Kleefisch supports upholding access to birth control, gay marriage as some fear rollback of civil liberties

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Republican candidate for governor Rebecca Kleefisch will uphold freedoms to access birth control and same-sex marriage if elected as some fear those rights could be at risk if the U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade.

In an interview with CBS 58, Kleefisch said she would not seek to prohibit access to birth control, IUDs and emergency contraception such as Plan B.

"No, birth control will not be illegal when I'm governor of the state of Wisconsin," Kleefisch said.

With U.S. Supreme Court justices expected to rule on the abortion case in the coming days, medical and legal experts say it could open the door to restrictions on other types of reproductive health care.

If Roe is overturned, Wisconsin's 1849 criminal abortion ban would go into effect. The law does not have any exceptions for rape or incest, unless the pregnancy put a mother's life in danger.

Kleefisch supports the 173-year-old ban and said she wouldn't want to add or remove any provisions. Other GOP candidates in the governor race also back the state's abortion ban including construction businessman Tim Michels, business consultant Kevin Nicholson and State Rep. Tim Ramthun.

The primary will be held on Aug. 9.

Views on Gay Marriage

The Supreme Court has been tight-lipped since the leak of the Roe opinion draft, but some opponents believe it could lead to legal challenges targeting same sex-marriage.

Kleefisch, the former lt. governor, said she supports gay marriage and added her views have changed over the years on the issue. In 2010, Kleefisch said gay marriage could lead to people marrying dogs or inanimate objects, remarks she later apologized for.

"This is in the past and I think it needs to be left there," she said. "I am in the same place that I would say as a vast majority of Wisconsinites and Americans are. My opinion has changed…gay marriage will be legal when I am governor of Wisconsin."

Kleefisch's position is in contrast to her GOP primary opponent, Tim Michels, who believes marriage should be between a man and woman.

Wisconsin's 2006 ban on same-sex marriage would go back into effect if the Supreme Court were to reverse its ruling that legalized gay marriage in the U.S.

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