Stacey Abrams, the Democratic candidate for governor of Georgia, pitched abortion as a solution to voters’ concerns about inflation on Wednesday, explaining to Morning Joe viewers that “having kids is why you’re worried about your gas price, it’s why you’re worried about how much food costs.”
Abrams, who lost the 2018 gubernatorial election to incumbent Republican Brian Kemp, was responding to a question about what she would do to address inflation.
“While abortion is an issue, when it’s nowhere near the voters’ interest relative to the cost of gas, food, bread, milk…what can you do as governor to address the concerns of Georgia voters about these viability, daily, hourly problems that they are faced with?” Abrams was asked.
“You can’t divorce being forced to carry an unwanted pregnancy from the economic realities of having a child,” countered Abrams, who argued that “we don’t have the luxury of reducing that or separating them.”
She did not offer specific policy solutions to rising prices beyond making abortion more freely available in the state, instead offering only that “a governor can address housing prices, a governor can address the cost of education, a governor can put money into the pockets of everyday hardworking Georgians instead of giving tax breaks to the wealthy.”
“But let’s not pretend that women – half the population – especially of childbearing age, they understand that having a child is absolutely a financial problem. Only politicians see it as another cultural conversation,” she added.
The Democrats have emphasized abortion in the run-up to the midterm elections in November. A recent analysis found that a third of Democratic ad spending in September was on the issue, despite a New York Times/Siena College poll released earlier this week shows that only 5 percent of voters — whether pro-life or pro-choice — say it is the most important issue facing the country.
Twenty-six percent identified the economy as the most important issue, while 18 percent said it was inflation. Independent women polled favored the GOP over Democrats by an 18-point margin.
In response to Abrams’ comments online, Kemp’s communications director said the governor’s plan to address inflation included a gas tax suspension, a billion-dollar tax refund and a property tax rebate.
Abrams lost by less than two points to Kemp in 2018, a Democratic surge year, and refused to concede, citing unproven voter suppression. She is expected to be defeated by a larger margin in their rematch; that RealClearPolitics the average of the race’s polls shows Kemp with a 5.6 point lead.