Dems don’t know how to disavow this one.
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Nearly three decades ago, when Democratic Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards’ wife was 20 weeks pregnant with their first child, a doctor discovered their daughter had spina bifida and encouraged an abortion. The Edwardses refused.
Now, daughter Samantha is married and working as a school counselor, and Edwards finds himself an outlier in polarized abortion politics.
“My position hasn’t changed. In eight years in the Legislature, I was a pro-life legislator,” he said. When he ran for governor, his view was the same. “I’m as consistent as I can be on that point.”
Edwards, who has repeatedly bucked national party leaders on abortion rights, is about to do it again. He’s ready to sign legislation that would ban the procedure as early as six weeks of pregnancy, before many women know they are pregnant, when the bill reaches his desk.
Louisiana’s proposal , awaiting one final vote in the state House, would prohibit abortion after a fetal heartbeat is detected, similar to laws passed in Kentucky, Mississippi, Georgia and Ohio that aim to challenge the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion. Alabama has gone even further, enacting a law that makes performing abortions a felony at any stage of pregnancy with almost no exceptions.
But the abortion bans in those other conservative states — spurred by anti-abortion activists hoping the addition of conservative judges to the Supreme Court could help overturn Roe v. Wade — were backed by Republican governors.
A rarity in his party, Edwards’ anti-abortion stance provokes angry outcries on social media from Democratic voters and disappointment within the party’s broader ranks across the country.