RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — When the U.S. Supreme Court issued its opinion on Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, it essentially overturned Roe v. Wade. From there, a number of states immediately started working on tougher abortion laws.

Being pro-life has historically been a safe platform for Republicans because there was little chance any new restrictive laws could be enacted. But that’s now changed. Democrats are gaining ground in the polls, winning special elections and voters in Kansas overwhelmingly said no to new abortion laws.

“Now all of a sudden they can pass them and they’re having their bluff called, as it were, by the new freedom. So I think prudence is taking over where posturing had been the preferred conservative stance on this,” said political commentator George Will.

As access to abortion is rallying voters, some of that ‘prudence’ George Will refers to includes the removal of abortion references from campaign websites. We’re seeing that across the country including the front page of Bo Hines’ website. The Republican is running for North Carolina’s 13th congressional district.

When CBS 17’s Russ Bowen asked Hines about his stance on abortion during the May primary Hines said, “I believe abortion is murder, unequivocally.” When asked if that included rape, incest or the life of the mother Hines’ said, “I think anytime the woman’s life in in danger, and this goes back to my Christian core fundamental beliefs, that you protect the mother.”

Hines’ campaign told CBS 17 that he maintains this same position today.

So why would Republicans not clarify their position while campaigning? Particularly when it may open the opportunity to win votes from independents? There’s no harm in it at all and there’s huge political jeopardy in ignoring that,” said Will.

Will, who is pro-life, said that’s because the majority of Americans, although at varying degrees, believe in abortion access.

“What Republicans are learning is that the American people are about where Europe has come down on the subject. That is no abortion after 15 or 20 weeks, exceptions for rape, incest or life of the mother. That would preserve the right to about 97 percent of the abortions that occur in the United States,” he said.

“I think we’re going to settle down to a kind of temperate centrist position. People have always denied you can’t split the difference on abortion. Well, you can actually. European societies as different as Ireland and Finland and Portugal have done so,” Will added.

North Carolina’s republican-controlled legislature has taken no action on new abortion legislation since the Dobbs decision. But a federal judge, at the request of Republican leadership, did reinstate North Carolina’s 20 week abortion law.

NC Senate Leader Phil Berger has said he does not support a total ban on abortion and does support exception for rape, incest and the life of the mother.

Berger’s position differs from House Speaker Tim Moore who said he supports a ban after a fetal heartbeat can be detected, as early as six weeks into pregnancy. But Moore also said he supports exceptions for rape, incest and the life of the mother.