State of Tennessee Archives: on Abortion


Bill Lee: Seeing premature granddaughter strengthened my resolve

I've proposed legislation that would defend and protect the life of an unborn baby from the time their heartbeat can be detected. I want to share a personal story that has strengthened my resolve.

A few months ago, my son and his wife had identical twin baby girls, delivered months before they were due, at a time when most babies their size would still be in their mother's womb. When I walked into the neonatal intensive care unit, I stared in wonder at a 1-lb-5-oz baby girl with tubes and cords and monitors, fighting for her life. As I watched little Annie, I was reminded once again that every life is precious. Every life is precious, and we will support pro-life policy in this state because everything precious is worth protecting.

Source: 2020 State of the State Address to the Tennessee legislature Feb 3, 2020

Manny Sethi: A strong supporter of the Heartbeat Bill

I am pro-life. Period. As a doctor, I know that life begins at conception, and for too long politicians have failed to stand up for the sanctity of life. That is why I am a such a strong supporter of the heartbeat bill here in Tennessee and will do the same when I'm in D.C. We need to confirm judges who will protect life, and the most vulnerable - the unborn.
Source: 2020 Tennessee Senate campaign website, DrMannyForSenate.com Jan 12, 2020

Bill Hagerty: Vehemently opposes taxpayer funds for abortion

Bill vehemently opposes taxpayer funds for abortion and abortion providers; he will fight to defund Planned Parenthood. He's 100 percent pro-life. He will work to pass Pain Capable Legislation and a bill that requires medical care for babies born alive as the result of a botched abortion. He will support constitutionalist judges who support the right to life. Bill will work to improve our foster care and adoption programs.
Source: 2020 Tennessee Senate campaign website TeamHagerty.com Dec 24, 2019

Bill Hagerty: Possible exceptions for rape/incest, "challenging" situation

Hagerty said, "I hate the thought of abortion in any case. I think it's a very challenging situation--the situation of rape or incest," he said. "It's terrible. I think it's a very infrequent situation. And were it ever to come up, I hope to make sure that it's one of the least frequent things that ever happens and that other alternatives are made available to people."
Source: Nashville Tennessean on 2020 Tennessee Senate race Dec 4, 2019

Manny Sethi: Opposed to exceptions for rape and incest

Sethi said the only exception he would consider for abortion would be in cases in which the life of the mother is in jeopardy. "I also believe that those are the rarest of cases and usually you can save both the mother and baby," he said. In terms of exceptions for cases of rape and incest, Sethi said the issue was personal. "I've taken care of patients who were conceived (after) rape," he said, adding he is opposed to such exceptions.
Source: Nashville Tennessean on 2020 Tennessee Senate race Dec 4, 2019

James Mackler: Woman's medical decisions should be between her & her doctor

Tennessee Republicans have passed a bill that would impose some of the harshest restrictions on abortion in the United States.

If you agree with James that a woman's medical decisions should be between her and her doctor, add your name [to our email list].

Source: 2020 Tennessee Senate campaign website JamesMackler.com Sep 9, 2019

Tim Burchett: 100% rating from Tennessee Right to Life

Tim is proudly pro-life and earned a 100 percent rating with Tennessee Right to Life. In the state legislature, he sponsored legislation to amend the state constitution to protect unborn life. As your next congressman, he will defend life and make sure y
Source: Tennessee Right to Life 2018 endorsements in TN-2 election Nov 1, 2018

Bill Lee: Ban abortion, even for rape and incest

Q: Abortion: Mostly ban or mostly legal?

Karl Dean (D): Legal. "Between her and her doctor and her family and her faith. Politicians should not insert themselves."

Bill Lee (R): Ban, even for rape and incest. "Any restriction that would limit abortions." Supports "Heartbeat Bill" banning at around six weeks.

Q: Allow employers to withhold contraceptive coverage from employees if disagree with it morally?

Karl Dean (D): Unknown.

Bill Lee (R): Yes. "Our constitution protects an absolute, fundamental right to live your life--at home & in the workplace--according to your values & your faith."

Q: Let Planned Parenthood receive public funds for non-abortion healthcare?

Karl Dean (D): Unclear. Supportive of expanding women's health services.

Bill Lee (R): No. Make sure they don't get another dime of state money.

Source: 2018 CampusElect.org Issue Guide on Tennessee Governor race Oct 9, 2018

Karl Dean: Politicians shouldn't insert themselves in abortion decision

Q: Abortion: Mostly ban or mostly legal?

Karl Dean (D): Legal. "Between her and her doctor and her family and her faith. Politicians should not insert themselves."

Bill Lee (R): Ban, even for rape and incest. "Any restriction that would limit abortions." Supports "Heartbeat Bill" banning at around six weeks.

Q: Allow employers to withhold contraceptive coverage from employees if disagree with it morally?

Karl Dean (D): Unknown.

Bill Lee (R): Yes. "Our constitution protects an absolute, fundamental right to live your life--at home & in the workplace--according to your values & your faith."

Q: Let Planned Parenthood receive public funds for non-abortion healthcare?

Karl Dean (D): Unclear. Supportive of expanding women's health services.

Bill Lee (R): No. Make sure they don't get another dime of state money.

Source: 2018 CampusElect.org Issue Guide on Tennessee Governor race Oct 9, 2018

Marsha Blackburn: Ban abortion; ban public funds for Planned Parenthood

Q: Abortion: Mostly ban or mostly legal?

Marsha Blackburn (R): Ban. Multiple votes to ban or restrict. Also ban Planned Parenthood receiving public funds for non-abortion health services.

Phil Bredesen (D): Legal, but hasn't made high priority.

Source: 2018 CampusElect.org Issue Guide on Tennessee Senate race Oct 9, 2018

Phil Bredesen: Keep abortion legal, but not high priority

Q: Abortion: Mostly ban or mostly legal?

Marsha Blackburn (R): Ban. Multiple votes to ban or restrict. Also ban Planned Parenthood receiving public funds for non-abortion health services.

Phil Bredesen (D): Legal, but hasn't made high priority.

Source: 2018 CampusElect.org Issue Guide on Tennessee Senate race Oct 9, 2018

Bill Lee: Against abortion: life begins at conception

I believe that life begins at conception and that every life is precious. Our unborn are gifts from God, and we can't live in a society where children are treated as disposable.˙That's why I am pro-life, pro-child, and pro-family. We owe it to every parent to make Tennessee the best state in the country to raise a family.
Source: 2018 Tennessee Gubernatorial website BillLee.com Jul 4, 2018

Diane Black: Opposes funding of Planned Parenthood

As your next Governor, I will continue to fight to stop taxpayer $$ going to Planned Parenthood.
Source: Facebook posting on 2018 Tennessee gubernatorial race Aug 18, 2017

David Kustoff: No exceptions for any circumstances

Q: Under what circumstances should abortion be allowed?

Kustoff: Should not be allowed; no exceptions.

Q: Considering all issues (social, economic, national security, etc.), which political philosophy best describes you?

Kustoff: Very Conservative

Source: 2016 AFA Action iVoterGuide on Tennessee House race Nov 8, 2016

David Kustoff: Life begins at conception

Standing for West Tennessee Values: I will always fight for the West Tennessee values we so strongly believe in. I believe life begins at conception, I believe marriage is between a man and a woman, and I believe we have an unequivocal constitutional right to keep and bear arms.
Source: 2016 Tennessee House campaign website KustoffForCongress.com Nov 8, 2016

Terry Adams: Pro-choice

Both Adams and Ball are in sync with contemporary Democrats on issues like women's rights and support for gays. Both are for raising the minimum wage and for expansion of Medicaid and protection of Medicare and Social Security from privatization schemes.
Source: Memphis Flyer on 2014 Tennessee Senate race Aug 6, 2014

Gordon Ball: Opposes Amendment 1 banning abortion for rape & incest

The Gordon Ball campaign publicly calls on Sen. Lamar Alexander to announce how he intends to vote on Amendment 1 when he returns from Washington to cast his ballot. Amendment 1 will appear on the ballot [including]: "Nothing in this Constitution secures or protects a right to abortion or requires the funding of an abortion."

"It's a fair question, Yes or No?" said Gordon Ball, Democratic candidate for US Senate. "Over the past several years, and particularly during this primary season, we've seen Lamar taking more extreme positions seemingly to shore up the fringe elements on his far right."

"This is an extreme form of government overreach into the private healthcare decisions of a woman," Ball added. "How would Lamar feel if one of his family members was a victim of rape, incest or the life of the mother was in danger? Does he believe the State of Tennessee should force these decisions, or should the decision be made by the woman with her family and medical professional?"

Source: Nashville Post on 2014 Tennessee Senate race Jul 16, 2014

  • The above quotations are from State of Tennessee Politicians: Archives.
  • Click here for definitions & background information on Abortion.
  • Click here for other issues (main summary page).
2020 Presidential contenders on Abortion:
  Democrats running for President:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 Third Party Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (L-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Howie Hawkins (G-NY)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Howard Schultz(I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
Republicans running for President:
Sen.Ted Cruz(R-TX)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich(R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence(R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
Pres.Donald Trump(R-NY)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld(R-MA & L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
Sen.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
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Page last updated: Jan 29, 2021