Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R) on Sunday insisted victims of rape and incest ought to be allowed to have abortions regardless of him signing a so-called set off regulation that outlaws practically all abortions in his state, together with these ensuing from incest or rape.
Hutchinson, when confronted about his conflicting stance in an interview with CNN’s “State of the Union,” mentioned when he signed that bill in 2019, he made it recognized that he didn’t completely agree with it.
“The life of the mother, and rape and incest are two exceptions that I believe should have been added,” Hutchinson advised host Dana Bash. He blamed his state’s Republican-majority legislature for leaving these exceptions out of the invoice, which solely permits abortion in circumstances of medical emergency.
Hutchinson mentioned if the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade ― the landmark 1973 resolution that expanded entry to abortion nationwide ― he thinks his state’s abortion regulation “could be revisited.”
Bash pressed that such a reconsideration could not occur and, if it does, there would nonetheless be a interval within the meantime during which rape and incest victims legally wouldn’t be permitted an abortion.
“You wanted the legislature in Arkansas to put those exceptions in. They didn’t. Your term is almost up. What makes you think you can change it? And if you can’t, that means that … 11- and 12-year-olds may be in this situation in a very real way in just a couple of months potentially,” she mentioned.
“Those are heartbreaking circumstances,” Hutchinson responded. “We’re trying to return that authority to the states, and to reduce abortions but, whenever you see real-life circumstances like that, that debate is going to continue and the will of the people may or may not change, but it’s going to come back to the states’ flexibility on that.”
He added that he believes his state’s constituents perceive the “importance” of those exceptions for permitting abortions and that he thinks it will likely be revisited.
“There’s no guarantee of that but the public opinion does matter whenever you come to your elected representatives,” he mentioned.