North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper (D) on Sunday called his state’s 12-week abortion ban, which the legislature pushed forward despite his veto, a “compromise between the right-wing and the radical right-wing.”
“This bill was contradictory, conflicting, confusing. They wrote it in the middle of the night. It’s going to be open to interpretation,” Cooper said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
“This is in no way a reasonable compromise as Republicans have presented it. It’s a compromise between the right wing and the radical right wing,” he said.
Cooper vetoed the legislation when it came to his desk earlier this month, but the Republican-controlled state General Assembly overrode the veto.
State law had previously banned most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy, but the new legislation mostly prohibits them after 12 weeks.
The bill also includes provisions aimed at expanding access to contraception and upping paid parental leave for state employees, but Cooper described these facets as “lipstick on a pig.”
“What they spent a lot of time doing is dressing up this bill so that they could attract their swing Republicans, because they knew they needed every single vote in order to be able to get this bill passed. …So what they did is try to make this bill ugly. It’s the old lipstick on a pig kind of thing,” Cooper said. He argued those provisions “are important and should be made anyway,” but that the other restrictions in the bill don’t outweigh those adds.
The Democratic governor noted that the bill is “better than some of the surrounding states” but said “we know that Republicans are unified in their assault on women’s reproductive freedom.”
“Not a single one of them stood up even when they had made promises to the people that they weren’t going to change North Carolina’s abortion law. That tells us where we are right now,” Cooper said.
The governor added that “we’re going to make sure that this bill gets implemented in a way that we provide the most access possible to women.”
12-week abortion ban
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