August 21st, 2012
11:51 AM ET
10 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 (341 Responses)
  1. jellylee2020

    Did they also approve pro-rape platform championed by Mr. Akin?

    August 21, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  2. Independent Voter

    Women will remember in November. Obama 2012! For sure! The only sane choice in this election.

    August 21, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  3. Jeff

    How is it anyone else business to dictate to a women what she can and cannot do to her body and a glob of multiplying cells. It is very hypocritical to proclaim to be in favor of small non-intrusive gov't and then take take this stance

    August 21, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  4. Oregon Calling

    Roe v Wade decided this a loooong time ago.

    Peace ~

    August 21, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  5. TommyGun

    anyone but that chimp back in offce.

    August 21, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  6. Cort

    Ah, your figure of 25 million unemployed is wrong. You're not allowed to count children in your calculation☺Nice try though
    Current population = 312,000,000 25,000,000 unemployed would equal 8% The real figure is half what you claim, but you are a right-winger and prone to gross exaggeration to buffer your case

    August 21, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  7. MrRickinNH

    Seems to me with the candidate not supporting the party platform on this issue... he will divide the party! And with Mr. Akin representing the extreme end and will not quit.... further dividing GOP supporters. We are looking at a failed campaign for the GOP this fall!

    August 21, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  8. macbil

    Akin's comments about rape and abortion are as unsupportable as the Republican's economic theories. They don't make sense are not good for this country.

    August 21, 2012 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  9. Doug in NYC

    This is the way I see it. Ban all abortions is the GOP platform, but lets keep assault rifles. You see, you have to think like a Republican here. All those babies will eventually need jobs, the nice very low paying ones the republicans want to create. The assualt weapons are a means of creating those jobs. Guessing the people that are killed using those weapons have jobs, those people will need to be replaced. Ergo, assult weapons = job creators and the Republican "Death Panel" Healthcare Plan!

    It's waped way of thinking, but the labotamy helped me see the Republican way!!

    August 21, 2012 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  10. John

    The war on women continues. It is not what the GOP says it is what they do. American people are not stupid.....

    August 21, 2012 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  11. Damich

    When will these repubs pull their heads out of their butts? You can still be Christian and believe that a FULL HUMAN BEING has far more rights then a tiny pin head sized globule of cells in a womans body. It's the church who is teaching false science claiming that a spec of cells is a soul and has equal rights. Since they shun science they don't know that there is a science technician somewhere growing a beating heart... growing a heat value.... soon to be growing ears and body parts that are not part of a human.... but its alive!.. its a bunch of cells like in a womans uterus?... SAME THING... are they going to protect those organs grown from a petri dish because it's alive?.... and not only that but then claim those organs have the rights of FULL GROWN HUMAN???? ABSURD! But you better bet they will turn right around someday and like in true hypocrite form have one of those petri dish hearts implanted in them some day when they need it wont they!!! I believe America is finally waking up to how retarded these Repubs are.... holding serious advancements in health and civic freedoms back from the world. ITS EVIL plain an simple. EVIL... Vote against evil and stupidity in November!

    August 21, 2012 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  12. Lord Flashheart

    Ah the party of "Bugger you Jack, I'm alright". Nice, aren't they?

    August 21, 2012 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  13. jerrylax

    Romney supports giving the states the right to determine the laws concerning abortion. Obama as always wants the centralized (collective) government to control the issue... again it comes down to are you a collectivist (Marxist) or an individualist... do you want a govt in every faction of your life...even beyond what it is today...then vote for obama and he will gladly control you and your family from cradle to grave.

    August 21, 2012 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |

    No freed person should be subject of someone else’s religious beliefs.
    And that includes stances on abortion!

    Abortion is another word for murder..
    Yet you do not condemn the millions or Iraqi you have mass-murdered in cold blood?
    ?Why don’t you ban murder also you hypocrites?

    Freedom of choice, good morals, self-responsibility
    And the rule of law
    Are King here in The Freed Republic of The Americas.
    Not religion.

    Fact, our freed republic is not to be subjugated by any one religion

    Our first amendment Freedom of Choice is at steak in the balance.

    ~Don’t Tread On Me~

    August 21, 2012 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |

    President Obama’s statement on the H.R. 3 No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act on 14 July 2010
    ~> clause by prohibiting federal funding for elective abortions and federal subsidies previously allowed by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) <~
    Thank the stars we have freedom of choice here in America because neither the republican nor democratic party supports abortion. They express it differently is all.

    August 21, 2012 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  16. Iamnotfooled

    Romney just flipped on them again. These Republicans are really CONFUSED and should not be trusted to run this country.

    August 21, 2012 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  17. 1CentFree

    I must say the GOP's timing is uncanny. What a more opportune time to strike another blow to Romney's presidential hopes. The GOP foot shooting is so hilarious it's unreal.

    August 21, 2012 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  18. Ex-GOP Con

    Does this cover the millions of half-lives snuffed out by a tissue paper on a daily basis? I've seen them under a microscope-those suckers can move!

    August 21, 2012 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  19. Hypocrites One and All

    Liberals = Take care of everyone from birth to death on the taxpayer's dime, but murder for convenience is A-OK
    Conservatives = Every life is sacred... until you're born, then you can die for all we care

    August 21, 2012 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  20. Iamnotfooled

    Mike Huckabee just said -Some exceptional people have been born out of rape. Is he advocating that rape is ok? That's even crazier. These guys are nuts!

    August 21, 2012 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  21. mige

    If the GOP wins this election set your watches back 3,000 years.

    August 21, 2012 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  22. Lip Service - nothing more

    Republicans need to accept (if they are the adults they claim to be), that they will not win this issue, period. Republicans have managed to divide the country by not accepting that they will NOT run this country with a bible in their hands. And as long as I can vote, they will not run the country either way.

    All the GOP is doing is pushing more and more voters away. I just don't get it.

    August 21, 2012 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  23. georgex

    Akin should know better than to publicly speak this out. Among his Republican cohorts they can say such nonsense, but not to the media. I am sure he has expressed this before. Most of the guys in the old boys get together knew this idea was a dirty joke, but Akin thought it true.
    For the Republicans to have someone so scientifically illiterate on the science and technology committee is scary.

    August 21, 2012 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  24. likethehunt

    i think that the gop will at sometime get row vs wade overturn what i would like to know the plans they have for the woman will be for going ahead and having a illeagle abortion
    as i see it she must be charge with murder with at least 20 years prison
    is this what th gop has planed for women
    its real easy to say abortion wrong but whats going to happen to women when it is illegal again

    August 21, 2012 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  25. Grand Oil Party 2012

    Republicans are "pro life", unless you can't afford healthcare. Then they're quite happy to let you die in the street. But we need to look at bigger issues like maintaining government handouts to big corporations. Corporations ... the GOP's favorite people.

    August 21, 2012 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
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