JIM SHARPE

The abortion stance both sides need to agree on in Arizona

Apr 10, 2024, 11:00 AM

When Gov. Katie Hobbs says she’s “devastated” by the Arizona Supreme Court’s decision to revert to the 1864 law that creates a near-total abortion ban in our state, I believe her.

When Hobbs’ fellow Arizona Democrat, U.S. Sen. Mark Kelly, uses the same word, I also believe he’s being sincere. But since he also told MSNBC that, “elections matter,” he’s also kinda excited that this may mean more people will vote for Democrats this fall. 

He’s probably right.

Republican political consultant Stan Barnes believes that this decision — made in a presidential election year (which also features a major U.S. Senate race here in Arizona) — is an electoral gift for Democrats.

That’s because, as he told KTAR News, “I don’t think that any Republican candidate in Arizona was prepared for the implications of the [Arizona] Supreme Court decision… it’s going to scatter people all over the place and be very difficult for candidates to navigate.”

It’s most certainly become a major election issue — although I don’t know if it will overtake the number one and number two issues: the border and the economy.

What I do know is this: there are people who feel so strongly about abortion — whether they are “pro-choice” or “pro-life” — that I’m unwilling (at least in this commentary) to tell you what my beliefs on abortion happen to be.

But what I will tell you is this: don’t let politicians sway you about one important part of this issue — the most important part of this issue — people.

Listen to what they have to say about abortion — but listen even more carefully to what they say about the people on the other side of the abortion issue. And then, however you’ve made up your mind up about abortion, make up your mind to not let politicians use this issue to drive an even bigger wedge between us.

Despite what the fire-breathing politicians have to say about the other side, most people on the left who support abortion access don’t do so because they want to see babies killed; and most people on the right who want to restrict abortion aren’t secret fascists wringing their hands with glee over the idea that they’re controlling women’s bodies. 

But, depending on what political brand they stand on, some politicians want you to believe exactly those things about the other side — so that you’ll vote for them.

Yes, there are abortion-clinic bombers on one side. And, yes, there are people on the other side who insist that on-demand, taxpayer-funded abortions should be available up until three minutes before birth.

But those people aren’t your neighbor. They’re not your mom or dad. Those people aren’t your cousin nor are they your best friend from high school. So, whether you’re “pro choice” or “pro-life,” choose to keep all the important people in your life — and don’t fall for the tricks of the extremists on either side.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Jim Sharpe

(KTAR News Photo)...

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The abortion stance both sides need to agree on in Arizona