Top GOP candidates talk penalties, prosecution for abortion

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BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Idaho Republican gubernatorial candidate Tommy Ahlquist once promised to sign legislation allowing for the prosecution of women who have had abortions, while challenger Lt. Gov. Brad Little offered tepid support for the proposed bill but doubted the proposal would stand up in court.

Ahlquist and Little were asked about the proposal six months ago during a gubernatorial forum hosted by a conservative Christian podcast in northern Idaho.

At the time, their comments received little attention. However, the issue has received increased scrutiny after Republican state Sen. Bob Nonini went on the same show last week and said he supported harsher punishments for women seeking abortions.

The hard-line stance is the latest move from high-profile candidates in Idaho and other Republican-dominated states escalating anti-abortion rhetoric along the campaign trail in an attempt to woo the GOP base's most conservative voters.

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