U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham probably thought he had come up with compromise on abortion that both parties in Congress could support.
Instead he stirred up a hornet's nest.
Last week, the South Carolina Republican proposed a nationwide ban on abortion after 15 weeks.
Since the U.S. Supreme Court reversed Roe v. Wade, some GOP-controlled states have instituted near-total abortion bans. While some states with Democratic legislatures have more liberal abortion laws, including abortions after the first trimester.
Polls consistently show most Americans of both parties oppose a total ban on legal abortion. That has given Democrats an issue to exploit ahead of the midterm elections. But the same polls show most are also against abortion on demand in later stages of pregnancy.
Graham's plan was designed to help neutralize that Democrats' political edge and offer a reasonable compromise that would rein in the extremes on either side.
Didn't work out that way.
Democrats are against for the most part, saying Graham's proposal is far too restrictive, not much better than a total ban. Republicans don't want any part of it, saying it's radical capitulation to the pro-choice crowd.
It's doubtful the parties will find any common ground on legal abortion anytime soon. The big question is what will that mean to voters in November?