Eric Hovde backtracks on past statement that he's 'totally opposed to abortion' - TAI News
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Eric Hovde is trying to clarify his position on abortion just days after the wealthy Republican business owner announced he’s running for the GOP nomination to face off against Democratic Wisconsin U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin this fall.

A progressive group called A Better Wisconsin Together is running a radio ad that paraphrases a statement “California megamillionaire Eric Hovde” made during his previous U.S. Senate campaign in 2012, during which he told a conservative radio host: “I am a strong believer in pro-life. I am totally opposed to abortion.”

The ad also points out that Hovde received an endorsement in 2012 from Wisconsin Right to Life, which opposes abortion, even for victims of rape or incest. The group said in 2012, “Hovde has indicated strong support for federal right-to-life issues should he be elected.”

Responding to the ad, Hovde’s campaign told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that Hovde supports exceptions in cases of rape, incest, and “to protect the life of the mother.” Hovde’s campaign added that he thinks abortion rights in Wisconsin should be put to the voters in a referendum. 

Republicans in the State Assembly passed a bill to put a referendum on a 14-week abortion ban on the April primary ballot; however, the bill has not yet been taken up by the State Senate.

The response of the Hovde campaign is unlikely to placate A Better Wisconsin Together.

“Eric Hovde has flat out said, in his own words, that he is ‘totally opposed’ to abortion,” A Better Wisconsin Together communications director Lucy Ripp said in a news release. “As Donald Trump and his MAGA enablers in Wisconsin and Washington D.C. gear up to pass dangerous abortion bans, people deserve to know Eric Hovde would join them in voting to take away their reproductive freedoms.”

Polling shows a majority of voters support abortion rights and oppose Republican efforts to limit the procedure or ban it altogether.

A New York Times/Siena College poll conducted in October 2023 found 63% of Wisconsin voters believe abortion should be legal in all or most cases. A Marquette University poll conducted in January found 48% of Wisconsinites opposed to Republicans’ proposed 14-week abortion ban, while 45% supported it. 

After Hovde’s announcement, Baldwin warned that a Hovde victory would imperil abortion rights.

“If Eric Hovde defeats me, he’d help Mitch McConnell and national Republicans ban abortion nationwide, gut Social Security + Medicare, repeal the Affordable Care Act, and cut taxes for rich people like themselves while raising taxes on middle-class families,” Baldwin said in a post on X. “Those are the stakes.”

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