Pennsylvania Lt. Gov Nominee Calls Women Concerned About Abortion Bans ‘Emotional’

Carrie DelRosso, Doug Mastriano's running mate, said women who are pro-abortion rights won't vote: "They yell and scream, and they forget to go to the polls.”

Pennsylvania Lt. Gov Nominee Calls Women Concerned About Abortion Bans ‘Emotional’
Photo:Aimee Dilger/SOPA Images/LightRocket (Getty Images)

Pennsylvania’s Republican-controlled state legislature has been trying for years to restrict abortion, but term-limited Gov. Tom Wolf (D) has vetoed their attempts. If Doug Mastriano, the Republican state senator and Christian Nationalist, becomes governor, he could sign an abortion ban into law—a fact his running mate would apparently prefer their supporters not talk about.

Over the weekend, the GOP nominee for Lieutenant Governor, state representative Carrie DelRosso, said Pennsylvania women concerned about the possibility of an abortion ban are simply “emotional” people who won’t vote. This was in response to a question about how the campaign can beat the Democratic nominee for governor, Attorney General Josh Shapiro. DelRosso suggested to supporters who’d be knocking on doors to avoid the topic of abortion altogether: “Don’t go down that hole.”

Instead, DelRosso told canvassers to focus on “kitchen tabletop” issues of inflation, crime, and schools, according to audio obtained by Pittsburgh’s NPR affiliate, WESA, because she thinks pro-abortion-rights women won’t vote anyway.

She said she had “many women calling my office screaming. They’re emotional voters.” But, she said, “I don’t think they’re gonna vote…They yell and scream, and they forget to go to the polls.”

Yelling and screaming about the possibility of being forced by the state to continue a pregnancy feels like the correct reaction. These women most definitely will vote. DelRosso did not respond to WESA’s multiple requests for comment.

Signe Espinoza, the executive director at Planned Parenthood Pennsylvania Advocates, said in a statement to WESA: “It’s disheartening and disturbing to hear how she’s talking about voters—especially women. How sexist is it to talk about women that way?” Espinoza added that Pennsylvanians know exactly what’s on the line after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. “Voters are really in tune with the fact that our rights are on the ballot this year.”

Shapiro, the Democratic nominee, supports abortion access and is currently leading in polling by double digits. But Pennsylvania voters have defied the polls before—we need only look to 2016 for that.

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