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. jebbo

    romney is no different than Akin. the republican war against women continues

    August 21, 2012 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  2. jland

    The democrats (and popular media) are master magicians they use misdirection to focus your attention away from the real issues. Abortion and gay marriage are important subjects but they get 10 times for coverage that the economy and the pillaging of other personal freedoms that are going on in this country. If the Dems got into debates on those issues they lose every time.

    August 21, 2012 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  3. Mary

    So, that is their main agenda, not jobs, middle class or education. It is to cut women's rights. I cannot understand how women vote for GOP. They don;t know the difference between God and religion. God is between the individual and his moral dilemma where as religion is man made and a lot of times, does not follow the principles of the religion it was founded on. Take Ryan for example who seems to follow "Ayn Rand" and calls himself a Christian.

    August 21, 2012 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  4. cashmeremafia

    Looks like the only difference between the Taliban and the GOP is the punishment: death vs. prison

    August 21, 2012 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  5. Alienated1

    Well, that killed off any chance of my vote going to either party.

    August 21, 2012 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  6. OregonTom

    Am I mistaken or has SCOTUS already ruled in favor of a womens right to have an abortion?

    August 21, 2012 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  7. Norm

    A position Mitt now fully embraces because he's been advised to do so. Have to admire his flexibility! Get the religious right foaming at the mouth in time for the convention. Don't forget to wave those flags as hard as you can.

    August 21, 2012 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  8. Rob- Texas

    Why can't we comment on LZ's article today? Oh yeah, I forgot, this is GNN.
    Everyone does not believe that abortion is a valid form of birth control. If you are not raped, or a victim of incest, and you just decided to risk it. You created a baby deal with it and give the baby a good home.

    August 21, 2012 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  9. Margi

    Why not provide universal prenatal care and universal child health care if GOP wants all conceived children to be born? How about paid parental work leaves of absence? Oh, wait, I think I've confused the USA with Sweden. OOPS!!!

    August 21, 2012 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  10. Ralph in Orange Park, FL

    Ironic, considering that their economic platform is an abortion.

    August 21, 2012 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  11. Romney/Rape 2012: Legitimate rape is good

    Let's go down the rabbit hole.

    August 21, 2012 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  12. What's new?

    We all saw what happened in the Dominican Republic with that poor girl (and the foetus) dying because of extremist right wing laws. Please not in the USA! Keep Romney/Ryan out of the WHite House.

    August 21, 2012 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  13. Nix the Food Stamp President

    I as most Americans in polls would rather be on the GOP side of life. Obama favored infanticide while in the Illinois legislature which is so barbaric it’s beyond comprehension. Of course a lot of these same people that favor that kind child mutilation are aghast at killing animals for food.

    August 21, 2012 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  14. Annie, Atlanta

    No surprise here for anyone paying attention since the GOP took over in January 2011. They campaigned on jobs and have been atttacking women's health issues ever since. When are we women going to wake up to the all-out full frontal attack on us, as if we need to be kept in our places. i, for one, have had enough. This "neanderthal" behavior has got to stop, and it's only us ladies who can stop it.

    August 21, 2012 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  15. Governor 47th In Job Creation (Excluding Off-shored to China and India)

    Robert

    Why is this an issue? Let's concentrate on the economy and jobs. Let's not let Obama off the hook.
    -------------------------------------------
    I'll tell you why this is an issue. Because lots of people are sick of the GOP "platform" that always comes in under the guise of jobs jobs jobs (see 2010) and once they get back in power (which is all they ever really want) they immediately launch a full out assault on forcing big govt down our collective throats by way of social issue after social issue.
    If they concentrated on people that have already been born and worked with the President to get more jobs then we'd all be better off. Instead they want to constantly legislate about women's bodies and censure female politicians for saying vagina. People are tired of the GOTP becoming the western branch of the Taliban. Until they stop that nonsense it will be an issue.

    August 21, 2012 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  16. Annie Stevens

    They preach less government... except when it means interfering in our personal choices, then more government is just fine. What they really mean is less government when it comes to regulating banking, corporate America, etc. and more government to regulate our personal freedoms.

    August 21, 2012 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  17. Whome

    This is why I believe it's all a game the republicans no more what to win the White Hose than I do so they do something like this to sink their own run for the persistency. That way both parties can sit around do nothing and blame each other.

    August 21, 2012 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  18. pkrbkr

    If Jesus were to walk the Earth today he'd be appalled at the antics of the Republican party.....pro-life BUT not willing to help those in need. The Rs are intolerant of anyone whose lifestyle and/or beliefs don't fit their mold. shameful and biased. Whatever happened to "love thy neighbor" and "the measure by which you judge others will be the measure bby which YOU are judged." The hypocrisy is amazing and soooooooo disturbing and disgusting!

    August 21, 2012 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  19. Becky

    Is it just me or is it weird that the same people who believe in the sanctity of life also believe in the right for people to carry assault riffles and the death penalty?

    August 21, 2012 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  20. Steve

    Republicans, the other big government party that wants to push government intrusion into our lives to an all time high. I hope this a wake up call to democrats who notoriously poor about showing up at the voting booth. Or better yet, vote for Gary Johnson and the libertarian ticket, vote for your freedom.

    August 21, 2012 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  21. Collin

    Pro-life until you are born – then you are on your own. At least you know you will always be good enough to be cannon fodder for an oil war.

    August 21, 2012 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  22. A Southern Lady - North Carolina

    Republicans - this is 2012 not 1912. What has happened to the once-proud Republican Party?

    August 21, 2012 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  23. Mary

    Collin

    Pro-life until you are born – then you are on your own. At least you know you will always be good enough to be cannon fodder for an oil war.
    ------
    Scary how the mind (logic) of the GOP works.

    August 21, 2012 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  24. Sniffit

    "I as most Americans in polls would rather be on the GOP side of life. Obama favored infanticide while in the Illinois legislature which is so barbaric it’s beyond comprehension. Of course a lot of these same people that favor that kind child mutilation are aghast at killing animals for food."

    HAR HAR HAR YEAH! All liberals are crunchy vegans with dreadlocks running naked around the woods hugging trees and humping gopher holes while complaining about racism and throwing abortion parties at the bonfire!!! Laddy dahddy dah....life is so simple once you reduce everything to the level of cartoon dichotomies!!!

    PSSSST: Polling proves you wrong.

    August 21, 2012 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  25. The Film Professor

    I guess the GOP will be satisfied with getting 36-39% of the vote in November, because that's all they are going to get by including this plank in the platform.

    August 21, 2012 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
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