Political Upset: Two Republicans Join Forces to Repeal Arizona’s ‘1864 Abortion Ban,’ Thwarting Democratic Campaign Strategy


On Wednesday, two Arizona Republican state Senators broke party lines to repeal the “1864 ban on abortion,” a law from the past that was a key issue in the campaign of abortion activists across the country and the crucial swing state.

The Arizona State Senate is currently under the control of the Republican Party. T.J. Shope and Shawnna Bollick, both Republican state senators joined Democrats to force a vote on the bill and repeal the law.

Bolick said that the repeal of the abortion law could help to protect future babies by preserving less strict anti-abortion laws.

She said, “We should push for maximum protection of unborn children.” “I’m in favor of saving the lives of more babies.”

The anti-abortion activists yelled: “Come On!” and “This Is a Disgrace!” They also said, “One Day You Will Face a Just and Holy God!”

Gov. Katie Hobbs will sign the bill.

According to the New York Times report, the state’s ban on abortion has become a key issue for the Democratic Party in its efforts to salvage voters who are only interested in one single issue. The party is facing significant political challenges due to the economy and immigration before the 2024 elections.

The Times article linked above noted:

The issue has galvanized Democratic votes and energized an effort to bring an abortion-rights measure to Arizona voters this November. It created a rift on the right between anti-abortion advocates who wanted to keep the law and Republican politicians worried about the possible political backlash if they supported a nearly total abortion ban without exceptions for incest or rape.

Arizona’s highest court has upheld a law from 1864 that banned almost all abortions. The New York Times put it succinctly:

“Nowhere is the politics of abortion better distilled than Arizona, where liberal activists have been pushing for ballot measures in November that would enshrine the right to abortion in the State Constitution. The measure’s supporters say they already have enough signatures to place the question on a ballot before a deadline of early July.

This means that the state will likely be at the forefront of a national campaign by Democrats to turn the 2024 election into another referendum on the right to abortion.;

In April, Vice President Kamala Harris traveled to Arizona with the explicit purpose of criticizing former President Donald Trump’s abortion laws. The Dobbs decision, which was handed down by the Supreme Court justices appointed by Trump, paved the way for strict abortion laws.

Donald Trump has, however, said that he supports the state’s right to abortion, frustrating his political opponents who sought to portray him as an ‘anti-abortion tough liner’.

The White House stated after the Arizona Supreme Court upheld the law:

“Millions of Arizonans are soon to live under a more extreme and dangerous ban on abortion, which does not protect women when their health or lives are at risk or tragic cases of incest or rape. The cruel abortion ban was first passed in 1864, more than 150 years before Arizona became a state. It was also before women were granted the right to vote. This ruling is the result of an extreme agenda by Republican elected officials, who are dedicated to stripping women of their freedom.”

The reelection campaign of President Joe Biden launched a media blitz, which included a seven-figure advertising buy. These ads will likely become obsolete in light of the repeal of Arizona’s 1864 abortion law.

After Roe v. Wade was effectively repealed in the Supreme Court Dobbs ruling, the pro-abortion left rallied for state laws that would represent a “worst-case scenario” for future voters who might seek abortions to end unwanted pregnancies.

A campaign ad promoting Tennessee’s strict abortion laws was a particularly egregious example of fearmongering.

California Governor: “Alabama’s abortion ban does not make any exceptions for rape and incest.” Gavin Newsom commented on X. “Now Republicans are trying to criminalize the travel of young women to get abortion care. We can’t let them off the hook.”

The Wall Street Journal published a poll in mid-April that showed abortion to be “the top issue — by far — for suburban women voters from swing states.”

The Brookings Institute pointed out that there are two swing states in which a high turnout for abortion could boost Biden’s chances of winning the election.

Which two states? Florida and Arizona.