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State Rep. Ron Hanks sits in the Colorado State House Chamber in Denver on May 10, 2022.
State Rep. Ron Hanks sits in the Colorado State House Chamber in Denver on May 10, 2022.Hyoung Chang / Denver Post via Getty Images file

Midterm roundup: Abortion divides Colorado Republicans

Democrats have signaled that they would rather face the more conservative candidates.

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GOP candidates competing in two statewide primaries in Colorado being decided Tuesday are divided on the issue of abortion as they seek to compete in this Democratic-leaning state. 

In the Senate race, construction company owner Joe O’Dea is competing against state Rep. Ron Hanks to take on Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet. O’Dea has painted himself as a consensus builder, striking some more moderate positions, including allowing abortions at early stages of pregnancy, when the mother’s life is at risk and in cases of rape and incest. Hanks is staunchly opposed to abortion rights, without exceptions.

In the governor’s race, businesswoman and University of Colorado Regent Heidi Ganahl is facing Greg Lopez, a former state director for the Small Business Administration. Ganahl describes herself as “pro-life with exceptions for rape, incest, health of the mother and health of the fetus,” while Lopez opposes abortions without exceptions

Democrats have signaled that they would rather face the more conservative candidates, launching ads to elevate them in their primaries, with two Democratic groups launching TV spots noting both Hanks’ and Lopez’s positions on abortion. 

Elsewhere on the campaign trail:

Alaska Senate: An outside group backing GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s re-election is up with a new TV ad attacking Murkowski’s top GOP opponent, Kelly Tshibaka, on access to birth control.  

Arizona Senate: Former President Donald Trump stands with Blake Masters in a new TV ad, where Trump reiterates his endorsement of Masters and attacks two of Masters’ opponents, Mark Brnovich and Jim Lamon.

Michigan Governor: Ryan Kelley, the real estate broker recently arrested for his role in the 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol, says that arrest helped boost his name recognition and elevate his candidacy for governor

Wisconsin Governor: Wisconsin Democratic Gov. Tony Evers says he’ll grant clemency to doctors who are charged with providing an abortion. In the GOP primary, three of the four GOP candidates participated in a debate Monday night.

Virginia-07Axios reports on audio from GOP nominee Yesli Vega where she said she wouldn’t be surprised if fewer women become pregnant because of rape.