Congressman Budd is entering the week with more bad news as he “caught flak” from Republicans and Democrats alike for supporting and co-sponsoring a federal abortion bill proposal. The Charlotte Observer called Budd out for “trying to masquerade as some sort of moderate” while also “tethering himself” to former President Trump. The piece called it “a curious strategy in a tightening race, especially since some Republicans have reportedly grown worried about Budd’s prospects, while also highlighting the fact that Budd’s lead has shrunk in recent months and his opponent, Cheri Beasley, has consistently dominated in fundraising.
Other outlets also highlighted Budd’s out of touch abortion stance, calling it “a real head-scratcher”, and noting that even “many Republicans, including Senate GOP Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, are steering clear of advocating for a national abortion ban.”
Read the highlights here:
Charlotte Observer: As some Republicans move to the middle, NC’s Ted Budd slides back to the right
- For a brief time, it almost seemed like Rep. Ted Budd was trying to masquerade as some sort of moderate but Budd hasn’t done much to publicly tether himself to the former president since.
- It’s a curious strategy in a tightening race, especially since some Republicans have reportedly grown worried about Budd’s prospects. Budd’s lead has shrunk in recent months and his opponent, Cheri Beasley, has consistently dominated in fundraising.
- Budd did finally offer some clarity this week — though probably not the kind some Republicans had hoped — by co-sponsoring a national ban on abortion after 15 weeks. That bill, initially introduced in the Senate by Sen. Lindsey Graham, has frustrated many Republicans who fear it may be political self-sabotage.
- Budd’s public support for the bill is a curious strategy, too, since most North Carolinians say they do not support further restrictions on abortion. Recent focus groups indicate that abortion rights may be the top issue for swing voters in the state, Axios Raleigh reported.
WRAL: Abortion taking center stage in NC Dems’ 2022 campaigns
- Recent polling showing voters in the state are overwhelmingly opposed to total or near-total abortion bans, though many say they would support some restrictions.
- Most North Carolinians want abortion laws to stay the same or become less restrictive, according to a WRAL News poll released in June.
- Longtime Republican strategist and pollster Paul Shumaker released a poll Wednesday that found little support for total or near-total abortion bans, even among Republican voters. Among every group except Republicans, the position chosen by the greatest number of respondents was: “Abortions should be the right of the woman and legal in all circumstances.”
- Western Carolina University political scientist Chris Cooper said he was surprised by Budd’s decision to co-sponsor the bill, given that many Republicans, including Budd, have seemed to be moving away from the abortion issue on the campaign trail for the general election.
- “Strategically, it’s a real head-scratcher,” Cooper said. “To see him sign onto a bill that would essentially ban abortions nationally after the 15th week was a big shock and seems to run counter to what was the prevailing strategy up to this point.”
ABC 13: NC Senate candidate catches flak for backing federal abortion ban proposals
- Budd’s moves were criticized by North Carolina Democratic Party Chair Bobbie Richardson.
- “By putting his name on this piece of legislation, Ted Budd continues to show North Carolinians just how dangerous he would be in the U.S. Senate,” Richardson said. “If elected to the U.S. Senate, he will vote to take away women’s rights and freedoms to make their own medical decision.”
- Abortion rights are a hot-button topic this election season, and these proposals pivot from the GOP’s target to give states the power to outlaw abortions. Many Republicans, including Senate GOP Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, are steering clear of advocating for a national abortion ban.
- “I think most of the members of my conference prefer that this be dealt with at the state level,” McConnell said.