Alison Grimes and the Question of Abortion

By Richard Nelson

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May 22, 2014

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Both Senator Mitch McConnell and senate candidate Allison Grimes enjoyed landslide victories in Tuesday’s primary elections. McConnell blew out Louisville businessman Matt Bevin and Grimes won almost 80% of the vote in the Democratic election, setting up a showdown between the two for the general election in which Grimes will challenge McConnell for his seat in the US Senate.

Grimes will need to be prepared for tough questions about her radical pro-abortion stance. On Monday the Weekly Standard blogged about Grimes’ interview with the National Journal, in which she came out against the late term abortion ban proposed by her opponent McConnell. The incumbent Senator has proposed criminalizing abortions after 20 weeks. Grimes’s position puts her at odds with the majority of Kentucky voters: The Weekly Standard cited a Marist poll which showed almost 70% of Kentuckians think abortion should not be legal.

In this area, Grimes is taking the lead off of President Barack Obama, who has similarly maintained radical views on abortion legislation. Grimes will find it difficult to persuade voters that she is not simply an establishment Democrat unless she moves to where the majority of citizens are on the issue of late term abortions. A ban on abortions after 20 weeks seems a modest proposal; it will be alarming indeed if Grimes is incapable of supporting even that. 

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Director, Commonwealth Policy Center