In clear debate win, Stacey Abrams vows to repeal Kemp’s ban; meanwhile, Kemp refuses to say whether he would further restrict abortion
ATLANTA — In last night’s final Georgia gubernatorial debate, reproductive rights champion Stacey Abrams again proved she is the only candidate fighting to restore and protect Georgians’ freedom. Her opponent, Gov. Brian Kemp, further demonstrated why he can’t be trusted to lead the state — or even to understand the devastating abortion ban he signed into law.
Throughout the debate, Kemp repeatedly downplayed the harm his six-week abortion ban is causing pregnant people in Georgia and misrepresented what the law actually does. He told voters to “fact-check” his position by calling his office, then desperately tried to redirect the debate away from abortion — because he knows his extreme views are deeply out of touch with what most Georgians believe and want for their state.
Statement from Amy Kennedy, spokesperson for Planned Parenthood Votes in Georgia:
“With just over a week until Election Day, the stakes for Georgia couldn’t be higher and the choice for our next governor couldn’t be clearer: Stacey Abrams knows abortion is health care and that there is no room for politics in personal medical decisions. Anti-abortion rights zealots like Brian Kemp — who don’t even understand biology, let alone the impact of the bans they sign into law — simply cannot be trusted with power over other people’s health and lives. Planned Parenthood Votes will continue to do everything we can to make sure Georgians know that Stacey Abrams will restore and defend their rights while Brian Kemp will try to further erode them.”
Notably, Kemp also refused to say if he would sign additional abortion restrictions into law. In stark contrast, Abrams vowed to repeal Kemp’s dangerous and unpopular six-week ban and “restore bodily autonomy to the women of Georgia."
WATCH: Brian Kemp refuses to say whether he would further restrict abortion
Kemp signed the six-week ban in 2019, but it first took effect in July 2022 when a federal court unblocked it shortly after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, allowing states to ban abortion. Since then, Georgians past the earliest stages of pregnancy have been denied essential, time-sensitive health care and are instead forced to flee their state for abortion or carry pregnancies against their will.
As only Abrams pointed out during the debate, this is especially dangerous in a state like Georgia, which already suffers a severe health care provider shortage: 82 of the state’s 159 counties lack a single OBGYN, and more than a third of counties have no pediatrician. Nearly one in five women of reproductive age in Georgia is uninsured — largely due to Kemp’s continued refusal to expand Medicaid — and Black women in the state experience maternal mortality and pregnancy complications at a rate more than two times that of white women.
“Brian Kemp does not have a plan for the lives of the women who are being forced to carry pregnancies to term,” Abrams said last night. She also reminded voters that Kemp’s abortion ban threatens Georgians who experience pregnancy loss with potential investigation — women like Abrams’ own sister, who Abrams said was repeatedly questioned after suffering a miscarriage.
“The tragic stories of miscarriage should not be political fodder, and they should not be fodder for investigations,” Abrams said. “Women deserve the right to control their bodies. They should not be worried whether the knock on the door is the sheriff coming to ask them if they have had an illegal abortion.”
Abrams represents the majority of Georgians who believe that abortion is a personal medical decision, and “that decision should not be adjudicated by men in the state legislature, but by a woman and her doctor,” she said on the debate stage. “I will stand in that space and defend women with every breath in my body.”
Planned Parenthood Votes is an independent expenditure political committee registered with the Federal Election Commission and an independent committee registered with the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission.
Paid for by Planned Parenthood Votes, 123 William St, NY NY 10038. Not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.