Abortion law escalates war of words between Gov. Bevin and Attorney General Beshear
Beshear refuses to defend law banning late-term abortions. Bevin accuses him of pandering to his base.
FRANKFORT, Ky. (WDRB) -- Kentucky's new abortion laws have the state's Attorney General and governor going at it again.
Attorney General Andy Beshear's decision not to defend Kentucky's law banning abortion after 20 weeks, has once again ramped up his war of words with Gov Matt Bevin.
"It has been very clear in the decisions that have come down, that a legislature can't do what this one did. And that bill is currently unconstitutional on its face," Beshear told reporters as he defended his decision not to defend the state in a lawsuit filed by the EMW abortion clinic and the ACLU.
They're suing to block a law passed by lawmakers last week banning late term abortions.
"My first job is to protect the Constitution," Beshear said, calling the abortion ban, "unconstitutional."
But in a video posted to Facebook, Republican Gov. Matt Bevin blasted Beshear, who is a Democrat, accusing him of refusing to do his job.
"Our Attorney General apparently is under the impression that he gets to pick and choose when he does his job. He was elected, and is in fact being paid by you, the taxpayers of Kentucky and the voters of Kentucky, to defend the laws of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. He's not allowed to just pander to his base," said Bevin.
Beshear fired back.
"Well, the governor doesn't have a great track record at understanding and following the law," he said.
Beshear has sued Bevin over several of his executive orders.
WDRB asked Beshear whether his decision about the abortion law was strictly legal or also personal and ideological.
"It is solely legal based on my oath in Kentucky to defend the Constitution," he replied.
Beshear says it would not be appropriate to reveal his personal view on abortion, since he does plan to defend in court the other abortion law passed by the General Assembly requiring an ultrasound before the procedure.
Beshear says the constitutionality of the ultrasound law is less certain.
"I can't and shouldn't talk about my own personal views. They haven't come into play here at all," he said.
Bevin says he'll hire a private law firm to defend the abortion ban.
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