NRL News

Romney reiterates once again that he wants Roe v. Wade overturned

by | Oct 16, 2012

By Dave Andrusko

“Overturning Roe v. Wade is part of Romney’s agenda. The next president could nominate enough Supreme Court justices to determine the future of Roe. And Romney has said, ‘I hope to appoint justices for the Supreme Court that will follow the law and the constitution. And it would be my preference that they reverse Roe v. Wade…’”
             —  NARAL President Nancy Keenan, writing Monday at Huffington

Pro-Life Mitt Romney

Back in July I wrote the following: “There is a built-in problem with rebutting in detail even the most blatantly spurious/misleading/false accusations lodged against pro-life former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney: inevitably you give additional oxygen to a fire that will eventually extinguish itself.”

Which is why we didn’t write about the kerfuffle when pro-life Mitt gave an interview to the editorial board of the Des Moines Register. If there was a lack of clarity, Mr. Romney would straightened it out  and he did this week in an interview with the editorial board of the Columbus [Ohio] Dispatch.  Based on the shorthand summary the paper gave of the interview, Mr. Romney made several important points.

#1. Referring to the meeting with the editorial board of the Des Moines Register, Romney said, “I was asked a simple question – do you have a piece of legislation on this [abortion], and the answer is no, I don’t have a piece of legislation on this.” He added, “What I do have is an executive order which I will put in place on Day 1, to see that the Mexico City policy is put back in place.” On his fourth day in office, Obama issued an executive order to rescind the pro-life Mexico City Policy which had been enforced by Republican presidents going back to Ronald Reagan. The effect of Obama’s order was to open the door to hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. funding to private organizations that perform and promote abortion overseas.

#2. “I will not fund Planned Parenthood through federal funding,” Romney told the Dispatch. Planned Parenthood, reliably demagogic, has turned that statement (which he has made many times) into the bogus claim the Romney wanted to run them out of business. No, he wants to end federal funding of PPFA which performed 329,445 abortions in 2010, according to its most recent annual report.  That’s more than a quarter of the 1.2 million abortions performed in the United States every year, easily making them the nation’s largest abortion chain. Planned Parenthood takes in more than a billion dollars a year in revenues, making them a rich and powerful corporation.  And a whopping 46% of that money–$487.4 million–is in “Government Health Services Grants and Reimbursements.”

#3. On Roe v. Wade. Here’s how  the Dispatch framed his response. “He conceded that the country is not ready to amend the Constitution to repeal the 1973 Roe vs. Wade ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court, so he would not push for such a change.” Then the newspaper quoted Romney directly.

“That’s not where America is now,” he said. “I would love us to be in a situation where the American people decide let’s not have abortion. But that’s not where we are. That’s why I think the most effective next step is to have the court return the decision.”

Romney also said, “And it is my preference that would return to the states and to the people and their elected representatives the issue of abortion–as opposed to having the federal government impose, the Supreme Court impose its view on a one-vote majority. But that’s something that will be up to the court. That’s not something I can decide as president, that’s something which the court would have to decide.”

This also wasn’t new. Mr. Romney made precisely the same point last month on “Meet the Press,” where he said

“And it would be my preference that they [the Supreme Court] reverse Roe v. Wade and therefore they return to the people and their elected representatives the decisions with regards to this important issue. And I hope to appoint justices for the Supreme Court that will follow the law and the constitution.” (See

Indeed. The Court gave us Roe v. Wade and short of the highly unlikely possibility of passing a constitutional amendment, it will be the Supreme Court that overturns Roe v. Wade. Which is why NARAL’s Nancy Keenan is so nervous: it is likely the next President will appoint at a minimum two Supreme Court justices.

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Categories: Mitt Romney