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“I wouldn’t use the word desperate”: NH GOP spends big to flee from abortion record on 2nd Anniversary of Dobbs

“I wouldn’t use the word desperate”: NH GOP spends big to flee from abortion record on 2nd Anniversary of Dobbs

The NH GOP used the 2nd anniversary of Dobbs to announce plans to drop six-figures to flee from their abortion record after several bruising election contests where their 2021 ban featured prominently. (Colin Booth/Granite Post)

By Colin Booth

June 25, 2024

On the 2nd anniversary of the overturning of Roe v. Wade, the New Hampshire Republican Party announced a six-figure ad spend attempting to rewrite their record on reproductive rights in the 2024 election after passing the first abortion ban in modern history.

During a press conference led by NH GOP Chair Chris Ager, the party announced a new website with two videos explaining the existing abortion ban and various talking points offering a cherry-picked take on existing abortion restrictions in the state. 

Faced with questions on why Granite Staters opposed the Republican position on taking away abortion rights, one of the speakers, Samantha Faucher, treasurer of the Manchester GOP, said it was because young women were too emotional.

“As a young woman, it’s easy for us to be hyper-emotional about this issue,” said Faucher.

Support for a national abortion ban is prominently featured in the NH GOP platform. When asked how the party could reconcile their stated support for comprehensive abortion bans with this election year stunt, NH GOP Chair Chris Ager said a total abortion ban was still the aspiration of the New Hampshire Republican Party.

“The platform is provided by.. it’s put in place by our delegates, and that’s a subsection of the Republicans in the state. That’s our position of belief. But it’s a totally different thing to say, what are we going to legislate for the people of the state.”

RELATED: Sen. Shaheen reflects on the 27th anniversary of her removing abortion as a crime in NH, looks to threats ahead

State Senator Sharon Carson said Republicans, despite being on the losing end of multiple elections where their abortion ban was centrally featured, were not running away from their record.

“First of all, I wouldn’t use the word desperate, because I don’t think anyone here is desperate. I think the desperation, quite frankly, is on the other side,” Carson said.

Carson said Democrats were to blame for Republicans blocking abortion protections because they opposed Republicans’ efforts to allow the state to collect data on abortions being conducted, a move Democrats opposed because, as written, they say the law would have allowed identifiable information of patients.

Democratic State Senator Cindy Rosenwald drove that point home. 

“The plain language of the bill does not prohibit disclosure of patient identity to the Department of Health and Human Services. It is true that it doesn’t require that disclosure, but it does not prohibit any provider from sharing that information with the Department of Health and Human Services,” Rosenwald said.

New Hampshire Republicans left the door open to further abortion restrictions this latest legislative term, blocking several attempts to codify affirmative protections to abortion into the state constitution.

House Democratic Leader Matt Wihelm said the overwhelming amount of legislation Republicans have attempted to pass furthering abortion restrictions in the state and efforts to block protections for abortion gave him no confidence in this sudden about-face from the NH GOP.

“Let’s be clear: If the NH GOP truly respected women’s rights, they would have voted to pass CACR23 — a constitutional amendment affirming Granite Staters’ right to abortion prior to 24 weeks — and sent it to NH voters for their consideration this November. But they didn’t. Instead, a majority of NH House Republicans voted for HB591, a 6-week abortion ban, when they had the opportunity this session,” Wilhelm wrote on social media.

“Don’t believe Republicans’ election year spin. NH Democrats will continue fighting to codify abortion rights and keep Republicans from further eroding Granite Staters’ reproductive freedom.”

State Republicans’ were quick to show their displeasure with the move.

“Useless,” wrote Republican State Representative Mike Belcher on social media. “The first, biggest failure on this matter is zero internal logic and consistency. Abortion is either a moral evil, a good, or neutral. If the actions and rhetoric don’t match a coherent ethic nobody will take it seriously – that’s how we consistently lose.”

At a mobilization event attended by several hundred people later in the day by the New Hampshire Democratic Party coordinated campaign, Senator Jeanne Shaheen chided the small GOP event.

“Did you hear about the press conference,” Shaheen asked the crowd.

”Where they promised us that they’re not going to do anything more to roll back women’s reproductive freedom? Read their platform, look at what they’ve done. The two year anniversary of this Dobbs decision reminds us what’s at stake. It’s our reproductive freedom.”

Author

  • Colin Booth

    Based in Epsom, Colin Booth is Granite Post's political correspondent. A Granite State native and veteran political professional with a deep background in journalism, he's worked on campaigns and programs in battleground states across the country, ranging from New Hampshire, Texas, Pennsylvania and Washington D.C.

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