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A new ad from Democratic challenger Liz Mathis targets Iowa Republican U.S. Rep. Ashley Hinson’s record on abortion rights, saying the first-term incumbent supports a nationwide ban on the procedure with no exceptions for rape, incest or to save the woman’s life.
The ad references Hinson’s support of the Life at Conception Act, a bill introduced in the House in February 2021 that declares a constitutional right to life “is vested in each human being” at all stages of life, “including the moment of fertilization, cloning or other moment at which an individual comes into being.”
The bill’s language does not indicate any exceptions in cases of rape, incest or when the pregnant woman’s life is at risk.
Hinson, however, has previously supported such exemptions as a state legislator when voting in favor of the so-called fetal heartbeat law in May 2018, which is being challenged in Iowa court and has not gone into effect.
Hinson also co-sponsored the House version of a bill introduced earlier this month by South Carolina Republican U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham that would create a nationwide ban on abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy. The bill would allow for exceptions in cases of incest, rape or if the woman's life is in danger.
Hinson called the ad a “lie” in a post on Twitter, stating she is “unapologetically pro-life, and I’ll keep working to save as many lives as possible.”
“I support exceptions for rape, incest & life of the mom,” Hinson posted.
Mathis, in a statement, said: “Politicians like Ashley Hinson should not be making personal health care decisions for women,” and that, if elected to Congress, Mathis “will vote to codify Roe and protect Iowans’ reproductive freedoms.”
Democrats have funneled an unprecedented $124 million this year in television advertising reference related to abortion rights, according to the Associated Press, underscoring how central the message is to the party in the final weeks before the Nov. 8 midterm election.
That sum is more than twice as much money as the Democrats' next top issue this year, “character," and almost 20 times more than Democrats spent on abortion-related ads in the 2018 midterms, the AP reported.
To date, the Mathis campaign said it has placed $675,000 in TV ad buys, with additional media placement to be reserved.
CONSERVATIVE GROUP ENDORSEMENTS: The Iowa chapter of the conservative Americans for Prosperity announced its endorsement of 13 Republican candidates for the Iowa Legislature.
The organization will lend its organizing support to the candidates, which include some who are in competitive campaigns.
The endorsements include Sens. Jake Chapman, R-Adel, and Chris Cournoyer, R-LeClaire.
“Iowa needs principled leaders who will put policy over politics to fight for our economy, cut taxes, support expanded educational opportunities and improve access to quality health care our families can afford,” Drew Klein, the organization’s state director, said in a news release.
The organization also endorsed state House candidates Michael Bousselot, Mark Cisneros, Henry Stone, Doug Campbell, Dan Gehlbach, Cindy Golding, Bill Gustoff, Bob Henderson, Jennifer Smith and Mark Weatherly, and Senate candidate Scott Webster.
WISKUS ENDORSED: Jessica Wiskus, Democratic candidate for Iowa Senate District 42, announced her endorsement by Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement Action Fund.
The district covers much of rural Linn and Benton counties. There is no incumbent senator in the district because of redistricting.
Hannah Bott, CCI Action member from Mount Vernon, said Wiskus, of Lisbon, “has been standing side-by-side with her neighbors and our communities to fight the proposed CO2 pipelines.”
“She has been out listening to rural voters about the changes we need, and she’s committed to bringing those voices with her to the statehouse,” Bott said in a statement. “That’s the kind of leadership we’ve been looking for.”
Wiskus is running to challenge Republican incumbent state Rep. Charlie McClintock of Alburnett. No-party candidate Bruce Gardner of Garrison also is running for the Iowa Senate seat.
Gazette-Lee Des Moines Bureau