Romney Says Bush Flip-Flopped On Abortion Too

Romney Says Bush Flip-Flopped On Abortion Too


But he was wrong. Uhh…woops.

From Politico:

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney said this week that President Bush “was pro-choice before he became pro-life,â€Â? an assertion the Romney campaign now acknowledges was inaccurate. The remark was based on a magazine article Romney had read, his campaign said.[…]

Question: “Bloggers like to call it ‘flip flopping,’ the way you’ve changed your views on issues like abortion over the years. I’ve heard the story about stem cell research that caused you to change your mind on abortion and come to your current position. But will conservatives here buy that? Doesn’t that give off the impression that you’ll do whatever it takes to win?â€Â?

Romney: “Ronald Reagan was pro-choice, and became pro-life. I understand that George W. Bush was pro-choice before he came pro-life. Zell Miller was pro-choice before pro-life. And I was effectively pro-choice before I became pro-life. I don’t think anyone questions the commitment on the part of those other gentlemen for pro-life principles. And, in my case, you don’t have to take my word for it. You can look at my record as governor, because I made the move to pro-life some time ago. I’ve been governor. I’ve had several bills that came to my desk that raised the question of abortion or life, and I came down on the side of respecting the sanctity of human life every time.â€Â?

If there’s one thing I’ve found that Republicans loathe is a politician who comes off as disingenuous and slick. As of right now, Romney leads the pack in both the categories. Because there’s nothing more disingenuous and slick than explaining a switch in your position by comparing it to other prominent politicians who switched. That’s incredibly bad form and Romney should know better.

I mean, it’s way too earlier to ask this question but I’ll do it anyway: is Mitt done before he’s even started?

What could be interesting is, in the end, abortion may not be as big an issue in the primaries because Republicans know that they’re going to have to pick a candidate who can pull in the independents who left the right and swung the 2006 elections. That puts Giuliani and McCain in a pretty good position, although I think it’s better for Giuliani’s chances ultimately. Romney’s still in a pickle here, because if there’s one thing independents loathe…it’s a politican who comes off as disingenuous and slick.

Romney, you listening? You better because I don’t think there’s much time left before you’re defined as the Republican John Kerry.

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  • bob in fl

    Open mouth. Insert foot. “OOPS! I forgot to engage brain first.”

    Sounds like both Romney & Biden have the same problem. Well, that is one way to narrow the field. Thanks, guys.

  • http://none sid davisson

    As a God fearing American, I’m pro-God and pro-choice because I live in America. God isn’t pro-life and never has been.He isn’t pro-death either.>>Romney’s anti-labor stance is even more puzzling.In the Midwest and the rest of the rust belt,he’s called Shit Romney,really.

  • Ben

    One could just as easily argue that you’re being disingenuous and slick in claiming that this is how he’s explained a switch in his position.

    He’s has elaborated at length on how his position has evolved. It’s been reported on numerous times. After explaining himself many times I don’t think it’s disingenous to finally point out that this is nothing new and remind reporters of others who have made similar changes in their platform.

    That’s not to say that I think Romney is leading the pack or that there won’t be any republicans who think he’s disingenous. I just think it’s disingenous to claim that his response was an explanation for a change in position.

    Look at the preceding question. It wasn’t asking why he changed. It basically said, I’ve already heard your explanation. Will republicans buy that or will they consider it flipflopping?

    Answering by referring to other republicans who have changed their positions is just about the only legitimate way to respond. How else can you claim to have any idea how republicans might respond unless you point to how they’ve responded in the past?

    If the question is, in essence, “will they buy it?” responding with, in essence, “they bought it before” and then pointing to specific times when they DID buy it before is the best and most genuine response a person could give.

  • Yorktownguy

    Hi folks!
    Now let’s place our thinking caps on straight…
    Mitt Romney WAS elected Gubernator of Massachusetts as a Republican right?
    In a very liberal leaning state correct?
    Woud it be fair to say that the majority elected him
    having the insight that he represented their views as a RINO?
    Methinks his flipflopping or sidestepping as some might call it,
    portends trouble for any right leaning potential voter in 2008.
    Personally I wouldn’t trust him as far as he could toss an Obama.

  • Bob

    Over the last 6 years the U.S. government has added about 55 trillion dollars of unfunded liability to our nation, but only admits to a national debt of 9 Trillion +. The destruction to our future generations is staggering! But we occupy our time and waste our discussion on did some one change their minds about abortion. Mr Romney is the only candidate in the field who has any experience or idea of what to do with the financial mess we have created for our children and the future of Americe. I am stunned and ashamed of how irresponsible as a nation we are. If we don’t get this financial mess fixed, we won”t have a nation left to worry about abortion!

  • Justin Gardner

    I don’t know Ben. I mean, maybe it’s just me, but I don’t think it’s very genuine to defend yourself by pointing to other people who have changed their minds. I see your point, but I just don’t agree.

  • WirelessMike

    I’m unconvinced that this is comparable to Kerry’s “flip-flopping” a few years ago. Being a christian independent centrist isn’t easy and I, too, must often change my mind on an issue after being confronted with a new, fresh perspective. We all do. What’s important, I think, in defining whether or not this is political “flip-flopping” is the politician’s voting record.

    Romney successfully defended himself against any possible accusation of “flip-flopping” by bringing up this very point.

    I agree with you, though, that bringing up others who have made this sort of change is a very poor excuse. That being said– Changing your mind on an issue and sticking by your new stance with your own principles and voting record is very different from going back and forth on the issue over the course of your political career, however short or long that may be. Are we going to grade candidates who changed their party loyalties in this same manner? After all– That’s typically a one-time change, as well.

    I think what many here consider flip-flopping and what I consider flip-flopping are very different things. I think you have to both “flip” AND “flop” in order to be a “flip-flopper.” Just changing your stance once doesn’t make you anything worse than a typical intellectual who can be accused only of being less than stubborn on an issue. GWB is extremely stubborn about his stances… Is this really preferable to most Americans?