Perhaps Monday was just a busy day in the GOP Senate campaign. Too busy, perhaps, to craft even a pro forma response regarding the question of whether or not they shared Marco Rubio‘s abortion position, described by Florida Democratic Party chair Allison Tant as opposition “to all abortions with no exceptions for cases of rape or incest.”
The press shops for David Jolly, Carlos Lopez-Cantera, and Ron DeSantis were all contacted Monday afternoon with a simple question: “I was wondering if your candidate had a reaction to this, as the Dems have called [your candidate] out on it. If I could get a statement today regarding where [your candidate is vis a vis the Rubio position, it would be appreciated.”
And… nothing, even as the noon hour approaches on Tuesday.
The genesis of this question: Right to Rise attacking Rubio on his abortion position, an argument that The Weekly Standard notes that Jeb picked up late last week, and which has come up ever since.
Exceptions in the case of rape and incest seem to be the main difference between 2016 Republican candidates on abortion. In this sense, Jeb Bush’s position, on the left side of that GOP spectrum, is oddly analogous with that of his father, who was resolutely pro-choice until the moment he was included on the Presidential ticket in 1980, and with Prescott Bush, who was staunchly pro-choice as well.
The Florida Democratic Party continues to hammer the Republican troika on its silence.
“Yesterday,” said Comms Director Max Steele on Tuesday, “the Republican U.S. Senate hopefuls refused to even comment on Marco Rubio’s radical, anti-woman position. But Lopez Cantera, Jolly, and DeSantis can’t hide behind cowardly silence forever, and Floridians deserve an explanation of their views. Do they or do they not support Rubio’s position of banning all abortions — even in cases of rape or incest?”
The GOP candidates face a dilemma: do they go against the hard right position of the man they seek to replace, or do they endorse it and get painted as extremists?