Rick Scott sidesteps question about Lindsey Graham 15-week abortion ban bill
Rick Scott in the U.S. Senate. Image via AP.

Sen. Rick Scott
People are 'focused' on other issues headed into 2022 General Election.

Though one Florida Senator has already signed onto U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham’s push for a ban on abortion past the 15th week of pregnancy, another isn’t as quick on the draw.

National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) Chairman Rick Scott was cagey when answering the question about whether he backed the South Carolina Republican’s bill Wednesday during an interview on Fox News’ America Reports. His answer suggested a federal abortion ban push was not in sync with messaging in play in Senate General Election campaigns.

“Well, if you go around the country, what people are focused on is the economy, their kids’ education, public safety,” Scott said, before suggesting the abortion issue is mobilizing the opposition party more than Republicans in the wake of the Supreme Court Dobbs ruling that overturned Roe v. Wade this year.

“With regard to abortion, the Democrats are clearly focused on abortion,” Scott added, before being interrupted by co-host John Roberts, who said the issue was driving Democratic gains, especially among women in the suburbs.

Scott countered, saying current strategy was working for his NRSC candidates and would prevail if “we stay on our message.”

“Let’s go through the polls,” Scott said. “Ron Johnson’s winning. Herschel Walker’s winning. Ted Budd’s winning. Adam Laxalt is tied. We’re barely down in a variety of states. We’re down by 1 in Colorado, 3 points in Washington, 2 to 4 points in Arizona. We are actually heading in the right direction.”

“Look at the polls, we keep getting better week after week,” Scott added.

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, whose re-election campaign against Democrat Val Demings is among the most high-profile Senate races in the country, signed on already as the co-sponsor for the Graham bill, as culture war issues will animate the stretch run of that race.

Florida has a 15-week abortion ban with no exceptions for instances of rape or incest. Graham’s bill does allow limited, situational exceptions, requiring that rapes be reported quickly, and limiting abortions due to incest to mothers who are minors.

Democrats decried Rubio’s co-sponsorship of the bill, but Scott’s undefined position suggests Senate candidates will not be encouraged to run en masse in support of the legislation, as appealing to swing voters becomes the focus ahead of November.

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Jacob Ogles of Florida Politics contributed to this report.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


5 comments

  • Jay Smif

    September 14, 2022 at 3:03 pm

    We all know that aspiring fascist DeSantis will strip reproductive rights away from Florida women the day after the election is held if he’s re-elected, and will then also mandate “constitutional carry” with no permit or training needed to carry a concealed handgun in the state, because he’s “pro life.”

    Conservatives are inbred, hypocritical, suckers.

    Reply

    • Dan

      September 14, 2022 at 3:36 pm

      Fascist? What about that idiot in the White House that is trying to jail his political opponents, called half the country a threat, and tried to force companies to fire anyone who didn’t get an experimental vaccine?

      The only liberty the Democrats support is allowing women to terminate their babies. Everything else they want control over. You don’t support free speech. You don’t support the second amendment. You don’t support state rights. You want to pack the Supreme Court. You want to indoctrinate our children. You want to ban gas powered cars and force us to buy expensive electric vehicles. Etc etc…

      But Ron DeSantis is the fascist? What alternate universe are you living in? The only people that are radically attempting to expand the government and it’s reach into our lives are Democrats!

      Reply

      • Elliott Offen

        September 14, 2022 at 5:25 pm

        Fascism is a far right system. The only ones far right wing are in the GOP. Therefore Biden’s efforts are anti-fascist.

        Reply

  • Elliott Offen

    September 14, 2022 at 3:24 pm

    People are like Scott and focused on “other issues” heading into the midterms…like how to sabotage government and shovel even more money to the rich. Thank you average nobody GOP voter…for voting against your own interests for so many years. Daddy Rick has your money hoarded.

    Reply

  • PeterH

    September 14, 2022 at 4:32 pm

    Since Reagan made abortion a religious and Republican Party issue instead of a family decision between a woman and her physician……. I don’t understand why Republicans who have fought for five decades to overturn Roe v Wade are not campaigning and championing their historic win with ads and candidate endorsements?

    Here in Florida we never hear from .Scott or DeSantis on this historic win for the GOP! Only Marco Rubio has stepped into the arena demanding a restrictive NATIONAL ABORTION POLICY. Republicans need to step up and be proud of their disenfranchisement of 50% of the voting electorate. What Republicans should push next iis a firm policy abolishing all birth control. DeSantis can call it male FREEDUMB.
    

    Reply

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