Abortion debate renewed this week in Congress, could impact upcoming election

08/24/2018 07:28 PM

WASHINGTON-The abortion debate renewed in Congress this week and playing a role in some congressional races across the country. Washington reporter Eva McKend spoke with a legal expert about how the contentious issue could impact the election come November.

High drama in the Senate this week as Republican Senator Rand Paul made a failed last ditch effort to defund Planned Parenthood.

“Planned Parenthood ends the lives of about 320,000 babies each year,” said Paul.

And in the close race between Republican Congressman Andy Barr and Democrat Amy McGrath in Kentucky’s sixth congressional district, Barr is painting McGrath as too liberal for the state based in part on her prochoice views.

“It ends up being a sexy issue for those who oppose the right,” said Howard University law professor Lisa Crooms-Robinson.

Crooms-Robinson says even in years when a conservative Supreme Court nominee like Brett Kavanaugh isn’t being considered for the high court, the abortion debate routinely makes its way into congressional races but she says it often isn’t the deciding factor.

“It depends on the particulars of the district in which the race is being run. I think that it is very location specific. If you are in a place where abortion has continued to be an issue that the state legislature has spent a considerable amount of time legislating about, in those places it’s going to be an issue,” said Crooms-Robinson.

In Alabama, West Virginia and Oregon, abortion will be on the ballot this November. Those states have proposed changes to the language in their state constitutions that could affect abortion funding. Crooms-Robinson says often prochoice candidates are depicted as supporting abortion scenarios that aren’t even practical.

“Extreme examples that not anyone is going to tend to find themselves in, for example, on your way to the delivery room, and you decide in route that you want to abort the child,” sad Crooms-Robinson.

Crooms-Robinson predicts the many controversies surrounding President Trump will play a larger role in people’s decision making when they step in the booth this fall especially in states where abortion is not explicitly on the ballot.

Watch the story:

Michon Lindstrom

Michon is a producer for Pure Politics. Michon comes to Kentucky from Springfield, Illinois where she served as the statehouse reporter for the NBC affiliate. During her time in the Land of Lincoln she covered the state’s two year budget impasse and the largest school funding overall in Illinois history. Pure Politics airs weeknights at 7 and 11:30 on Spectrum News. Follow Michon on Twitter at @MichonLindstrom or reach her by email at michon.lindstrom@charter.com



  • Ben Thar wrote on August 26, 2018 09:33 PM :

    Andy Barr’s big problem is nobody takes him or this ridiculous Congress seriously. Every one of them is a clown and a swamp dweller who will say or do anything to hold onto their government job in Congress.

    What a joke — we’ve got enough laws on abortion to last us the rest of Andy Barr’s life. Is he saying he hasn’t done enough to stop abortion? How does Andy come up with a new abortion law every other year when it’s election time?

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