'This is a rancid sausage!' Anti-choice Republicans seethe at colleagues for going soft on total abortion bans
Anti-abortion activists hold placards infront of the US Supreme Court during the annual March for Life (AFP)

On Tuesday, POLITICO reported that a skirmish is brewing within the Republican Party over just how far to take abortion bans in light of the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade — with some Republicans wary of going too far, and many anti-abortion activists enraged at the idea of reining in their cause after having achieved a decades-long goal.

"The most fervently anti-abortion lawmakers are accusing their colleagues of capitulating on rape and incest exceptions, while those calling for compromise or moderation believe more strident Republicans are ignoring political realities," reported Megan Messerly and Alice Miranda Ollstein. "Even as Indiana on Friday became the first to pass a new abortion ban since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June, the state’s leading anti-abortion group said it was 'disappointed' lawmakers failed to remove rape and incest exceptions from the bill. A Republican state senator left his caucus in the heat of the debate on the bill, which he believed didn’t go far enough to ban the procedure. And the GOP House speaker chastised a Republican representative multiple times for suggesting his more moderate colleagues were condoning murder."

This comes amid a bruising defeat for the GOP in Kansas, a state former President Donald Trump carried by 15 points, where the party presented voters with an amendment to strip the state constitution of the right to abortion. Despite the GOP attempting to stack the deck in favor of the amendment, including running it during a primary where the vast majority of eligible voters would be Republicans, voters resoundingly rejected the amendment.

Former National Republican Congressional Committee chair Tom Davis laid out the problem for the GOP: “What Republicans need to be concerned about is: What is their branding going to be? Not just on this — we’ve already seen an erosion in the suburbs on cultural issues that have helped the Democrats. That’s the problem, when people get emboldened … it takes rational discussion off the table. That’s where we are.”

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But anti-abortion advocates who have steered policy in the GOP for years are outraged, seeing even the slightest effort to moderate proposed abortion bans as a betrayal.

“We hear around here a lot that making legislation is like making sausage, and I’m going to tell you this right here is not the kind of sausage that you want to use for your biscuits and gravy,” said West Virginia State Sen. Robert Karnes in a floor speech, after his colleagues removed criminal penalties for doctors and neglected to make rape and incest reporting requirements as strong as he wanted. “This is a rancid sausage. It’s maggot filled — very little meat in this sausage, a lot of teeth and toenails, maybe. This is not a pro-life bill. This is a pro-abortion bill.”

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