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Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin

August 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Pro-life Republican Gov. Matt Bevin leveled a blistering critique against Attorney General and Democrat gubernatorial opponent Andy Beshear on Thursday for refusing to defend Kentucky’s pro-life laws in court, suggesting that Beshear was essentially bought off by the abortion industry.

Kentucky has enacted numerous protections for preborn babies under Bevin, including a ban on abortions sought specifically due to a child’s race, sex, or disability; a ban on second-trimester dismemberment abortion procedures; a ban on abortion once a fetal heartbeat can be detected; and a requirement that women be offered ultrasound images of their children before aborting them.

All of these laws have been tied up in court by legal challenges by pro-abortion groups. Beshear, who identifies as “pro-choice,” defended the ultrasound law on behalf of the state but has refused to do the same for stronger abortion restrictions, for which Bevin has previously criticized him. The incumbent governor intensified that criticism at a Thursday press conference, the Lexington Herald-Leader reported.

“This is a state where we value the sanctity of human life,” Bevin said. “It is the job of the attorney general to defend those laws, whether it’s a heartbeat law, dismemberment law, the eugenics bill, whatever they are.”

“The Marshalls, Mr. and Mrs., maxed out to (Beshear) back in March … in his primary,” he continued, referring to Ernest Marshall, owner of the Louisville abortion facility EMW Women’s Surgical Center, and his wife. “Four days later after they max out to him, he removes himself from the lawsuit. These people are funding their very profitable abortion clinic by funding Andy Beshear’s campaign.”

“This is blood money, straight up,” Bevin declared. “There’s no other term for it. This is the exact definition of it. They are using monies that they have earned from killing Kentuckians to fund a guy whose job it is to defend the laws of this state but refuses to do so.”

“Reasonable and good people can disagree on choice,” but Bevin’s “outlandish language is dangerous and unacceptable,” Beshear campaign manager Eric Hyers responded. 

Beshear has claimed the laws he refused to defend were unconstitutional; pro-lifers argue the heartbeat law in particular was meant to challenge Roe v. Wade’s flawed constitutional interpretation, and that attorneys general have a duty to represent duly-enacted laws regardless of their personal opinions.

Cook Political Report and Inside Elections rate Kentucky’s November 2019 gubernatorial election a toss-up, and political analyst Larry Sabato maintains that the race still leans Republican. In June, a Gravis poll found Bevin leading Beshear by six points.

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