The leading Democratic candidate for governor in Arizona purportedly believes minors should have the right to procure abortions without parental consent.
David Garcia, a professor at Arizona State University, shared his policy position during a July campaign event geared toward female voters. A portion of his comments were captured in a recording uploaded to YouTube this week.
On the audio recording, a portion of which seems to have been edited, a female audience member asks Garcia, “Do you think someone who is a minor — I have two little sisters who are like 13 and 14 — do you think that a minor should be allowed to have an abortion without parental consent?”
While the Democratic candidate called the woman’s question “tough,” he said it’s important to understand how difficult the situation would be for the underage girl seeking an abortion.
“In that very difficult crossroads, in that place where there are very few places to turn,” Garcia explained, “I want them to have the ability to go to a professional, to go to a counselor, to make that decision with their assistance. So, yes, I do.”
As it stands right now, Arizona state law requires notarized parental consent before a minor can procure an abortion, though it does allow for judicial overrides. Minors can sidestep parental permission by obtaining legal authorization from a state superior court judge.
Garcia, who has been endorsed by the Arizona chapters of both NARAL Pro-Choice America and Planned Parenthood, has pledged to veto any legislation that “infringes on women’s reproductive rights,” including access to abortion.
“Women have fought too long and too hard to see their rights infringed upon and we need a strong governor in Arizona who will make sure we do not go backwards,” he said.