South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham on Tuesday claimed that abortion should not be a “states’ rights” issue despite calling for states to decide weeks earlier, MSNBC reports.
Graham earlier this month introduced a bill that would ban abortion nationwide after 15 weeks even as many Republican candidates try to downplay their opposition to abortion amid voter backlash.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell wants to focus on other issues ahead of the midterms as the GOP struggles to win over voters on abortion.
Graham said he did not consult McConnell before introducing the bill.
“Let me tell you why I think Mitch is wrong. He’s pro-life. So, let’s talk about a broken border. Let’s talk about rampant crime. Let’s talk about out-of-control inflation. Let’s talk about failing foreign policy and withdrawal from Afghanistan. But when you’re on the stump, people need to know who you are and where you are,” Graham said.
Graham on Tuesday told Fox News that he does not view abortion as a states’ rights issue.
“This is not a states’ rights issue, this is a human right issue,” Graham said. “I don’t care what California does on most things. I care here. I am not going to sit on the sidelines in Washington, D.C., and tell the pro-life community Washington is closed for business.”
That’s not what he said before:
Graham in May said that a Supreme Court decision overturning Roe would mean that “every state will decide if abortion is legal and on what terms.”
After the court overturned abortion rights, Graham said in June that it would be up to “elected officials in the states to decide.”
“All of us in the conservative world have believed that there’s nothing in the Constitution giving the federal government the right to regulate abortion,” he told Fox News in June.