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(149,430 posts)
Sat Jun 22, 2024, 01:59 PM Jun 22

Why the new Republican assurances on abortion are hard to believe [View all]

Republicans are now saying voters need not worry about a national abortion ban. It reminds me of earlier GOP assurances that Roe wouldn’t be overturned.


When it comes to abortion policy, the Democrats’ election season message is pretty straightforward: Republicans already took a sledgehammer to Americans’ reproductive rights, the argument goes, and if given a chance, GOP officials will make matters worse with a national abortion ban.

As a NOTUS report noted this week, the Republican response is similarly simple: The party is telling voters they need not fear an abortion ban passed at the federal level.

Two years after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade and let states decide their abortion policies, GOP lawmakers say they’re happy to leave it there — for now. As their Democratic opponents accuse them of undermining women’s rights on the campaign trail, Republicans are making a concerted effort to avoid discussing any federal abortion restrictions.

.....Circling back to our earlier coverage, some of us still remember the 2020 presidential debate in which Joe Biden said the Roe v. Wade precedent was on the ballot, and Donald Trump immediately pushed back. “Why is it on the ballot?” the then-Republican incumbent asked. “Why is it on the ballot? It’s not on the ballot.”

The same day, Republican Sen. Joni Ernst of Iowa insisted the likelihood of Roe being overturned was “very minimal.” She added, “I don’t see that happening.” Republican Sen. Thom Tillis used similar rhetoric during his re-election campaign in North Carolina.

The deception at least made tactical sense: The more voters realized how much damage an even-more-conservative Supreme Court was likely to do, the more Republican officials and candidates risked an electoral backlash.

And so, many in the GOP were quick to offer insincere assurances. “Just keep voting for Republicans,” the party effectively said. “There won’t be dramatic changes. Trust us. Democrats are just trying to scare you. Don’t listen to them. The status quo is fine, and it will remain intact.

When Republicans said this four years ago, they were wrong. As the party embraces eerily similar assurances in 2024, it’s tough to blame voters who’ll be skeptical.
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