On The Road

December 28th, 2011

Bachmann’s Confusing Answers on Late Term Abortion

Michele Bachmann frequently touts her pro-life bona fides on the campaign trail. No one denies the Minnesota congresswoman has been a strong proponent for life. However, her statements on late term abortion are confusing and should be concerning to Iowa Caucus goers. That includes comments she made Tuesday in Council Bluffs.

The confusion began over two months ago. During a campaign event in Des Moines, Bachmann said late term abortion bans are “a state issue”. On Tuesday, TheIowaRepublican.com asked Bachmann if she stands by that statement. She dodged the question. Twice.

Here is the original exchange, from October, after TheIowaRepublican.com asked Bachman for her stance on a late term abortion ban that was debated in the Iowa legislature earlier this year:

TheIowaRepublican.com: Where do you come down on that issue? Do you support partial birth abortion bans in the state, or should it be an all or nothing situation?

Bachmann: “I think that’s referring to late term abortion and I think that’s something that most people find anathema and they would prefer to see it outlawed. That’s a state issue. So it’s up to the people of Iowa to decide what they want to do (emphasis added). I only know for myself, and as President of the United States I am 100% percent pro-life from conception to natural death and I will stand up for the unborn.”

TheIowaRepublican.com: Does that mean you would take incremental steps or would you only support personhood-type legislation?

Answer: “It would depend what the legislation is that comes before me. Sometimes there are steps that you take to get to the point that you want to be. It just depends on what the legislation is that comes before.”

Weeks later, despite video evidence, Bachmann claimed she never called late term abortion a state issue. “I don’t think that I ever said that…. I don’t recall that, and I don’t recall being asked that,” Bachmann said during an interview with CaffeinatedThoughts.com.

On Tuesday, Bachmann launched her day of campaigning in Iowa with a media availability in Council Bluffs. The reason late term abortion became such a heated issue in Iowa is because notorious late term abortionist Leroy Carhart announced plans to open a clinic in Council Bluffs. Republican legislators were blocked in their attempts to ban late term abortions in Iowa. It was one of the most hotly debated topics of the 2011 session.

As Bachmann read from a prepared statement on Tuesday, she claimed, “There are no YouTube videos out there of me standing for anything other than life.” The Minnesota congresswoman is incorrect. There is a YouTube video of Bachmann’s October statements, calling late term abortion “a state issue”. It has been viewed more than 45,000 times.

So, TheIowaRepublican.com asked Congresswoman Bachmann to clarify her stance. She failed to do so. Here is that exchange:

TheIowaRepublican.com: Congresswoman, you said there’s no YouTube video of you out there standing for anything other than life. There was an event in Des Moines a couple of months ago where you had several faith leaders standing behind you and you were asked about the attempt to get late term abortion banned here in Iowa. And you said, “I believe that is a states’ rights issue.” Do you stand behind that statement?

Michele Bachmann: Well, I’m against partial birth abortion and I am against late term abortions. I always have been. And the states will be making that decision. I have to see the clip before I can comment on it.

TheIowaRepublican.com: So, do you believe it’s a states’ issue or not?

Michele Bachmann: Well, I am 100% pro-life from conception to natural death and always have been.

Bachmann never answered the question. If she is 100% pro-life, then she is against all abortions and should want them all banned. Bachmann signed the Personhood USA pledge, which includes this passage: “If elected President, I will work to advance state and federal laws and amendments that recognize the unalienable right to life of all human beings as persons at every stage of development.”

However, that is not the stance Michele Bachmann has taken publicly when asked about late term abortion. She says, “That’s a state issue”. Then denies she said that. Then says she would have “see the clip” before she can comment on it. Then Bachmann dodges a question on whether late term abortion is a states’ issue or not.

For someone who is making her stance on life a centerpiece of her campaign, Michele Bachmann is beginning to sound as confusing as Herman Cain on the issue. One week before the caucus, Iowans deserve to know where Michele Bachmann stands on late term abortion.

Photo by Dave Davidson – Prezography.com

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About the Author

Kevin Hall
Kevin Hall brings almost two decades of journalistic experience to TheIowaRepublican. Starting in college as a radio broadcaster, Hall eventually became a television anchor/reporter for stations in North Carolina, Missouri, and Iowa. During the 2007 caucus cycle, Hall changed careers and joined the political realm. He was the northwest Iowa field director for Fred Thompson's presidential campaign. Hall helped Terry Branstad return to the governor's office by organizing southwest Iowa for Branstad's 2010 campaign. Hall serves as a reporter/columnist for TheIowaRepublican.com.

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