In light of the off-year elections this week that saw Democrats take home decisive victories on issues like abortion, Alabama GOP Chairman John Wahl says improving his party’s messaging will play a decisive role in helping Republican chances in 2024.
In Ohio, voters overwhelmingly supported a ballot measure enshrining abortion protections into law; in Kentucky, Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear won a decisive victory campaigning on protecting abortion rights; and in Pennsylvania, Democrat Dan McCaffery was elected to the state Supreme Court after vowing to protect abortion rights.
Speaking with Alabama Daily News by phone after Wednesday night’s Republican primary debate in Miami, FL, Wahl said his party “has to do a better job of messaging on the issue of abortion.”
“Something we can all agree on is the fact that abortion is a tragedy, no one wants to be in that situation,” Wahl said.
“What I see from the Democrat Party is that immediately they jump to abortion as their first solution, but I want the first solution to be things like adoption, making adoption easier, helping mothers in need, tax credits for post and prenatal care… things we can do to actually help those in need.”
Wahl was also pressed on whether abortion would be a liability for Republicans in 2024 this week during an appearance on Good Morning America, where he reiterated that improving messaging was key. Wahl also extended his theory that improved messaging on several issues, such as environmentalism, would drastically help Republicans in 2024.
“I care a lot about our environment – that’s something that I love that’s important to me – and so I think (there can be) better communication from the Republican Party, that (we do) care about conservation, we do care about the environment, and we want to help things be better for the people of America, and also for our climate in general,” he said.
“This is not a thing that needs to be one party versus the other. I’m also concerned about what China is putting into the environment, and I think we need to look past just global warming to other chemicals as well.”
One topic that Wahl said he felt Republicans held the rhetorical edge against Democrats was foreign policy.
Disparities in support for foreign aid have grown between Republicans and Democrats, as have concerns over getting militarily involved in conflicts abroad. As of October, 52% of Democrats supported sending more weapons to Ukraine, compared to just 35% of Republicans, per a Reuters poll.
In a Quinnipiac University poll published Nov. 2, 52% of Republicans indicated that they were “very concerned” that the United States would be drawn into a military conflict, compared to just 30% of Democrats.
“I feel like the concerns for young Republicans are very similar actually to a lot of the concerns that Democrats are going to have, or people in general across the country,” Wahl said.
“There’s been a major shift between the two parties over foreign policy recently, and I think that’s something the Republicans defend, but also not getting us into conflicts is something that’s very appealing to young voters.”
Less than a year away, the 2024 presidential election will be Nov. 5, 2024.