If past is prologue, 2023 promises legislative shenanigans. Every four years, when a new legislature takes its collective seats, an unpopular bill is pushed through by mysterious, unnamed powers. Be it a pay raise, a tax or a gambling bill, the number one priority is something no one ran on that must be dealt with immediately. So the four-year clock starts running, and the action can slowly fade in the voter’s memory – to be all but forgotten when the next election rolls around.
This year the phantom legislation will be an attempt to water down the law prohibiting abortion that was passed by the Alabama Legislature in 2019. It was easy to pass because Alabama is a pro-life state, with a pro-life constituency, and most did not believe it would ever see the light of day. They thought Roe v. Wade would never be overturned. Now that it appears to be in the offing, squishy Republicans want to reverse course and provide a fig leaf of cover so that things may continue with the status quo. They plan to demand “reasonable” exemptions for rape and incest – but how often is that really needed? Post-rape pregnancy prevention treatment reduces the need for abortions, and while Hollywood likes to present Southerners as inbred, it is actually a very rare occurrence. Certainly nothing worth allowing the murder of 6,000 innocent souls. Current legislation clearly allows for the life of the mother to be in consideration. There is no need to widen it any further.
No legislation should be passed that allows for anything less than an outright ban on abortion – as the law exists today. With a complete ban, the abortion clinics in Alabama will be forced to close. The need for these exemptions will probably leave with the abortion providers. After three years, the Legislature can take a second look, examine the results, and then pass legislation that they can be held accountable for as they head into the next election.
As the Nation is roiled with a never-ending cycle of crises exaggerated by Federal gridlock, the action has shifted to the States. Who we send to the State Legislature will matter more now than it has in recent memory. Make sure it is someone who can read the stitches on a political fastball that will not be caught flat-footed by special interests or manipulated by consultants.
Most importantly, make sure it is not someone who will be suckered into supporting a change to a law that makes the historical overturning of Roe vs. Wade irrelevant. There are a lot of pretenders in the Republican Party today. Do your homework. Make sure they have a track record of supporting traditional conservative causes and legislation. We don’t need political shenanigans in times like this.
Buck Clemons, from Madison, is a candidate for Alabama House District 25. 1819 News does not endorse candidates for public office and welcomes the views of any candidate running for office in Alabama. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of 1819 News. To comment, please send an email with your name and contact information to Commentary@1819news.com.