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House Minority Ldr Daniels predicts eventual ‘political awakening’ in Alabama over abortion

Earlier this week, Alabama House Minority Leader Anthony Daniels (D-Huntsville) asked Gov. Kay Ivey to call a special session and give the legislature a chance to modify the current abortion law.

Ivey communications director Gina Maiola responded to the request, saying, “[T]here will not be a special session on the 2019 Alabama Human Life Protection Act. Governor Ivey has made her position on this clear, and that is that she wanted to see this 2019 law enacted.”

Daniels reiterated his position Thursday on WVNN’s “The Dale Jackson Show” and said there would be a “political awakening” in the Yellowhammer State as more people realized the ramifications of the law.

“I think that you will find more than 70%, I’d venture to say, of the people of Alabama were unaware that there wasn’t an exception for rape and incest,” Daniels argued, “so I think that the more people find out that there was not an exception for rape and incest, and once doctors start turning away treatment from those individuals that have had miscarriages, I do think that you’ll see a political awakening on this particular issue.”

The minority leader said he knew some Republican lawmakers who used to support more exceptions in the abortion law but passed it without them to get it to the Supreme Court.

“Even when I introduced an amendment in 2019,” he explained, “there were members of the Republican caucus that came to me and said, ‘You know I really want to support that particular, but we were convinced that we had to pass the law exactly the way it was in anticipation for the Supreme Court decision.’ I said, ‘Well in anticipation for the Supreme Court decision would force our state to have a total ban without any exceptions for rape and incest and not bearing clarity on the medical aspect for the physicians.'”

Daniels said the Republicans in the legislature were never prepared for Roe v. Wade to actually be overturned.

“But they thought was that it would never pass, right?” he added. “And so, their automatic thought was that we’d never get to this state, and now that we’re there, they’re not sure how to handle it… I’ve not seen anyone call for to address this.”

He shared that he intended to ask Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall for “clarity” on different aspects of how the law would be enforced, specifically on whether it was illegal to help someone make arrangements to get an abortion in another state.

“Once there’s clarity,” he continued, “in an official opinion issued, I think that you then begin to have the conversations, and you understand the consequences. I don’t think any person right now without the appropriate clarity will assist in helping anyone at this particular point, but personally I don’t see this being in the law to penalize anyone, however prosecutors could decide to do this on their own.”

Daniels emphasized that the issue was far from being settled, even in Alabama.

“I think at some point,” he advised, “we’ll have to get some adults in the room to start having further discussions, but the adults in the room can’t just be all males. We’ve been dominating the conversation and the policy conversation and running the plays on these particular issues without any conversation with women. And so I think that in order for us to really get to a point to where there could be a compromise based upon where we are now, especially in some of these states with total bans, I think that we have to bring women into the conversation and healthcare professionals.”

Yaffee is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts “The Yaffee Program” Weekdays 9-11am on WVNN. You can follow him on Twitter @Yaffee

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