Republican U.S. Rep. Diane Black, who has sought to chip away at access to family planning, announced on Wednesday the launch of her campaign for governor of Tennessee.
“Most people in politics say the right things, but they never fight for the right things,” Black said in a campaign video launching her gubernatorial bid. “We believe in absolute truths” in Tennessee, she continued, including that “a life is a life.”
“That’s the kind of governor I will be,” said Black, touting her role in passing anti-choice legislation and her support for what she called “secure borders.”
Black has long aligned herself with anti-choice activists, including discredited extremist group Live Action. In addition to introducing legislation to defund Planned Parenthood, Black was a member of the GOP-led “witch hunt” into the health-care organization based on deceptively edited videos released by the Center for Medical Progress, an anti-choice front group. She led the charge in shredding family planning safeguards this year.
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Black joins state Sen. Mae Beavers, former state Economic and Development Commissioner Randy Boyd, Tennessee House Speaker Beth Harwell, and business owner Bill Lee in an increasingly crowded field for the Republican nomination for governor. Beavers has sponsored legislation rejecting the U.S. Supreme Court’s legalization of same-sex marriage as well as anti-choice bills such as a 20-week abortion ban and a forced ultrasound measure.
The nonpartisan Cook Political Report rated the gubernatorial seat in June as “likely” to go to a Republican, meaning that the race is “not considered competitive at this point but has the potential to become engaged.”