First on CNN: GOP prepares tough anti-abortion platform
August 20th, 2012
10:41 PM ET
2 years ago

First on CNN: GOP prepares tough anti-abortion platform

Tampa, Florida (CNN) - The Republican Party is once again set to enshrine into its official platform support for "a human life amendment" to the Constitution that would outlaw abortion without making explicit exemptions for rape or incest, according to draft language of the platform obtained exclusively by CNN late Monday.

"Faithful to the 'self-evident' truths enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, we assert the sanctity of human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed," the draft platform declares. "We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment's protections apply to unborn children."

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The party will reaffirm its opposition to federally-funded embryonic stem cell research and demand that the government "not fund or subsidize health care which includes abortion coverage."

Republicans have also inserted a "salute" to states pushing "informed consent" laws - an apparent reference to ultrasound bills that have moved through some state legislatures - "mandatory waiting periods prior to an abortion, and health-protective clinic regulation."

The document, crafted Monday in a subcommittee meeting of the Republican Party's official platform committee in Tampa, is being closely guarded by party officials but was provided to CNN by a Republican source here.

The source cautioned that the statement of principle is still in draft form and must be approved by the full platform committee on Tuesday and by delegates to the Republican National Convention next week.

The GOP's abortion plank faces scrutiny every four years, and this year's document contains language similar to the platforms that were adopted by the party at their conventions in 2000, 2004 and 2008.

But the abortion issue has been thrust into the center of the presidential campaign as this year's convention approaches, thanks to comments from Missouri Rep. Todd Akin, a U.S. Senate candidate, about abortion and "legitimate rape."

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and his running mate Paul Ryan sharply condemned Akin's remarks and pledged that under a Romney administration, abortion would be allowed in the case of rape.

An exemption for rape, though, is not included in the platform set to be adopted by the party Romney will officially lead when he accepts the Republican nomination next week.

And Ryan, his vice presidential pick, has opposed exceptions for rape and voted alongside Akin in the House, though Ryan now says he defers to Romney's position on the matter.

Debate over the abortion plank flared four years ago when John McCain, the Republican presidential nominee at the time, said he wanted to add language to the platform to recognize exceptions for rape, incest and the life of the mother.

That prompted angry finger-wagging from top social conservatives.

Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council, chided McCain and said it would be "political suicide" for him to add language about exceptions for rape or incest in the abortion platform.


Filed under: 2012 • Abortion • Republican National Convention • Republicans
soundoff (401 Responses)
  1. Sorensen

    They are very sick people bringing the US back to the stone age and provoking ridicule from all civilized countries.
    Well done, GOP. Ryan/Akin!!!

    August 21, 2012 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  2. v_mag

    We can see where the Repugs are taking this debate. First, it was "life begins at conception, but we make an abortion exception for rape, incest, and the life of the mother". Then, it's "no exceptions". Next, someone will notice that sperms wiggle and are therefore alive, meaning that all those adolescent boys fiddling with themselves are baby killers and should be immediately executed. And if a woman has a period, she's guilty too!

    August 21, 2012 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  3. GregJackson

    OK – Let's try to put this into terms you can all understand. To some of the Hindu faith, cows are Sacred, every bit as Sacred as the Christian right believes a fertilized egg/zygote/fetus/unborn child. That is their belief. They do not eat beef, because to them, that is murder. So, should we outlaw hamburgers because one religious group in this plural society believes killing cows is murder? After all, their bible tells them so, too.

    If you don't want to eat beef, no problem. Don't eat it. If you think abortion is murder, don't have one. But don't legislate your religious belief on those who don't believe it.

    August 21, 2012 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  4. skeptic001

    Wake up GOP! You will lose. As an Independent in the 1%, I will either pay with my money, or with my civil liberties, and an increase in my taxes is a smaller price to pay. This country was founded on freedom of religion, as well as freedom FROM it. And by the way, why is a life sacred in the womb, but once it comes out, it's on it's own? When there are no more forsaken and unwanted children abused and in foster care, then we'll talk. Why don't you help them instead of protecting the unborn and yet to be conceived?

    August 21, 2012 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  5. Rosslaw

    Republicans have become the party of American sharia law right up to the state mandated requirement that women submit to aggravated rape with an object prior to an abortion in the form of an ultrasound "for their own good". Start trying on those burquas ladies.

    August 21, 2012 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  6. GI Joe

    They won't get my support.

    The want the extra people born so they can have cheap labor and lots of people for their wars they intend to start (to take over the entire world).

    Impossible? Read the "White Horse Prophesy" of the Mormons. It's been their plan for decades.

    August 21, 2012 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  7. GI Joe

    The Ryan/Akin bill on "personhood" of 2009 is the best start for the Mormon's plan. That's why he was chosen.

    August 21, 2012 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  8. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Our domestic Taliban party, the GOP, marches into the 1800s.

    August 21, 2012 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  9. Paul

    GOP = beyond crazy nowadays.

    August 21, 2012 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  10. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Will the GOP platform also include legitimate armed robbery, legitimate car jacking, and legitimate tax evasion?

    August 21, 2012 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  11. J

    Fools. These people are all TRUE moronic idiotic fools. Dumbest of the dumb-lowest of the low. It's pathetic that this is the dialogue we are having in 1912-let alone 2012. What a joke. (Except it's really not funny)...

    August 21, 2012 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  12. rbj

    Can anyone tell me where the republican platform differs from the garbage that AKIN was spouting...his science is truly flawed but the result is the same.

    August 21, 2012 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  13. mike the electrician

    Umm, I think that Rep. Akins already set out your anit-abortion platform. Actually I am sure it was suppose to be under wraps until after the election, but this moron let it slip. I t sure is ironic that the GOP want's government out of our lives and out of the way for business, but wants to dictate to women the choices they can make, especially if raped, incest, or health of the mother. Now Ryan's bills with Akins will get extra scrutiny. Vote the GOP out of office!!!

    August 21, 2012 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  14. Pete

    It's going to be the righteous bible toting republicans their undoing .Even this Romney,Ryan duo say abortion shouldn't be used even in events of rape or incest,just if a woman's life is in danger so this republican rep Akin just fits in right but just shouldn't have been heard publicly.Voters know the extremist republicans views but really don't rail against them until maybe now,they're sick and tired of the same old line that religion even in a politicians hands can or should be used,it should be seperation of church and state and religion doesn't have a place in politics ,plain and simple...And women nationwide are getting sick of being used as political pawns just for a vote,they're smarter than that and want some respect especially from the righteous righties,they're just not tools for procreation and ignorent republicans better get to know it!!!

    August 21, 2012 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  15. Andy NYC

    If this doesn't fire up support for the Democrats, I don't know what will.
    These folks want limited government except when it comes to personal decisions involving a woman's right to choose and her options for medical care.
    Wack jobs all of them.

    August 21, 2012 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  16. joe

    Why do they need an anti-abortion plank? I thought women could just shut their bodies down when they had unwanted pregnancies?

    August 21, 2012 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  17. Namejkane fl SEND THE THREE TIME LOSER romney HOME AND MAKE IT FOUR.

    These republican teaparty extremest have no place in gov ,romney and Ann the tax cheats and Ryan the anti woman's rights religious freak have no chance in Nov ,Gop hot dog clown car wreck in Nov .romney and ryans mothers should have gotten abortions!!!!!

    August 21, 2012 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  18. They'reallthesame

    This is where the GOP keeps landing in so many elections. They have no solutions to the country's BIG problems, so they play the morality card. Like they can play it well...

    August 21, 2012 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  19. Desmond, a Canadian

    "The mistake I made was in the words I said, not in the heart I hold. I ask for your forgiveness." Akin. This person is really a well meaning. What he did to spark such outrage among his fellow GOPERs was to shine a powerful strobe light on their much less well meaning hearts. His words actually revealed a truth about them that they would never want broadcast.

    August 21, 2012 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  20. Agapatos

    Of course! Because life is ESSENTIAL to a child, whereas who it's mother (or father) happens to be, or how much money they have, or how they feel about the situation, are all NON-essential.

    August 21, 2012 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  21. Chumlee

    What a freak show! These old men and women, who think they should make decisions regarding the bodys of others
    are too old to reproduce, and probably too old to enjoy a good roll in the sack.

    But they continue to dictate what they think Americans should do. How to change this: DEFEAT THESE LOSERS ON ELECTION DAY. VOTE THEM OUT OF OFFICE, OR LOSE YOUR RIGHTS

    August 21, 2012 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  22. Changing His Tune

    Oh, so now that Ryan is testing the way the wind blows he's not so Catholic anymore with his pro abortion position. You are either fully Pro or fully Con when it comes to abortion. There can be no exceptions when it comes to the life of the unborn.

    August 21, 2012 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  23. Bill

    How pathetic. They always go back to these issues and they are losers, except for the base. Whatever happened to job, jobs, jobs? I can not wait until November.

    August 21, 2012 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  24. Agapatos

    . . . disagree with my last post, and you implicitly suggest that "Might [of the parents and doctor, because they CAN take the child's life] makes right."

    August 21, 2012 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  25. harvey 60

    If they're going to extend legal protection to the unborn, why not extend them to the deceased also? Maybe they'll cook up a plan to have the unborn children and deceased family members of Republicans vote in elections. Think of it: pregnant Republican women get to cast two votes, one for themselves and one for their unborn child.

    August 21, 2012 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
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