Alabama abortion ban 'has gone too far' with 'extreme' bill, evangelical leader Pat Robertson says

Lily Puckett

Evangelical leader Pat Robertson has declared Alabama’s new abortion ban, which prevents the procedure outright in nearly all cases, “an extreme law”.

“I think Alabama has gone too far, they’ve passed a law that would give a 99-year prison sentence to those who commit abortions,” Mr Robertson said during an episode of his long-running Christian television show, The 700 Club.

“There’s no exception for rape or incest,” he continued. “It’s an extreme law and they want to challenge Roe v Wade, but my humble view is that this is not the case we want to bring to the Supreme Court because I think this one’ll lose.”

Though the evangelical maintained his support for ending Roe v Wade, he still told CBS viewers that he thought Alabama’s specific law was “ill-considered”.

Alabama’s new rule, which was signed into law by governor Kay Ivey on Wednesday afternoon, is now the strictest anti-abortion law in the country.

With almost no exception, the law declares abortion a Class A felony, and attempted abortion a Class C felony.

It will take effect in six months, meaning that abortion remains legal in Alabama for now.

Its creators have said it is a direct challenge of Roe v Wade, the Supreme Court ruling that protects American abortion rights, and the ACLU of Alabama has already vowed to challenge it.

It's the latest in a series of dedicated laws enacted by Republican legislatures attempting to reach the Supreme Court, including a bill in neighbouring Georgia that criminalizes abortions after six weeks of pregnancy.

Mr Robertson is considered a foundational member of the current Evangelical movement, which has been working against abortion rights for decades. A former Southern Baptist minister, he rose to fame after establishing the conservative Christian Broadcasting Network in the 1960s.

He currently serves as chairman for CBN, and has been arguably its most famous personality since its inception.

Though he finds Alabama’s law extreme, Mr Robertson’s commitment to the cause of stripping women of access to abortion does not appear to be waning.

“God bless them,” he said of the Alabama legislators, despite what he considers mistakes. “They’re trying to do something.”