August 21st, 2012
11:51 AM ET
2 years ago

GOP platform committee approves tough anti-abortion stance

Tampa, Florida (CNN) – Republicans drafting their party's official policy platform on Tuesday ratified a call for a Constitutional ban on abortion that makes no exceptions for rape or incest.

The vote to endorse the party's long-standing opposition to abortion and support for a "human life amendment" took place at a meeting of the GOP's official platform committee in Tampa, the site of next week's Republican National Convention.

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The party's official stance on abortion was approved after just a few minutes of discussion. The language in the platform must be voted on before the full Republican Convention next week, though Republicans say it is all but certain to pass.

"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 platform language 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."

Platform committee chairman Gov. Bob McDonnell of Virginia thanked the 110-member committee for "affirming our respect for human life" and quickly moved on to other topics as top advisers to Mitt Romney's Republican presidential campaign looked on from the back of the room.

Because the language about a Constitutional abortion ban is similar to language in past Republican platforms, the vote might normally have escaped notice.

But the debate over abortion - and exceptions for rape victims - was thrust into the national political spotlight on Sunday in the wake of Missouri Rep. Todd Akin's comments about "legitimate rape."

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.

Republican officials said the language in the platform was "100% pro-life" but stressed that the document has to remain vague and avoid specific language about abortion exceptions because different states have varying abortion regulations.

In the abortion and "sanctity of life" platform, Republicans also outlined its opposition to federally-funded embryonic stem cell research and demanded that the government "not fund or subsidize health care which includes abortion coverage."

Additionally, the party 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."

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Filed under: 2012 • Abortion • Florida • Mitt Romney • RNC
soundoff (343 Responses)
  1. ghostriter

    So much for the conservatives on here saying that democrats were making this up.

    How conservatives can continue to actually defend these guys defies logic. Coincidentally, defining logic is a pre-requisite to be a conservative.

    August 21, 2012 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  2. denver

    Still waiting on the GOP's amendment banning capital punishment...

    August 21, 2012 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  3. Ferret out the B.S.

    It is clearly evident that the GOP wants to return this country to the 1950's and earlier or better yet mirror the ultra consevative views and activities of the Taliban along with other religeous groups. The apparent desire is to turn the US into a theologic society where we are forced to believe, live and act by conservative religeous doctrine determined by a group claiming to create freedom but are working their hardest to take it away. Repudiate this move to restrict our hard earned freedoms by voting all of these fanatics out of office.

    August 21, 2012 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  4. fixedanddilated

    One more reason why changing GOP affiliation is looking more attractive all the time. Trouble is I'm just too old and stubborn to abdicate the party to these brainless extremists. Guess it will be another election year of cross-voting. Sigh.

    August 21, 2012 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  5. Obama/Biden - We Wanna Put Government Chains on Y'ALL

    Did anybody happen to notice that Obama and Biden haven't been able to get this country back to work in 4 years and have run up massive debt in the process and all while creating a huge new government entitlement program and bringing the country to the verge of bankruptcy? Oh yeah, I guess that isn't very important.....

    And the liberal MSM helps Obama/Biden distract fron their record of failure with less important trivia, while the country suffers and collapses.

    August 21, 2012 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  6. California Gary

    nothing new here.......you'll need to make that self-abort retroactive.

    August 21, 2012 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  7. derp

    Abortion, then contraception, then voting then, property rights.

    Go ahead ladies vote Republican.

    When you find yourself in the kitchen, barefoot, pregnant and with no voting or property rights, don't blame a liberal.

    You think they'll stop at abortion?

    August 21, 2012 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  8. Marshall

    I don't have a dog in the abortion battle, but listen up women listen up! I find it difficult to imagine that many of you will vote Republican if there are no exceptions for abortion in cases of rape and incest.

    August 21, 2012 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  9. derp

    Abor tion, then contra ception, then voting then, property rights.

    Go ahead ladies vote Republican.

    When you find yourself in the kitchen, barefoot, pregnant and with no voting or property rights, don't blame a liberal.

    You really think they'll stop at abor tion?

    August 21, 2012 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  10. Maarten

    Seems to me that the GOP is letting Christianity form the basis of its platform. They seem to want to remove the separation between church and state, and slowly move towards a Christian Theocracy of some sorts. Back in the 60ies, women went to Mexico to get an abortion, some times under undesirable medical conditions (hygiene, etc). Do we really want to go back to that? Should this not be a personal choice, not a choice decided for us by the government?

    August 21, 2012 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  11. Dave Jaipersaud

    Now Romney and Paul Ryan are condemned what Akin's said that rape can be legitimate. They both supported legislation that ban abortion that made no exception to what Akin called “LEGITIMATE RAPE”. In fact Ryan co-sponsored a bill with Akin to ban all such “LEGITIMATE RAPE” abortions. And now they want us to believe they will make an exception. How stupid do they think we are? How can you ever thrust these hypocrites.

    People wake up. It is not just Akin that thinks some rapes are legitimate. Past legislative actions of Ryan, Romney and pretty much most of the Republican politicians supports Akin’s remarks. To prove this point, no exemption for rape is included in the Republican Party’s platform set to be adopted by the party Romney will officially lead when he accepts the Republican nomination next week.

    So my fellow humans, in America we have one party that believes certain types of rape is legitimate and the victim should have no reprieve if that get pregnant and that government should dictate to the victims what they can do to their bodies, while the other party believes that all forms of rape is illegal, morally wrong, and the victim should have a reprieve if that get pregnant and that government should not dictate to the victims what they can do to their bodies.

    You have a choice people.

    August 21, 2012 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  12. Laura

    I'm disgusted by what I just read.

    August 21, 2012 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  13. Izza Rollin

    So much respect for the unborn and so little for those of us that are already here. A merging of corporatacracy and iidocracy.

    August 21, 2012 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  14. Pat

    Good helps this country if the Republicans win this election . Our society will be negatively impacted for many years to come!

    August 21, 2012 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  15. Darlene

    They are just trying to skirt around Roe vs Wade.

    August 21, 2012 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  16. Jim Doyle

    They don't give a damn about fetuses. They want votes. My guess is they'll lose more than they gain.

    August 21, 2012 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  17. FlotsamJetsam

    The American public needs to understand that this whole Akin debacle is not an anomaly. Akin's comment about rape may have been out of line, but bottom line this plank will kill Romney. Choosing Ryan an ardent anti-abortionist who supports personhood, and denies abortions to those that would be the victims of rape or incest.

    August 21, 2012 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  18. Lindsey

    It would be really nice if the GOP could put their billions of dollars where their mouths are and show as much compassion for children they force to be born as they do feti still in anonymous uteruses.

    August 21, 2012 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  19. Frustrated Republican

    So frustrating that my party continues to focus on social issues. Let people live their lives how they wish.

    August 21, 2012 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  20. papanez

    The GOP has just supported a platform that states women should have no rights. They haven't said how they'd create one job in this country. The GOP has become a dangerous joke. Sane people shake their heads but these religious nut cases are out to turn this country into a religious state. We've all seen how well that works in the Middle East.
    Obama/Biden 2012

    August 21, 2012 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  21. Governor 47th In Job Creation (Excluding Off-shored to China and India)

    kendall

    Most pregnancies are not caused by rape can we all agree on that? So, most pregnancies come because the woman is stupid and irresponsible . So why should an unborn child pay for that stupidity and irresponsibility with its life. Some have suggested that the GOP will ruin a woman's life because they won't allow her an abortion. How about keep your legs closed.

    Foster? Is that you? You trying the whole aspirin thing again with a new twist? I see that you're now advocating for rapists rights, while that's noble of you, the rest of us will side with the victim, thanks. Bye now.

    August 21, 2012 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  22. MBane

    Can anyone here who is a Republican explain to me how their anti-abortion policies go hand in hand with their pro-war policies or even their pro-weapons views?

    August 21, 2012 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  23. ted

    The GOP has declared war on women's rights to make their own decisions regarding their health. Rape and incest are real and women are victims of them every single day by predators. To declare that abortions cannot be used in the case of rape and incest is wrong and the GOP has signed its death certificate with women, at least women that have not drunk the GOP koolaid and that will stand up for their rights.

    I as a man and Democrat urge all women to vote for Obama in November. You can be assured that he respects you and will not turn his back on your rights to manage your own health and he supports you. He has said rape is rape and incest is incest and both are wrong and any child conceived as a result of these crimes should be aborted.

    Obama/Biden 2012

    August 21, 2012 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  24. Obama/Biden - We Wanna Put Government Chains on Y'ALL

    Birth control is readiliy available in this country. The liberals even have the government paying for it, there are condom bowls in schools! There is simply NO REASON to get pregnant if you do not want to get pregnant. It IS that simple in 2012.

    As an adult of reproductive age, YOU are responsbile for your actions. ACT responsibly and PREVENT unwanted pregnancies. If you do not act responsibly and get pregnant then do NOT use abortion as your birth control. At that point, there is another human being involved and you should not have the right to kill them just because you acted irresponsibly or couldn't be inconvienced.

    Liberals and Democrats just want to maintain their culture of total irresponsibility, even to the point of killing others.

    August 21, 2012 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  25. hope

    And if the law were to state that a man that has fathered 4 child and supported none of them...he must get a vasectamy
    or maybe a law that says we will feed the poor and the hungry as so many of these children will become. Who is to
    say when life begins???? can a fetus live outside the womb...I think not. These righttolifers have all the health care and money they need..they do not see the others in this county.

    August 21, 2012 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
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