Sen. Lindsey Graham defends 15-week abortion ban bill, which lacks full GOP support

WASHINGTON – Sen. Lindsey Graham defended his abortion ban bill Sunday despite lack of full GOP support.

"I'm confident the American people would accept a national ban on abortion at 15 weeks, with exceptions for the life of the mother raping, incest," the South Carolina Republican said on "Fox News Sunday."

"And if we can't do this for the unborn, what good are we to the unborn?" he added.

Graham's bill, introduced last week, would prohibit an abortion procedure after 15 weeks of pregnancy. It comes weeks before the midterm elections and a few months after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.

The proposal has drawn criticism from some of his Republican colleagues, including Sen. Mike Rounds of South Dakota, who said on CNN Sunday that he will not support it.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) speaks during a news conference to announce a new bill that would enact a national ban on abortions after the 15-week mark.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) speaks during a news conference to announce a new bill that would enact a national ban on abortions after the 15-week mark.

" At this point, to have Congress step back and tell all the states that we know better than them how to handle this, is probably not the right direction to go," he said.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said Tuesday, referencing the ban that "most of the members of my conference prefer that this be dealt with at the state level," according to Fox News.

Republican nominee for U.S. Senate in Colorado, Joe O'Dea, said on NBC's "Meet the Press" on Sunday that "the first five months of pregnancy are critical and should be a choice between a woman and her doctor."

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GOP Senate candidates have been quieter on the campaign trail about the abortion issue, especially in battleground states where polling shows them behind their Democratic challengers or in neck-and-neck races.

Graham also said he has been consistent in his abortion stand.

"I'm not inconsistent. In 2020, I had a bill on the floor of the United States Senate right across the Capitol that banned abortion at 20 weeks because the baby can feel pain."

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Lindsey Graham defends his 15-week abortion ban bill