Iowa GOP Sen. Chuck Grassley said he would vote against a bill calling for a national 15-week abortion ban.
Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. last month introduced legislation that would impose a national 15-week ban on abortions.
During a televised debate with Democrat opponent Mike Franken on Thursday night, Grassley was asked whether he supported Graham's bill.
"I would vote no," said Grassley, who last year co-sponsored Graham's bill that banned abortions after 20 weeks.
In the wake of the Supreme Court, in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, striking down the constitutional right to an abortion, Grassley said the issue should be handled at the state level.
Grassley, seeking an eighth term, led Franken, a retired Navy admiral, 47% to 39%, according to a Des Moines Register/Mediacom Iowa Poll conducted in July.
"That margin is narrower than in any Iowa Poll matchup involving Grassley since he was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 1980," the Register reported.
Although former President Barack Obama carried Iowa in both 2008 and 2012, the state voted for Donald Trump in 2016 and 2020.
Only nine Senate Republicans have sponsored Graham's proposal of a 15-week abortion ban, except when the life of the mother is at risk or in cases of rape or incest, The Hill reported.
In January, 2021, 43 Senate GOP members co-sponsored Graham's 20-week abortion ban bill.
Graham introduced his 15-week ban without consulting with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. — who wasn't thrilled at not being given a heads up, The Hill said.
The South Carolina senator's move shifted attention to the abortion debate from inflation, crime, and the southern border.
Last month, McConnell signaled that he does not plan to bring Graham's bill to the floor even if Republicans win back the Senate majority.
"With regard to his bill, you'll have to ask him about it. In terms of scheduling, I think most of the members of my conference prefer that this be dealt with at the state level," McConnell told reporters, The Hill reported.
Democrat strategist Brad Bannon insisted to the Washington Examiner that Graham's bill is "political suicide for the GOP, [because] it's clear in polling that the Dobbs decision drove many young people and women away towards the Democratic Party in the midterms."
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