Republican Larry Hogan wants codification of Roe v. Wade

Former Republican Gov. of Maryland Larry Hogan came out in favor of codifying into federal law precedents first set in Roe v. Wade guaranteeing a national right to an abortion.

Hogan, a contender in the surprisingly competitive Old Line State Senate race, pledged to back codification if it came up in the upper chamber, as prominent Republicans across the country have retreated on the albatross issue.

“As governor, I protected the rights of Maryland women to make their own reproductive health decisions. I will do the same in the Senate by restoring Roe v. Wade as the law of the land,” he said in a statement provided to The Post.

“No one should come between a woman and her doctor.”

Larry Hogan clinched the GOP nod to be Maryland senator on Tuesday. AP

Back in March, Hogan had been noncommittal about backing legislation to codify Roe.

As governor of Maryland, Hogan sought to stake out a middle-ground position on the issue, maintaining that while he personally opposed abortion, he would not try to upend state law on it.

In 2022, Hogan vetoed legislation to expand abortion in Maryland by nixing a rule requiring that only physicians can perform the procedure and forcing most insurance plans to cover it.

At the time, he cited concerns that loosening the standards for who can perform abortions could imperil women.

Weeks later, after the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision was announced, Hogan vowed to safeguard access to abortion in Maryland. He was one of four Republican governors to do so.

Abortion has emerged as a top issue heading into the 2024 election. AP

Should Hogan win Maryland’s open Senate seat, he will be one of at least three Republicans in the upper chamber who openly describe themselves as “pro-choice” alongside Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska).

“Given the definition of what I’m supporting — women’s rights to make their own decision — I would say that’s pro-choice,” Hogan explained to the New York Times.

Historically, both of Maryland’s Senate seats have been solidly Democratic, with Charles Mathias being the last Republican to serve as Maryland senator in the late 1980s.

Hogan just secured the GOP nod in Tuesday’s primary election and will face Democratic county executive Angela Alsobrooks, as they vie for the Class I seat being vacated by retiring Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.)

Hogan previously took a more moderate stance on abortion but is now backing the codification of Roe v. Wade. AP

Throughout his time as governor, Hogan cultivated a brand for moderation and was undeterred from levying criticism at former President Donald Trump.

Hogan was one of the most popular governors in the country, according to several polls.

Eager to protect their Senate seat, Democrats have begun pummelling him on abortion, which they see as a political weakness, and trying to cast him as a hardliner conservative.

“Larry Hogan has already shown us and told us he is not going to protect abortion rights. And the Republicans he’d be joining in the Senate have made their agenda crystal clear,” Alsobrooks chided on X.

Angela Alsobrooks is expected to spotlight abortion over the next five and a half months amid her battle for the Senate. AP

Alsobrooks, who is vying to become the first black female senator from Maryland, has made clear her intention of hammering Hogan on abortion.

Fresh off his primary victory, Hogan’s campaign has rolled out an ad touting support from Democrats, as he angles to flip the deep blue seat.

Democrats are facing a brutal Senate map in the 2024 election cycle, forced to defend 23 seats, including three held by Independents, while Republicans only have to protect 11.

Given the 51 to 49 split in the Senate, Republicans will only need to flip two seats to recapture control without the tiebreaker vote, which goes to the vice president.

Hogan won reelection as Maryland governor in the 2018 blue wave year 55.4% to 43.5%. Maryland went for President Biden over Trump in 2020 by over 33 percentage points.

The former Maryland governor is not alone in tacking left on abortion as Republicans grapple with bleak polling on the thorny issue ahead of the Nov. 5 election.

Last month, Trump, 77, came out against federal legislation to restrict abortion, calling for the issue to be deferred to the states.

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