.

Voters can vote "yes" to retain the justice, "no" to not retain the justice, or skip the question and leave it blank.

These are the justices on the Nov. 8 ballot and some information about them, including their part in the abortion rights decision. They are listed in alphabetical order.

Justice Dan Biles, Kansas Supreme Court

Dan Biles

Former Democratic Governor Kathleen Sebelius appointed Biles to the Court in 2009. Biles is a native of El Dorado and currently lives in Shawnee. Biles has a journalism degree from Kansas State University. He reported for the Associated Press while attending Washburn University School of Law. Before being appointed justice, he served as a lawyer, an assistant attorney general, and a professor.

To read more about him, click here.

Biles was in the 6-1 majority in the 2019 decision that protected abortion rights.


Chief Justice Marla Luckert, Kansas Supreme Court

Marla Luckert

Luckert serves as chief justice of the Kansas Supreme Court. Former Republican Governor Bill Graves appointed her to the Court in 2002. Luckert is from Sherman County and now lives in Topeka. After Luckert graduated from Goodland High School, she attended Washburn University and Washburn University School of Law. She also completed programs at the National Judicial College and the Institute of Judicial Administration. Her previous work experience includes being a lawyer, a professor, and a judge on the Court of Appeals.

To read more about her, click here.

Luckert was in the 6-1 majority in the 2019 decision that protected abortion rights.


Justice Melissa Taylor Standridge, Kansas Supreme Court

Melissa Taylor Standridge

Democratic Governor Laura Kelly appointed Standridge to the state's high court in 2020. Standridge lives in Leawood. She got a business administration degree from the University of Kansas and worked in business for several years before attending the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law. Standridge has worked in private practice and under two federal judges. She served on the Court of Appeals from 2008 until her appointment to the Kansas Supreme Court.

To read more about her, click here.

Standridge joined the Court after the 2019 decision that protected abortion rights.


Justice Caleb Stegall, Kansas Supreme Court

Caleb Stegall

Former Republican Governor Sam Brownback appointed Stegall in 2014. Stegall is a Lawrence native and lives in rural Jefferson County. After attending Lawrence High School, he graduated from Geneva College before attending the University of Kansas School of Law. His previous professional experience includes private law practice, county attorney, and chief counsel for Brownback. In addition to being a justice, he is also an adjunct professor at the KU School of Law.

To read more about him, click here.

In 2019, Stegall was the lone dissenter in the Court's 6-1 decision that protected abortion rights.


Justice K.J. Wall, Kansas Supreme Court

Keynen 'K. J.' Wall

Democratic Governor Laura Kelly appointed Wall to the state's high court in 2020. Wall is a Scott City native who currently lives in Lawrence. Before going to the University of Kansas School of Law, he got a communications degree from Kansas State University and a master's from the University of Minnesota. Before being appointed to the Court, he practiced law for the judiciary, in-house, and in private practice.

To read more about him, click here.

Wall joined the Court after the 2019 decision that protected abortion rights.


Justice Evelyn Wilson, Kansas Supreme Court

Evelyn Wilson

Democratic Governor Laura Kelly appointed Wilson in 2020. Wilson is a native of Smith Center but now lives in Topeka. She graduated from Bethany College in Lindsborg before attending the Washburn University School of Law. Wilson served in private practice for 19 years and was an adjunct professor at Washburn. She became a district judge and then chief judge of the 3rd Judicial District, Topeka.

To read more about her, click here.

Wilson joined the Court after the 2019 decision that protected abortion rights.


Those are the six justices who are on the November ballot. The seventh justice, Eric Rosen, will be on the 2026 ballot. Rosen was also in the 6-1 majority in the 2019 decision that protected abortion rights.