Michiganders Support the Right to Choose, James Craig Won’t Rule Out Extreme Ban Without Exemptions for Rape or Incest

LANSING — Recently, Detroit News conservative columnist Nolan Finley gave a clear-eyed view of what’s to come for Republicans as they gear up for a bitter 2022 cycle. Thanks to Texas’ regressive 6-week abortion ban that provides no exemptions for rape or incest, preserving the right to choose will now be at the forefront of voters’ minds at ballot boxes across America. 

According to Finley, and poll data he cites from Pew Research, “that’s a loser for Republicans.” Particularly among women voters “who spoiled the GOP’s [2018] hopes” and would be expected to do so again next year as they know “legislatures and governors will be deciding the future legality of abortion.”

In fact in Michigan, if Roe v. Wade were to be overturned by the Supreme Court, the state would revert to a 1930’s law that criminalizes abortion.

James Craig’s recent extreme comments on the matter — in which he refused to rule out supporting legislation that wouldn’t make exceptions for rape and incest victims — are particularly damning and irresponsible. 

Additionally, he offered a jumbled mess of a response that doesn’t inspire confidence in the slightest, saying “I don’t have a hard and fast line on it” and “I…want to give that other area some thought.”

The extremely shaky ground reproductive rights currently stands on makes it more vital than ever for every gubernatorial candidate to come clean on what they would do should they become the last line of defense for Michigan women and families. 

See excerpts from Nolan Finley below and read the full op-ed here:

Detroit News: Finley: Texas law gives Dems mid-term edge
Nolan Finley

Texas Republicans just handed back to Democrats the mid-term election advantage President Joe Biden has spent all year squandering.

By effectively making abortions illegal in the state, Gov. Greg Abbot and the Republican-controlled Legislature took the 2022 election focus…and placed it on the country’s most divisive issue: abortion.

And that’s a loser for Republicans.

A Pew Research Poll in May found 59% of Americans feel abortion should be legal in all or most cases, while 39% say it should be mostly illegal.

With a potentially landmark abortion ruling coming from the U.S. Supreme Court next summer in a Mississippi case, the uncertain fate of Roe v. Wade will give Democrats something other than Donald Trump to motivate their voters to the polls.

Abortion is an issue that drives voter turnout, particularly of women voters — two-thirds of women in the Pew survey fall into the mostly legal category. In 2018, when anti-Trump fervor sparked record turnouts, it was primarily women who spoiled the GOP’s mid-term hopes.

Should the High Court overturn Roe and send the issue back to the states, those women will return to the polls in much larger numbers, and they won’t be voting Republican. That will be especially true in state races, since Legislatures and governors will be deciding the future legality of abortion.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, recognizing the lifeline she was just tossed, is already framing the battle lines of her reelection bid around abortion.

The governor Tuesday called on the Republican-led Legislature to repeal the 1930s legislation that criminalized abortion. Should Roe be overturned, state law would likely revert to the pre-1973 status quo, meaning all abortions would be illegal in the state until new laws are adopted.

Whitmer knows GOP lawmakers will dismiss her request. But she wants to quickly establish that she’s the last line of defense of abortion rights in Michigan.

And she knows that she and Democratic gubernatorial hopefuls nationwide stand to benefit from the billions of dollars that will be raised to support pro-abortion candidates. […]

For nearly a half-century Republicans have been trying to put the Roe v. Wade genie back in the bottle. While they’ve made some progress in changing attitudes toward specific procedures such as late-term abortions, support for abortion rights in general remains strong.

They won’t win this fight by using their temporary partisan majorities to impose unpopular laws, as the lawmakers in Texas just did.

But they very likely will lose their political influence and offices by making the Republican Party unacceptable to voters who might otherwise be willing to give the GOP a try in 2022, […]

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