The draconian SB 8 law enacted in Texas earlier this month has made the lone star state the butt of a number of jokes lately – as well as rightful scorn by people who are genuinely fearing for their lives, but it’s become rather obvious that Texas is merely the beginning of the GOP’s longtime goal. Similar bills have been in the pipes in other states and California’s gubernatorial candidate Larry Elder proposed changing the current laws in his longshot recall bid. The extent of SB 8 and its backlash have, however, driven a few notorious Republican governors to desperately water down proposals and laws they were hoping to sign. One example is media darling Ron DeSantis who after bragging about his pro-life credentials said he would have to study Florida’s proposed abortion bill further before signing it.
Of course, none of them really intend to slow down – and much of their behavior hinges on how the Supreme Court will ultimately react to the status of SB 8. As much as they might be worried about backlash, a number of Republican voters and donors have been wanting Roe v. Wade overturned for a long time – and governors like Abbott and DeSantis are counting on those voters to reward them in 2022. The good news is that because of Texas, this is yet another issue that Republicans are forced to be vague on, at the risk of losing voters however they stand.
One prime example right now is Glenn Youngkin, running for governor in Virginia. Democratic nominee Terry McAuliffe attacked Youngkin’s positions even before SB 8 – but now there’s video footage of Youngkin saying he only pretends to be a moderate for the cameras – that should he become governor, he plans to go on full offense with the state assembly flipped in his favor. This should be all the incentive we need to show to the polls. Not all Republican candidates are as likely to be as dumb as Youngkin, but they all have the same plans long-term.
James Sullivan is the assistant editor of Brain World Magazine and an advocate of science-based policy making