Wesley Clark Backs Abortion Until Birth, Won’t Pick Pro-Life Judges

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jan 8, 2004   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Wesley Clark Backs Abortion Until Birth, Won’t Pick Pro-Life Judges

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
January 8, 2004

Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — In an interview with the Manchester Union Leader newspaper on Tuesday, Wesley Clark finally divulged his extreme pro-abortion views. Clark said he would never appoint pro-life judges and that he supported keeping abortion legal until the day of birth.

Clark told the New Hampshire newspaper that he would never appoint a pro-life judge to any federal court because the appointee wouldn’t be able to follow the precedent of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion on demand.

Clark flashed his extreme pro-abortion credentials by saying that, "until the moment of birth, the government has no right to influence a mother’s decision on whether to have an abortion," the paper reported.

"Life begins with the mother’s decision," Clark said.

Clark told the Union Leader that he would discern a potential judicial candidate’s position on abortion not with a litmus test, but by sifting through previous cases and legal decisions.

"I don’t believe people whose ideological agenda is to burn the law or remake the law or reshape it should be appointed whether they are from either side," Clark said during an interview with editors and reporters from the paper.

The comments are upsetting to many who are pro-life, and Wendy Wright of Concerned Women for America said Clark was "catering to the extreme edge to win the Democratic primary."

"Clark goes beyond Roe v Wade. There is no medical or legal precedence for saying life doesn’t begin until a woman decides. It would be difficult for him to find people that extreme to fill all the judicial slots," Wright told LifeNews.com.

When the newspaper asked Clark if he would appoint someone who passed all of Clark’s criteria, but was pro-life, Clark said, "I don’t know. It would depend. I don’t have litmus tests. I want a guy who will do judicial precedent."

Following the interview with the newspaper, Clark called the Union Leader to clarify his position.

"I’m not going to be appointing judges who are pro-life," he said.

When the newspaper asked him if that meant he would use a litmus test, Clark replied, "You just work through what the judge has done and if you find guys who follow judicial and established precedent, you’re not going to find a judge who is pro-life."

"Is Clark not aware that liberal court decisions on abortion, and the recent Supreme Court decision on the Texas sodomy law, overturned precedents," Wright wondered.

Though he already indicated he thought life begins at birth, Clark also told the New Hampshire paper, "I’m not going to get into a discussion of when life begins. I’m in favor of choice, period. Pure and simple.

"I don’t think you should get the law involved in abortion," Clark concluded. "It’s between a woman, her doctor, her faith and her family and her conscience. You don’t put the law in there."

Wright said Clark’s comments come across as discriminatory.

"Clark has exposed how unknowledgeable he is on abortion and legal issues. His prejudice against two entire classes of people, compassionate, intelligent people in all walks of life — pro-lifers, who are now the majority of Americans, and unborn babies — would render him incapable of making rational decisions," Wright said.