Shannon Grove: I Never Blamed Abortion for the Drought

Shannon Grove (Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press)
Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press
San Diego, CA

California Assemblywoman Shannon Grove (R-Bakersfield) is firing back against attacks suggesting she told a pro-life group that California’s drought is the result of abortion, a claim she says she never made.

Grove spoke at the June 1 California ProLife Council banquet in Sacramento.

Select comments from Grove’s speech at that event have been broadcast in local and national media headlines. RH Reality Check, a pro-choice organization, highlighted a perceived reference to passage of Texas’ HB 2 legislation: “Texas was in a long period of drought until Governor Perry signed the fetal pain bill.”

HB 2 includes a ban on abortions starting after 20 weeks. According to RH Reality Check, Grove followed with the words, “It rained that night. Now God has His hold on California.”

Rawstory ran a piece based on the RH story, calling Grove a “Bible-waving California lawmaker.” MSNBC and the Huffington Post both put out pieces referencing the RH article as well.

On Monday, Grove released a Q&A on her statements that night, and her persistent work on water-related issues in California.

Did she say God caused the California drought or that the drought is the result of abortions? “No,” she states, “I did not say that our drought is caused by God, nor did I say it is caused because of abortion.”

Grove also says that she did not say God made it rain in Texas because the governor signed the fetal pain bill. “I did not say, that God made it rain because of the bill. I did not say God has a hold on California, (insinuating a threat). I did say I believe with all my heart that the Lord has his hand on California (in the sense of a blessing to come.)”

“I do know there are millions of Californians praying for this state,” she said. “I believe God answers prayer.”

Grove put out a video earlier this year that highlights “how the state’s water shortage crisis has been compounded by poor legislative decisions–not properly managing our water resources and refusing to build water storage for decades.” In the video, she interviews farmers from California’s drought-stricken Central Valley. Grove, who represents part of that region, notes that the video has received over 350,000 Facebook views.

On April 1 ,California Governor Jerry Brown instituted unprecedented 25% mandatory water cuts statewide through an executive order. It was the first time in history such a measure had been taken in the state.

Grove pointed to her work co-authoring AB 311 to streamline environmental review for water storage projects. The legislature killed her bill, while expedited review for a Sacramento basketball stadium was approved, she notes.

Recently, Grove also spoke out against AB 775 before the State Assembly passed the bill. If passed by the State Senate and signed into law, critics say, it would force California’s crisis pregnancy centers to choose to promote abortion or face heavy fines.

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