Approximately a year and a half after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v Wade, abortion has become a defining issue for millions of Americans and one that politicians have capitalised on.
Democrats in each state have been using abortion to drive their candidates’ campaigns and steer voters away from Republicans.
Tuesday’s results could lend some insight into how voters are making decisions based on abortion rights as the country looks to the 2024 general election next year.
Here are the states where abortion rights are part of Tuesday’s election.
Issue 1 is asking voters whether or not to enshrine an individual’s right to reproductive medical care – which includes abortion – in a proposed amendment to the state’s constitution.
The proposal protects abortion access up until a physician determines the point of viability (around 22 to 23 weeks) or if it is medically necessary to save a woman’s life or health after that point. It prohibits the state from enacting legislation that would restrict abortions before that point.
Reproductive rights advocates and voters fought to have Issue 1 appear on the ballot after the Ohio legislature passed a six-week abortion ban that did not include exceptions in cases of rape and incest.
Though the restrictive law is temporarily paused as it’s being challenged in courts, many fear that should Issue 1 fail, the state could enact the law again.
Though the question of abortion is not on the ballot, the possibility of a 15-week abortion ban is looming over voters’ heads as they cast their votes for their state legislatures.
At the moment, Virginia allows abortion up until the point of viability and after only if it is medically necessary to save the life or health of the mother. But that reproductive freedom is at risk.
Governor Glenn Youngkin has pitched the idea of the state enacting a 15-week abortion ban that includes exceptions for rape, incest and the life of the mother.
The Virginia Senate is currently controlled by Democrats and would likely block Mr Youngkin’s proposal but the House is controlled by Republicans who would side with him.
But all 140 seats of the legislature are up for grabs on Tuesday, putting extra pressure on voters to choose candidates wisely.
Voters in Pennsylvania will be electing a new state Supreme Court Justice on Tuesday which will either support Democrats’ current majority or give Republicans a potential vote against abortion access in the state.
The race for the open seat is between Democrat Dan McCaffery and Republican Carolyn Carluccio.
Though Tuesday’s decision will not change the current 4-3 Democratic majority, it could affect the long term as Democrats have three Justices up for retention in 2025.
Justices serve 10-year terms before they must run for retention to remain on the court.
Though Pennsylvania currently permits abortions up until 23 weeks (the designated point of viability), reproductive rights advocates have flagged the importance of electing Mr McCaffery in the event the law is challenged.
The court is currently looking at a case that challenges a state law that restricts the use of public funds to help women obtain abortions.
Kentuckians will be voting for their next governor on Tuesday and in a state where abortions are inaccessible, the topic has trickled its way into campaigns.
The incumbent, Governor Andy Beshear, is seeking re-election and has launched attack ads on his opponent, Republican Daniel Cameron, for his anti-abortion views.
Mr Cameron has vocalised support for a total abortion ban in the state but said he would add exceptions for rape, incest or to save a mother’s life “if the courts made us change that law.”