Colorado Gubernatorial Candidate Dismisses Importance of Abortion Debate

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Colorado Gubernatorial Candidate Dismisses Importance of Abortion Debate

Jason Salzman

Colorado’s anti-choice Republican gubernatorial candidate drew criticism this week after saying that a governor has “very little impact” on laws restricting abortion.

Colorado gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez told the Denver Post Thursday that a governor has “very little impact” on a woman’s right to choose.

“I’m not going to deny what the law provides you,” Beauprez told the Post, calling a woman’s right to choose the “law of the land.”

Beauprez told the Post Thursday that he is “personally pro-life” but opposes the “personhood” amendment that’s on Colorado’s November election ballot. He wasn’t asked about exceptions for rape and incest.

In March, Beauprez told other reporters that he remains a backer of the federal “personhood” abortion-ban bill, which he co-sponsored as a Congressman in 2006.

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Beauprez’s campaign did not immediately return a call from Rewire seeking comments, including an explanation for his belief that governors have “very little impact” on a woman’s right to choose.

The Guttmacher Institute tracks state laws that, in fact, restrict abortion rights, and the organization has produced a chart categorizing such laws.

“Since the Supreme Court handed down its 1973 decisions in Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, states have constructed a lattice work of abortion law, codifying, regulating and limiting whether, when and under what circumstances a woman may obtain an abortion,” Guttmacher writes in the preface to its chart.

Last year in the Colorado legislature, a “personhood” bill was introduced by anti-choice Republicans and struck down by pro-choice Democrats, who control the state legislature here.

Beauprez was not asked if he’d sign this bill or other legislation mandating abortion restrictions, if he becomes governor in November.

Colorado’s gubernatorial race is considered a toss-up, according to a USA Today/Suffolk University poll released this week. A Quinnipiac University poll, also from this week, showed Hickenlooper losing by ten points.

Republican senatorial candidate Cory Gardner, running against Sen. Mark Udall, has taken a similar position, withdrawing his support for the state “personhood” amendments but remaining a co-sponsor of a proposed federal “personhood” law. Gardner, however, has said the federal law is symbolic, despite fact checks that found otherwise.