GOP Gubernatorial Candidates Have Pledged to Ban Abortion
The leading GOP candidates for Minnesota governor have pledged to ban abortion outright, with no exceptions for victims of rape or incest
May 10, 2022
ST. PAUL, MN -- Minnesota Republicans will gather in Rochester this weekend to endorse a candidate for governor. This week, the Walz-Flanagan campaign will be spotlighting the voices of Minnesotans who know firsthand how the far-right agenda that the Republican candidates have promised to enact would be dangerous for Minnesotans.
All of the leading GOP candidates for governor have pledged to ban abortion in Minnesota if the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade this summer, whether through appointing anti-choice judges that would overturn Doe v. Gomez, new anti-choice legislation, or supporting amendments to the Minnesota constitution.
“The leading GOP candidates for governor have pledged to pass abortion bans without exceptions for victims of rape or incest,” said Maggie Meyer, Executive Director of Pro-Choice Minnesota. “If the Supreme Court overturns Roe next month, Minnesota will be the last line of defense for people seeking abortion not just in our state, but in the entire Upper Midwest. The governor is an essential partner in ensuring that people can get the health care they need and protecting our right to decide if, when, and how we grow our families. In November, Minnesotans will have a clear choice between re-electing a governor who will protect reproductive rights and a Republican candidate who would eliminate them.”
Gov. Tim Walz and Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan have been staunch supporters of protecting reproductive rights in Minnesota. Gov. Walz has pledged to veto an abortion ban if one is sent to his desk.
If Scott Jensen has his way, abortion will be illegal in Minnesota under almost all circumstances – including for victims of rape and incest. Jensen’s extreme anti-choice politics are longstanding: when asked in March whether he would merely push to restrict a woman’s right to choose or whether he would push for an “outright ban,” Jensen answered that he supported an outright ban on all abortions. “I would try to ban abortion,” said Jensen. He continued, “There is no reason for us to be having abortions going on.”
Jensen’s statements on the campaign trail affirm his long record of anti-choice votes at the state Legislature. Jensen has repeatedly bragged about receiving a 100% rating from the anti-choice organization Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life (MCCL) – which even supports abortion bans without exceptions for victims of rape and incest. Jensen has said on the campaign trail that he would rubberstamp their agenda and “sign anything that they [MCCL] said that we should do.”
Jensen also has chosen an anti-choice zealot, Matt Birk, as his running mate. Birk has said that “After the KKK, [Planned Parenthood] is the most racist organization in America.” In 2013, after the Baltimore Ravens won the Super Bowl, Birk famously refused to go to the White House because President Obama was pro-choice.
Paul Gazelka has voted for and co-sponsored several anti-choice bills during his time in the Legislature and has also received a 100% voting record from the anti-choice organization MCCL. Like his fellow candidates, Gazelka has promised to appoint judges and take action to overturn or reverse Doe v. Gomez, the Minnesota State Supreme Court ruling that protects the right to choose at a state level in Minnesota. And Gazelka signaled support for a Texas-style abortion ban that would allow for bounty-style lawsuits against providers who offer women safe access to abortion.
Kendall Qualls has described himself as “100% pro-life.” Qualls has called abortion in the United States “genocide” and has said that he will push for “creative” ways to defund Planned Parenthood. In his failed 2020 congressional campaign, Qualls was endorsed by the extremely anti-choice organization Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life, an organization which even supports abortion bans without exceptions for victims of rape and incest.