Here’s what Democratic candidate Katie Hobbs says about Arizona abortion laws

Oct 6, 2022, 10:46 AM | Updated: Oct 7, 2022, 12:04 pm

(Facebook Photo/Katie Hobbs)...

(Facebook Photo/Katie Hobbs)

(Facebook Photo/Katie Hobbs)

PHOENIX – Katie Hobbs, the Democratic nominee for Arizona governor, said the state’s near-total abortion ban goes against the will of the people and she’d work to change it if elected.

“I’ll do whatever it takes to continue to expand access, including vetoing further restrictions,” Hobbs told KTAR News 92.3 FM in an interview that aired Thursday.

Hobbs, Arizona’s current secretary of state, said she’d call a special session of the Legislature in an effort to repeal the law, which originated in 1864.

Republicans are responsible for the legislation that put the ban into effect, at least for now. They’ve had control of both chambers of the Legislature since 2009 and are expected to extend their reign in this year’s election.

“If the Republicans in the Legislature want to actually represent their constituents, they will realize that this law is not supported by most Arizonans, and they’ll do that,” Hobbs said of repealing the pre-statehood ban.

Polling conducted last month by OH Predictive Insights appears to support what Hobbs says about the voters’ will. The Phoenix research firm found that 50% of Arizona voters believe abortion should be legal in some cases, 41% think it should be legal in all circumstances and only 9% say it should be illegal.

If Hobbs can’t ease abortion restrictions through legislative means, she said she’ll work to put a constitutional amendment to ensure abortion rights on the ballot as a voter initiative.

“Not only would I support that initiative, I would help lead the charge on it,” she said.

Republican lawmakers passed a 15-week abortion ban this year, but it included language saying it didn’t repeal the near-total law. Both versions of the restrictions hold doctors, not patients, criminally liable for abortions and include exceptions for saving the mother’s life.

Providers have halted abortion services while the issue works its way through the courts, but the most recent ruling said the near-total ban is in effect.

In the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade, which had ensured abortion rights at the federal level for nearly 50 years, abortion has become a major issue leading up to the Nov. 8 general election.

Hobbs and her Republican opponent, former local TV news anchor Kari Lake, have starkly different views on the issue.

“I said it before, I will continue to say it: I’m pro-life. I want to save as many lives as possible,” Lake told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s The Mike Broomhead Show on Tuesday.

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Here’s what Democratic candidate Katie Hobbs says about Arizona abortion laws