Democratic gubernatorial nominee Wendy Davis said this week that comments made by one of her opponent's surrogates calling rape and incest "minor issues" prove that the Republican Party does not value women.
During a debate on Lone Star Politics, which is produced by The Dallas Morning News and KXAS, Democratic strategist Matt Angle reminded viewers that Republican candidate Greg Abbott even opposed abortion in cases of rape and incest.
"He would impose himself and others like himself in the government to decide," Angle said.
GOP strategist Matt Mackowiak shot back that a ban on abortion was "the law of the land" because Davis had not been successful with her attempt to filibuster it.
"Texas is a pro-life state. We can get into minor issues that are one percent or two percent the problem," he explained. "But ultimately, Texas is a strong pro-life state. Abbott would love to fight this campaign on that issue alone from here on out but Wendy knows that's not strategically wise."
"That's the first time I've heard rape or incest called a 'minor issue,'" Angle interrupted.
"It's minor in terms of the percentage of cases. That's all I'm saying," Mackowiak replied.
"A victim of rape or incest is not a minor problem," Angle insisted.
Davis addressed the comments on Twitter following the broadcast.
"[Tell Greg Abbott that] banning abortion in cases of rape and incest is not a 'minor issue,'" she wrote.
In a statement released on Monday Davis spokesperson Zac Petkanas called Mackowiak's remarks "disgusting."
"Rape and incest are horrific crimes, not 'minor issues.' This disgusting viewpoint illustrates exactly why Greg Abbott is so out of touch when he says he would make abortion illegal even in the cases of rape and incest," the statement said.
A spokesperson for Abbott confirmed to KXAS that Mackowiak was not employed by the campaign or officially advising it.