Here’s Where Tennessee’s Republican Candidates Stand On Abortion

Grace Carr | Reporter

Some of Tennessee’s Republican candidates vying for the governor’s seat have not been at all shy about their disdain and disgust with abortion and Planned Parenthood.

Of the four GOP candidates hoping to win the gubernatorial run in November’s elections, candidates Diane Black and Randy Boyd have strongly voiced their objections to abortion.

Knoxville businessman Boyd emphatically endorses adoption as an alternative route to abortion.

“I’m pro-life and I’m pro-adoption,” Boyd said, according to Nashville Public Radio (NPR). “And if I’m elected governor, I want to make sure that Tennessee is the most adoption-friendly state in America,” he added. In his campaign against abortion, he recounts how his wife was adopted and that he is grateful every day that her mother chose adoption over abortion. “For me, it’s not about the politics of life — it’s about the love of my life,” Boyd also said, explaining why is particularly keen to run for the governor’s seat and make Tennessee one of the most pro-adoption states in America.

Black has also been vocal about fighting abortion. “Why should we be giving taxpayer dollars to an organization that is breaking the law?” she says in her campaign video. She also seeks to appeal to Trump voters, vowing to continue advancing his agenda so that Americans are better off everywhere. We have a “once in a lifetime opportunity to advance the President’s agenda where we can actually help the American people,” she says in the video.

Black also sponsored the Conscience Protection Act (CPA), which protects for pro-life health care workers who are forced to provide abortions. She sent a March 8 letter to Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy and House Majority Whip Steve Scalise asking them to include her bill in the upcoming spending bill. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Ever Get Fired For Being Pro-Life? Congress Is Looking To Protect Your Beliefs)

“The Conscience protections act protects those who are health care workers who do not want to violate their rights of conscience in participating in an abortion—the destruction of life,” Black told The Daily Caller News Foundation in March.

Candidates Bill Lee and Beth Harwell have been less vocal about abortion in their campaigns but have still come out as pro-life to appeal to anti-abortion sentiment that runs rampant in the southern state.

Lee points to the work he’s done to give pregnancy centers more resources and a larger platform, and indicated that he would support any measure that would reduce the number of babies being aborted in Tennessee. “I would be for any restriction that would limit abortions,” he told Nashville Public Radio.

Harwell endorses the laws that Tennessee has passed restricting abortion and vows to continue the trend. “I think we’ve done a pretty good job in the state legislature of being very pro-life,” Harwell told NPR. “I think our abortion laws are some of the best in the nation, and I think that the laws we have in place are there to protect the women that are involved,” she added.

A woman must receive counseling and wait 48 hours after her first request before having an abortion in Tennessee. State funds allocated for abortion costs cover abortions only in the case of rape, incest or where the mother’s life is in danger, the Guttmacher Institute reports.

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