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Lindsey Graham Just Introduced A Federal Abortion Ban–And Everyone's Making The Same Joke

Lindsey Graham Just Introduced A Federal Abortion Ban–And Everyone's Making The Same Joke
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South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham has come under fire since introducing legislation that would institute a federal ban on abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy, reigniting concerns expressed by Democrats and progressives in the months since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, the 1973 landmark decision that once protected a person's right to choose reproductive health care without excessive government restriction.

While announcing the legislation, Graham said that voting for Republicans in November's midterm elections is necessary if voters want to see abortion curtailed beyond the state level, saying that if the GOP "take back the House and the Senate, I can assure we'll have a vote."

Graham added that if Democrats "are in charge, I don’t know if we’ll ever have a vote on our bill.”

You can hear what he said in the video below.

Graham is correct in saying that if Democrats remain in charge, there is virtually no chance that his legislation will move forward. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer—a New York Democrat—has focused on preserving abortion access, a clarion call that has been taken up by virtually all members of his party.

But, as The New York Times noted in its own coverage of Graham's proposed abortion ban, while "an effort to find a politically palatable position for Republicans after the court’s decision that could insulate them from a voter backlash," does what Republicans have wanted to avoid, which is to show "voters that their choice in November is between supporting a Democratic majority that wants to preserve abortion access and handing control of Congress to Republicans who are seeking to ban the procedure."

That is exactly the joke that much of the Twitterverse was making. Who knew Graham could be such an effective campaigner for the opposing party?

Others slammed Graham and the Republican Party for advocating for a national ban.

Republicans have faced significant pushback in the weeks since the Supreme Court overturned Roe, with one prominent GOP candidate—venture capitalist Blake Masters, the nominee in this year's Senate race in Arizona—making headlines after he was caught altering his campaign website to soften his position on abortion.

Nowhere was this pushback more apparent in recent weeks than when Kansas voters secured a win for reproductive rights activists after voting to enshrine reproductive rights in the state constitution, the result of an effort to ensure the state—typically Republican and conservative—remains a safe haven for abortion in the Midwest.

Democrats, including Pat Ryan, a county executive in New York’s Hudson Valley, also made gains in primaries around the country over the past month. Ryan fended off a Republican opponent by stressing his commitment to abortion rights, making it central to his campaign in a district that Republicans saw as a prime pick-up opportunity. Throughout several special elections since the Dobbs decision in late June, Democrats from the Hudson Valley in New York to the red wilderness of Alaska have outperformed expectations, largely seen as a reaction to the radical Supreme Court decision.