Jun 22, 2023 - Politics & Policy

Dem campaign arms hit GOP on abortion for Dobbs anniversary

Pro-abortion protestors gathered outside the Supreme Court on June 24, 2022. Photo: Valerie Plesch/Bloomberg via Getty Images.

Democratic campaign organizations in charge of winning the House, Senate and White House are going after Republicans on abortion ahead of the one-year anniversary of the Supreme Court's decision in Dobbs v. Jackson.

Why it matters: It shows how Democratic campaigns are once again leaning on the issue as their trump card this cycle after it proved a potent cudgel in last year's midterms.

  • The electoral push dovetails with long-shot legislative maneuvers by House and Senate Democrats to try to force votes on pro-abortion legislation.
  • The Senate also confirmed Julie Rikelman, a renowned abortion rights lawyer, as a Circuit Court of Appeals judge on Tuesday.

Driving the news: The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is launching a website and digital ads targeting vulnerable Republicans over their support for various anti-abortion measures.

  • The ads will run against the 31 Republican incumbents the DCCC listed as their top 2024 targets in April.
  • A DCCC memo underscores their bullishness on the issue: "Recent battleground polling conducted for the DCCC shows that, by more than a two-to-one margin, voters trust Democrats to protect abortion rights."

The big picture: House Democrats aren't alone. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and Democratic National Committee joined the DCCC on a joint press call on the issue on Wednesday.

  • Sen. Gary Peters (D-Mich.), the chair of the DSCC, and other DSCC officials are "conducting interviews with a variety of outlets around the issue and its importance in the 2024 senate races," a national Democratic official working on Senate races told Axios.
  • The official said Democrats in Senate battleground states are also "holding events and using a variety of tactics to hold GOP candidates accountable" on abortion.

The other side: ”The ‘safe, legal, and rare’ Democratic Party is dead,” said National Republican Congressional Committee spokesperson Savannah Viar. “It has been overrun with abortion-on-demand extremists[.]”

  • "If Joe Manchin, Jon Tester, and Sherrod Brown want to run on their record of supporting painful, late term abortions up until the ninth month of pregnancy, that is their prerogative," a National Republican Senatorial Committee spokesperson told Axios.

The backdrop: In a 5-4 decision on June 24 last year, the Supreme Court overturned landmark abortion decision Roe v. Wade, ruling that the Constitution does not grant a right to abortion.

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