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McMaster secures support from anti-abortion organization in 2022

The Associated Press

COLUMBIA – A leading anti-abortion group has chosen South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster as its first gubernatorial support in next year’s election, as part of a broader strategy to create high-level positions with abortion opponents as the US Supreme Court considers whether to give states more power over the issue.

Today, representatives from the Susan B. Anthony List will travel to Greenville to support McMaster, who is now in his second full term. Their early support for the Republican even before he attracts an actively fundraising main challenger could be designed as a prophylactic way to deter anyone from challenging him to the right.

In a pre-event interview, Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the organization, told The Associated Press that McMaster’s key roles in defending the Mississippi abortion law and the new Carolina restrictions South on abortion make him “a hero in the defense of life”.

Mississippi law of 2018 would ban abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy. The state’s only abortion clinic challenges the legality of the measure, arguing that it unconstitutionally restricts access to abortion. The Mississippi Republican Attorney General, in turn, asked the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 court ruling that legalized abortion across the country.

The High Court is expected to hear the case this fall, with a ruling next year.

Last month, McMaster led a coalition of a dozen Republican governors submitting an amicus brief supporting Mississippi law. Arguing that it is best to leave the abortion issue to states, McMaster lawyers wrote that citizens can vote against lawmakers in states with which they disagree on abortion policies, but are less in favor. measure to compel federal entities to conform to the will of the people.

The landmark High Court rulings on abortion “upset the cautious balance the Constitution establishes between the federal government and the states,” they wrote, in arguments similar to those advanced by the Mississippi attorney general.

McMaster also faced related litigation in his own state, although he was suspended pending Mississippi’s decision. Earlier this year, the governor signed the South Carolina Fetal Heart Rate and Abortion Protection Act, which requires doctors to perform ultrasounds to check for cardiac activity, which can now be detected. approximately six weeks after conception. If discovered, abortion can only be performed if the pregnancy was caused by rape or incest, or if the mother’s life was in danger.

Lawyers for Planned Parenthood immediately sued, and the entire law was barred from coming into force during the trial.

“The right to life is the most precious of rights and the most fragile,” McMaster said in a statement at the time. “We must protect life at every opportunity, regardless of the cost or the inconvenience.”

About a dozen other states have adopted similar or more restrictive abortion bans, which could come into effect if judges used Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization of Mississippi to quash Roe v. Wade.

“Relying on the abortion issue can start to shift very dramatically at the state level depending on the Dobbs decision,” Dannenfelser told AP.

Although McMaster is the first governor to gain the group’s backing for next year’s election cycle, Dannenfelser said such approvals will come now that groups like his have successfully campaigned to uphold “the judges who would hear. a case that could relax the control the court has, by making abortion law in the states. “

“Endorsing a governor like Governor McMaster is part of the culmination of the whole movement,” she added.


Meg Kinnard can be contacted at

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