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A closer look: Raphael Warnock, Herschel Walker clash on abortion

40 percent of the people who filled out our 13WMAZ Listening Lab survey in October said abortion is one of the top issues they want to hear politicians address.

MACON, Ga. — Throughout the U.S. Senate race, abortion and reproductive rights have been top of mind for many Georgia voters-- particularly after two ex-girlfriends of Republican candidate Herschel Walker said he paid for their abortions.

Walker denied the allegations. 

40 percent of the nearly 800 people who filled out our 13WMAZ Listening Lab survey in October said abortion is one of the top issues they want to hear politicians address.

Starting with Herschel Walker, his stance on abortion seems to have changed during the campaign.

Earlier in the campaign, Walker said publicly that he was for banning all abortions with no exceptions.

He said at at least two events--once while speaking to press at the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame in Macon in May and again in August when he was speaking at an African American Voices of the Faith and Freedom Coalition roundtable in Austell.

Walker's campaign streamed that forum on his Facebook page.

"I believe in life. And I said if anyone wants to have an exception, I said not in my book," Walker said 

Then in October at the one and only debate between the candidates, Walker said, he never said that. But rather, he says he supports Georgia's heartbeat bill. The law was ruled unconstitutional by a Fulton County judge last week. 

"I said I support the heartbeat bill. I said I support the Georgia heartbeat bill of the people from Governor Kemp. and I said that has exceptions in it," Walker said. 

The Georgia law bans most abortions once a detectable human heartbeat is present. But the law includes exceptions for rape and incest as long as a police report is filed. 

It also allows for later abortions when the mother's life is at risk or if a medical condition makes the fetus unviable. 

Meanwhile, Democrat Incumbent Raphael Warnock says he's fighting to keep abortions affordable and accessible. He says government shouldn't be part of the decision at all.

"A patient's room is too narrow and small and cramped for a woman, her doctor and the United States government. We are witnessing right now what happens when politicians, most of them men, pile into patients' rooms," Warnock said. 

Warnock says being a minister has pushed him even more to be "pro-choice," by standing against maternal mortality and saying that a woman's life should not be in danger if she gives birth. 

Georgia voters could have heard more from each candidate Monday night. 

 Both Senator Raphael Warnock and Herschel Walker were invited by the Atlanta Press Club to debate. 

13WMAZ's Ashlyn Webb was set to panel the debate. 

Neither candidate committed to debating.

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