Florida Governor Candidate Charlie Crist Faces Questions on Abortion Stance
by Steven Ertelt
August 25, 2006
Tallahassee, FL (LifeNews.com) — Florida gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist is facing questions from Republicans considering whether to vote for him or rival Tom Gallagher in the GOP primary next month. Gallagher, who is considered the more pro-life of the two candidates, has pressed the issue so strongly that Crist backers are also questioning the candidate.
Gallagher has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in television ads that question Crist’s position on several issues, including abortion. The ads are boosting his support as there are just 10 days left in the campaign.
Crist calls the ads "misleading" and he has responded with his own saying he is "pro-life" but they are forcing him to address the issue with voters.
Crist has come under fire for saying that he would oppose overturning the Roe v. Wade decision that legalized unlimited abortions.
According to a Miami Herald news report, at a campaign stop, attorney Gerald Lostutter asked him whether he would sign a law banning abortions. Crist said he would as long as it had exceptions for rape, incest and the life of the mother.
”Eventually he’s going to have to address the issue head on,” Lostutter told the newspaper.
Polls show Crist with a strong lead heading into the primary battle.
Crist initially drew the ire of pro-life advocates when he voted against a 24 hour waiting period for abortions when he was a stat Senator. That action and his reluctance to take a clear pro-life stance in the gubernatorial election, prompted Florida Right to Life to endorse Gallagher in the September primary.
Crist has also come under fire for his role with regard to Terri Schiavo and her father, Robert Schindler, accused Crist of "letting my daughter die."
"He had it within his authority to save her life, but he turned a blind eye to her suffering. Even worse, he worked to ensure her death," Schindler said.
Terri’s name came up in a debate in April and Crist said he disagreed with pro-life Gov. Jeb Bush’s efforts to help the Schindler family protect Terri from a painful euthanasia death via starvation and dehydration.
"There are some decisions that ought to be left to God and family," Crist said. "Had I been governor, I would have not done the same thing."
Gallagher did not comment as directly but pointed out the importance of having a living will to express medical treatment wishes beforehand, AP reported.
"These kinds of end-of-life matters do not belong in government," Gallagher said. "But when these kinds of situations come in front of me, I would always err on the side of life. I think that’s what you must do when you don’t know anything else."