You may’ve noticed that the folks over at Red State are causing quite a stir over Gov. Romney’s past views on abortion. Apparently, this is Gov. Romney’s statement which caused the uproar:
“I’ve never called myself pro-choice.”
Of course, readers of EFM know that Gov. Romney ran against Ted Kennedy in 1994, calling for a moratorium on the commonwealth’s abortion laws. These laws were liberal, and on their way to becoming more liberalized. Gov. Romney’s moratorium both respected his constituency and helped reign in the Left’s downward spiral. His pro-life epiphany happened over discussions concerning embryonic stem cell research, and he began to understand how life in this country has been inexcusably cheapened.
Jim Garaghty takes the people who are criticizing the Governor over at RedState to task:
I’m a bit surprised at the absolutist position by many folks who I respect over there. If Romney had run as a pro-life candidate seeking to overhaul either the national or state laws on abortion in either 1994 or 2002, he would have gotten stomped like a Narc at a biker rally, as Dennis Miller would say. (Kennedy beat him in 1994 pretty handily, as is.) I realize that for a lot of folks for whom this is the supreme issue, they won’t accept someone who’s personally pro-life but who accepts the consensus of his state, or doesn’t lead a full-scale charge to change the laws.
The standard they’re applying to Gov. Romney would’ve eliminated several beloved Republican leaders–President Reagan and the first President Bush.
Is Gov. Romney really pro-life? Did he have a change of heart on the issue?
Let’s go to Nathan Burd, an international pro-life activist, for advice. He points out, in an excellent article about Gov. Romney’s pro-life record, the following points:
* He vetoed an emergency contraception bill and offered a compelling case for life in the process.
* He fought efforts to advance embryonic stem cell research in Massachusetts, despite overwhelming opposition.
* He pledged to veto any effort to expand access to RU-486, the abortion pill.
* He has faced constant ridicule from pro-abortion organizations for refusing to give in to their demands.
* He actively promotes abstinence education programs in Massachusetts’ schools. The abstinence movement and the pro-life movement work hand-in-hand to reduce the number of teen pregnancies and to promote true sexual health to America’s youth.
Read the whole article here.
So, what’s the bottom line? I think Ronna Romney (the Governor’s former sister-in-law) summed it up nicely:
I believe that throughout life you are constantly growing and hopefully gaining wisdom. In other words we are a work in progress. That’s why the word “gospel” means good news.
CHARLES adds: Thanks for this summary, Nancy. I highly doubt any of us would be here if we didn’t truly believe Gov. Romney to be pro-life.