GOP Governor SCHOOLS ABC, Klobuchar on Federalism of Abortion Limits

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Abortion was the topic of the day for the liberal media and their network Sunday shows. But on ABC’s This Week, Republican Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson calmly and astutely pushed back on the hyperbolic screeds. Throughout his interview with fill-in host Martha Raddatz, he schooled her on conservative policy towards protecting the right to life, his goal to further support mothers and the children saved by his state’s abortion limitations, and he championed to keep the debate in the states.

Ahead of his interview, Raddatz spoke with Democratic Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) who proved she didn’t understand federalism. She decried America having a “patchwork of laws” around abortion and asked “how can that be[?]”

Well, that was the first thing that Hutchinson set out to confront. He argued “in terms of Arkansas law, our law simply expresses the will of the people of Arkansas, Senator Klobuchar really didn’t address that. And the fact is, each state has differing views on where we should have on abortion restrictions.”

And as Hutchinson was defending his state’s trigger law, Raddatz interrupted to press him with what she might have assumed was a gotcha question. “What would you say to those women who seek an abortion, who don’t have the money to travel, who don’t have the money to raise a child, what would you say to them?”

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But Hutchinson had an answer for her that she probably didn’t expect. Essentially confronting the false liberal narrative that Republicans don’t care about the mother or child after birth, he explained: “You have to understand that, you have to provide services. And I believe that we want to increase the services for maternal health, to increase the services for adoption services as well.”

Raddatz didn’t seem to like that he had an answer for her, so as he was talking about his personal opinion about limitations, she interrupted to press him… on his personal opinion about limitations:

HUTCHINSON: Right now, we don’t have rape and incest as exceptions under the Arkansas trigger law, but I think that will be a part of the debate. I’ve always expressed–

RADDATZ (interrupts): Would you like to see those exceptions?

HUTCHINSON: — those exceptions are important. Yes, I expressed whenever I signed the law, that I would prefer the rape and incest exceptions to be in there.

When asked, “Why do you support those exceptions?” Hutchinson noted, “even though we believe life begins at conception that we try to save lives, the life of the unborn and to do that and to gain public acceptance.”

Hutchinson then said it was important to listen to the public and their desire for some exceptions. “And so, there’s the principle involved of life begins at conception in difficult circumstances, but those are accommodations made to get public acceptance of the limitations and saving more unborn lives and that’s the object of it,” he said

With Raddatz pushing the narrative that conservatives wanted a national ban, Hutchinson denounced it as “inconsistent with what we’ve been fighting for four decades. Which is, we wanted the Roe vs. Wade reversed and the authority returned to the states.”

He concluded by explaining the constitutionality of abortion being a states’ issue since Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito said so in his draft opinion:

If you look at a constitutional or a national standard that goes against that thrust of the states having prerogative. And secondly, I think there are some constitutional issues of a national standard as well as to what the authority under the Constitution to enact that.

And Martha, there’s a fundamental point that everybody describes this as right. If the court reverses Roe vs. Wade they’re saying the Constitution does not provide that. Which returns it to the states. And to me that makes sense under the Constitution. And that’s where the vigorous debate is going to be.

And with the schooling going on for over five minutes, Raddatz then ended the interview.

The failed pressing from the left by Raddatz was made possible because of lucrative sponsorships from CarMax. Their contact information is linked.

The transcript is below, click “expand” to read:

ABC’s This Week
May 8, 2022
9:19:42 a.m. Eastern

(…)

MARTHA RADDATZ: Governor, if as expected Roe is overturned, the bill you signed last year banning abortion in your state would go into effect immediately as soon as your state attorney general signs it, the only exception in that bill is the life of the mother. What would you tell these women in your state who cannot afford to travel to get an abortion, who cannot afford to raise a child, or those who have been raped or are the victims of incest?

GOV. ASA HUTCHINSON (R-AR): Well, thank you, Martha, and Happy Mother’s day to everyone.

And in terms of Arkansas law, our law simply expresses the will of the people of Arkansas, Senator Klobuchar really didn’t address that. And the fact is, each state has differing views on where we should have on abortion restrictions.

In Arkansas, it’s a policy of Arkansas that we protect the life of the unborn. And so, yes, if Roe vs. Wade is reversed that we would have the trigger law in place to protect the life of the unborn. This is important to go after and discuss this issue with conviction. And it’s divided our country and that division has been going on for decades and it will continue after whatever decision the Supreme Court renders.

RADDATZ (interrupts):  Governor, I want to go back to my question about those women. What would you say to those women who seek an abortion, who don’t have the money to travel, who don’t have the money to raise a child, what would you say to them?

HUTCHINSON: Well, first of all, again, that’s where your heart goes out to them, I’ve had to deal with those very difficult circumstances of rape and incest as governor. And it’s difficult. You have to understand that, you have provide services. And I believe that we want to increase the services for maternal health, to increase the services for adoption services as well.

And so, we want to invest those areas that will help those women with very difficult circumstances of the pregnancy. But secondly, I think to your point, the rape and incest exceptions will continue to be a part of the debate. Right now, we don’t have rape and incest as exceptions under the Arkansas trigger law, but I think that will be a part of the debate. I’ve always expressed–

RADDATZ (interrupts): Would you like to see those exceptions?

HUTCHINSON: — those exceptions are important. Yes, I expressed whenever I signed the law, that I would prefer the rape and incest exceptions to be in there. And even though we have the trigger law, I expect those exceptions to be part of the debate in the future even though we’re going to immediately going to go to restrict abortions with exception of the life of the mother in danger.

RADDATZ: Why do you support those exceptions?

HUTCHINSON: Well, it’s been, even though we believe life begins at conception that we try to save lives, the life of the unborn and to do that and to gain public acceptance. Those exceptions are what generally the public has insisted upon as being reasonable exceptions to abortion limitations.

And so, there’s the principle involved of life begins at conception in difficult circumstances, but those are accommodations made to get public acceptance of the limitations and saving more unborn lives and that’s the object of it.

RADDATZ: And Governor, you tweeted that you hope the court returns to authority to the state. Mitch McConnell told U.S. Today, it’s possible Republicans will pursue a national ban. Would you oppose that?

HUTCHINSON: I think that’s inconsistent with what we’ve been fighting for four decades. Which is, we wanted the Roe vs. Wade reversed and the authority returned to the states. And so, as a matter of principle, that’s where it should be.

If you look at a constitutional or a national standard that goes against that thrust of the states having prerogative. And secondly, I think there are some constitutional issues of a national standard as well as to what the authority under the Constitution to enact that.

And Martha, there’s a fundamental point that everybody describes this as right. If the court reverses Roe vs. Wade they’re saying the Constitution does not provide that. Which returns it to the states. And to me that makes sense under the Constitution.

And that’s where the vigorous debate is going to be. That is where we’re going to face a lot of concerns on the compassion side. And states are going to make different determinations of it. But the people are going to express through their representatives exactly the direction they want to go. And to me, that makes sense and I think it makes sense under our Constitution.   

RADDATZ: Okay, thanks so much for joining us this morning, Governor.

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