« As CBN Turns 50, Pat Robertson Mostly Bows Out of Politics | Main | Sojourners Among Those Occupying Wall Street »

October 5, 2011

As Economic Concerns Remain High, Mitt Romney, Others Tackle Abortion

Life ethics issues like abortion have not defined campaign debates so far, with economic issues taking the lead and hot-button topics like Social Security and immigration also taking center stage. In an interview with Mike Huckabee on Fox News, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney tackled abortion over the weekend, calling himself “pro-life” and later earning praise from Pat Robertson.

“[It would] be wonderful if everyone in the country agreed with you and me that life begins in conception and that there’s a sanctity of life that’s part of a civilized society and that we’re all going to agree there should not be legal abortion in the nation,” Romney said. “But I don’t think that’s where we are right now. But I do think where the majority of the American people would go is say let the states make the decisions.”

Romney's position on abortion as governor of Massachusetts took a similar stance toward state's rights. As governor, he protected his state's pro-choice laws, pledging he would not impose his views on the majority. However, he also said during his time in office his personal views “evolved and deepened” to become more conservative.

Over the weekend, Romney said he would “absolutely” have supported a a constitutional amendment to establish the definition of the beginning of life as conception, but that it would not have made it past the 85 percent Democratic state legislature.

Romney stopped short of saying he would support such an amendment as president.

“I’d make sure the progress that’s been made to provide for life and to protect human life would not be progress that is reversed,” he said.

He said as president he would specifically appoint justices to the Supreme Court who would “have a conviction to follow the law and not create the law from the bench,” with an eye to reversing Roe v. Wade and returning decisions about the legality of abortion back to the individual states.

The forum appeared to signal a deliberate shift toward addressing socially conservative voters on Romney's part. Agreeing to an interview with Huckabee was an interesting choice for Romney, since his Mormon faith was one point of controversy between the two rivals in 2008.

Romney has dismissed his Mormonism as a potential stumbling block to his 2012 campaign, saying most voters have moved on from it. This weekend, broadcaster Pat Robertson called Romney “an outstanding Christian,” sidestepping what other evangelicals consider foundational doctrinal concerns. Robertson, as head of the Christian Coalition, endorsed Romney's competitor Rudy Giuliani in 2008 but does not plan to endorse this year, and Romney has not acquired any unusual endorsements from evangelical leaders.

Romney has steered clear of social issues for the most part in his campaign so far, instead focusing on the economy and his unique experience as a candidate due to his work in the private sector. He refused to sign the Susan B. Anthony Pro-life Pledge, which has been signed by most of the other major GOP candidates, with the exception of Herman Cain.

“I am pro-life and believe that abortion should be limited to only instances of rape, incest, or to save the life of the mother,” Romney wrote in a June op-ed explaining his stance. “As much as I share the goals of the Susan B. Anthony List, its well-meaning pledge is overly broad and would have unintended consequences. That is why I could not sign it.”

Herman Cain offered a similar reason, saying he could not sign the pledge because the job of the president is not to push legislation. The pledge asks signers to commit to pushing legislation to end abortion, as well as nominate judges and appoint executive branch officials who are opposed to abortion. Cain has never held office and does not have a record to defend, but says he opposes all abortion rights, even in cases of rape or incest, a position he has held publicly since 2004.

Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) defined the pro-life stance as a “foundational issue” in the presidential race during a campaign event in Iowa this week.

“We can’t forget what truly is the foundational issue which is the right to life,” she said. “And I have always stood for that right and as president of the United States I will stand for life from conception until natural death.”

The comments precede all the major candidates’ participation in the Family Research Council's Values Voter Summit this weekend, a series of speaking events targeting a largely evangelical audience.

Comments

In other words, we don't mind someone running the country into the ground and letting sick people die as long as they're pro-life.

Way back during those raucous "Town Hall Meetings," the proto-teabaggers were screaming bloody murder about some kind of imaginary "death panels." Now it seems that those same teabaggers want to cut Medicaid and Medicare benefits so the beneficiaries can just die a slower death. But when it comes to unplanned pregnancies, the GOP faves are just falling all over each other to equate zygotes and blastocysts will adult human beings. Truly bizarro world.

I guess Shannon and Chuck aren't worried about bearing false witness.

Name one false thing either of us has said.

Pat Robertson declared that "Mitt Romney is an outstanding Christian." Will Pat please stop making statements that have no basis in truth! Mormonism is not Christian--it is a cult. Mitt Romney cannot be a Mormon and Christian at the same time. I'm sure Mitt Romney is a good man, honorable and intelligent--however, he is not a Christian as long as he is a Mormon! Anyone who believes otherwise should do minimum research on what Mormonism teaches and believes...they might be shocked!

To understand Abortion on the biblical(Christian) point of view. Daniel talks of the Anti/False Christ as "HE WILL NOT REGARD THE DESIRE OF WOMEN: Which basic desire is to bring forth Children, the fulfillment of every Female species. Since he tries to block this not just through abortions but using extreme means even though deceptions like planned parenthood, gay promotions & relationships, through Church Apostasy, etc.All of them resulting in being counter productive even though appearing productive Such a person is rated as Anti Christ-against Christ or False Christ-Against Christ through Deceit, against the will of GOD. The Bible states the Will of GOD when HE told Abraham of the manner " Seeds as the sands & stars", which cannot be numbered or tagged(Mark of the Beast)These words suggest the nature of GOD Himself as One who cannot be measured in any thing or in anyway.

Gee, I am a woman and I do not desire to "bring forth" children. I do want to see children brought up safe, wanted, fed, clothed, sheltered, loved, educated, to live in a safe world, preferably as free of unsafe and illegal drugs as possible, with low crime, a good environment, cooperative people, a good government, an educated society--that is a LOT to ask, I know--a virtual utopia. I don't want to see CHILDREN bearing children, or anyone forced to bear a child she does not want, or should not have due to health issues, or such. All children should be wanted. Everyone ought to be able to see a doctor when he/she is sick, not just people who have good-paying jobs or health insurance or who are rich. People ought to refrain from jumping to nasty conclusions about other people. Behind every stranger's face is another person just like you trying their best, but walking a different road.

Life is more than I & I, more of my I.

Sadly, as we get closer to the election next year, you'll hear even more bickering among candidates and religion may be in the middle of it.

Whoever gets elected, hopefully they'll keep medical insurance rateslow and affordable.

The best policy is to keep abortion safe and legal. That's what most Americans want, and quite rightfully so. Criminalizing abortion accomplishes nothing but allows those who are self-righteous to feel better about themselves.

No, the majority of Americans do not want to keep abortions "safe and legal" according to the Gallup poll taken in May 2011. By a 24 percent margin, 61-37 percent, Americans take the pro-life view that abortions should either be legal under no circumstances or legal only under a few circumstances. Those few circumstances are for rape or incest.