Arizona GOP’s latest abortion strategy: Restrict, restrict, restrict

Arizona GOP’s latest abortion strategy: Restrict, restrict, restrict

After a conservative majority of the Arizona Supreme Court ruled April 9 to uphold an antiquated near-total abortion ban from 1864, the shockwaves on both sides of the political aisle were immediate and obvious. Democrats decried the court’s decision, vowing to redouble efforts to pass an amendment to the state’s constitution. If passed, the Arizona Abortion Access Act would effectively negate the court’s ruling and guarantee abortion access to all Arizona citizens.

Republicans faced a far different political quandary. Sensing dire peril to their electoral prospects in November, they suddenly found themselves furiously backtracking on their previous hardline positions. Many of them clumsily searched for the right words to straddle the chasm between criticizing the court’s draconian ruling while maintaining their fierce opposition to allowing patients to make their own reproductive decisions. 

The overwhelmingly negative response to the court’s ruling could have provided a teachable moment for Republicans, an opportunity to seriously reassess the forced-birth credo that they’ve clung to for decades,  They’ve instead chosen a different course, one that underscores just how utterly contemptuous they are of their own state’s citizens. Rather than acknowledge the unpopularity of their anti-choice position, they’ve decided to try to dupe Arizona’s voters instead.

According to a leaked PowerPoint presentation prepared by Arizona House GOP general counsel Linley Wilson, Republicans’ best course is to deceive Arizonans by forcing them to wade through one, two, or even three competing anti-choice initiatives in order to “dilute” support to amend the state constitution in favor of abortion rights.

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