Gov. Kemp doubles down on signing heartbeat abortion bill

ATLANTA — With more actors and directors vowing to boycott the Georgia film industry, Gov. Brian Kemp doubled downed on his decision to sign the heartbeat abortion bill into law.

Channel 2 political reporter Richard Elliot spoke with the governor Monday about the growing protest against the law.

Kemp acknowledges that a lot of people are angry over his decision, but said he stands by it.

“I know they’re mad at me for doing what I said I would do, but I think most Georgians appreciate that,” Kemp told Elliot. “I’m sure people will protest. People protested during the session.”


Elliot was at the ceremony six weeks ago when Kemp signed that bill into law, making it illegal to perform abortions after a hearbeat is first detected, usually around six weeks of pregnancy.

Hundreds of people protested the bill at the capitol and on social media. Actors, directors and others in the film industry protested as well.

Actor/Director Ron Howard and actor Jason Bateman joined that list this past weekend. In April, actress Alyssa Milano showed up at the capitol to protest in person.

“With the support of countless workers in the entertainment industry … we reject this attempt to criminalize women for making the decision that works best for them in their lives,” Milano said at the time.

The film industry brings in an estimated $3 billion a year to Georgia, mostly thanks to the state's generous tax breaks.

Kemp told Elliot he still supports those tax incentives and wants Hollywood to keep shooting movies and TV shows here.

But he also said he will stand firm in his support for the new law.

“A lot of these folks are the same people that worked against me in the election. They said the same thing after I was sworn in, and now they’re saying the same thing after I did what I promised Georgians I would do,” Kemp said.

The heartbeat abortion law is scheduled to go into effect Jan. 1. It is expected to face several legal challenges before then.

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