Democratic Attorney General candidate Daniel Uhlfelder declared Tuesday that if he’s elected he would not investigate or prosecute anyone for receiving or providing abortions.
Uhlfelder, of Santa Rosa Beach, responded Tuesday to news that the Supreme Court of the United States is on the verge of overturning the Roe v. Wade federal assurance of legal abortions. The draft opinion leaked Monday to POLITICO shows the High Court ready to turn the legality of abortions over entirely to the states, with many states ready to outlaw them.
Uhlfelder vowed he would not enforce an abortion ban in Florida.
“Let me be clear: As Florida Attorney General I will never investigate nor prosecute someone for getting or providing an abortion,” Uhlfelder said in a statement issued Tuesday. “I will use the power of my office to refuse to enforce any abortion ban. That is what I owe the people who elect me — to be on their side, not on the side of far-right, fringe extremists.”
Another Democrat running for Attorney General, former State Attorney Aramis Ayala, also pledged to fight on the issue, but stopped short of pledging to not enforce an abortion ban.
“We are on the brink of a dark day if SCOTUS overturns Roe v. Wade,” Ayala tweeted Tuesday. “The decision relegates women to a second-class status. It undermines America’s ability to say we are a beacon of freedom for all. As the People’s Lawyer I’ll fight for rights to safe access to reproductive health.”
Each of them wants to unseat Republican Attorney General Ashley Moody. Unlike scores of other elected officials, she has not issued a statement on the proposed decision.
Uhlfelder called the draft Supreme Court decision “outrageous.”
“With federal protections annihilated, the onus to fight for the fundamental right will be on the states,” Uhlfelder said in his news release. “Across the country, Democratic attorneys general have been in the front lines in the fight to defend and expand reproductive freedoms. Here in Florida, we have an Attorney General who has abdicated that responsibility.”