Washington, DC – With three weeks to go until Election Day, the stakes for reproductive freedom are front and center in races across the country. Debate stages from the midwest to the southeast are revealing the stark contrasts between anti-abortion rights candidates and reproductive health champions.
Here’s a quick review of some of the stand-out moments from the previous week's debates:
MICHIGAN (Gov. Gretchen Whitmer v. Tudor Dixon): During Michigan’s gubernatorial debate, the first topic of the night was abortion rights, where the contrast between Gov. Whitmer and Dixon was striking. Gov. Whitmer continued to advocate for the health and rights of Michiganders and promised to never stop fighting for abortion access. Dixon, on the other hand, tried to hide her radical anti-abortion agenda, falsely claiming that she would have no influence over abortion laws as governor — which was quickly fact-checked by Gov. Whitmer.
- Quote of the Debate: Gov. Whitmer: “Mrs. Dixon is either woefully under informed about the office she’s running for, or she’s lying to you.”
WISCONSIN (Mandela Barnes v. Sen. Ron Johnson): In the second debate between Sen. Ron Johnson and Mandela Barnes, Johnson attempted to run from his anti-abortion record, while Barnes reaffirmed his commitment to protect abortion rights and put families and communities first.
- Quote of the Debate: Mandela Barnes: “Women’s lives and women’s health are on the line.”
WISCONSIN (Gov. Tony Evers v. Tim Michels): Similarly, in the governor’s race, Tim Michels tried to walk back his support of the state’s archaic 1849 abortion ban. But his blatant flip-flopping further demonstrates that he will always put his interests above the health and safety of Wisconsinites. Gov. Evers made clear his respect for people's right to control their own bodies and make their own medical decisions.
- Quote of the Debate: Gov. Evers: “Women should have the ability and the right to make decisions about their health care, including their reproductive health care, and that includes abortion.”
GEORGIA (Sen. Raphael Warnock v. Herschel Walker): Friday’s debate served as yet another reminder that Sen. Raphael Warnock is the only capable candidate in the race, prepared to serve Georgians and stand up for their reproductive rights. Meanwhile, Herschel Walker, a hypocritical opponent of reproductive health and rights, supports a total ban on abortion without exceptions. He repeated his dangerous, out-of-touch views, spouted anti-abortion lies and misinformation, and attacked Georgians’ access to basic reproductive health care.
GEORGIA (Stacey Abrams vs. Gov. Brian Kemp): In last night’s Georgia gubernatorial debate, moderators affirmed that a majority of Georgians support legal abortion, and Stacey Abrams and her campaign reiterated that Brian Kemp's abortion ban is a continued danger to Georgians' lives.
NEW HAMPSHIRE (Sen. Maggie Hassan v. Don Bolduc): The choice between Sen. Maggie Hassan and Don Bolduc became even starker during today’s Mount Washington Valley Chamber of Commerce Debate. When asked about abortion rights, Don Bolduc claimed, “Dobbs didn’t reverse Roe v. Wade.” Not only is Bolduc incorrect — the Dobbs opinion explicitly names the reversal of Roe — but by deliberately distorting the Supreme Court’s ruling he hopes to downplay his anti-abortion record. Sen. Hassan, on the other hand, spoke clearly to the devastation pregnant people and their families suffer from abortion bans — including New Hampshire’s own ban on abortion after 24 weeks.
- Quote of the Debate: Sen. Hassan: “What Don Bolduc has described does not happen. What does happen is that women in difficult circumstances are unable to get medical care… New Hampshire’s abortion ban had no exception for fetal anomaly and prevented women from getting care. Politicians like Don Bolduc have no place in the examination room.”
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