Mitt Romney Says Rudy Giuliani, John McCain Flip-Flopped on Abortion

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Apr 27, 2007   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Mitt Romney Says Rudy Giuliani, John McCain Flip-Flopped on Abortion Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
April 27
, 2007

Washington, DC ( — Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney on Thursday said that fellow Republican presidential candidates John McCain and Rudy Giuliani have changed their views on abortion. He should know, as Romney switched from a pro-abortion to a pro-life position a couple years ago after confronting embryonic stem cell research.

Romney said that McCain, an Arizona senator who opposes abortion, in a 1999 interview said he opposed overturning Roe but now supports overturning the ruling.

On Thursday, Romney told the Associated Press, that “everybody in this race that I know has changed their mind on certain positions, and they’ve done so as they gained more experience.”

He singled out Giuliani and McCain, saying the latter "was opposed to overturning Roe v. Wade. Now he’s for overturning Roe v. Wade.”

“Mayor Giuliani has made a number of changes over his career, and there are places where I’ve made changes,” Mr. Romney said in the Associated Press interview.

McCain said he wouldn’t respond directly to the comments, saying it was too early in the campaign to be going after other candidates.

“I have voted pro-life for 24 years, consistently, without any deviation," he said, according to a New York Times report.

On his opwn abortion flip-flip, Romney responded: "I’m not going to apologize for saying I was wrong and now I think I’m right."

In fact, McCain has come under fire for seemingly flip-flopping on whether he wants Roe v. Wade overturned and he’s insisted he hasn’t.

In 1999, he gave a statement to the San Francisco Chronicle in which he said he didn’t support repealing Roe.

"I’d love to see a point where it is irrelevant, and could be repealed because abortion is no longer necessary," McCain told the newspaper at the time. "But certainly in the short term, or even the long term, I would not support repeal of Roe v. Wade, which would then force X number of women in America to [undergo] illegal and dangerous operations."

But then, at an appearance in South Carolina last month, McCain said the Supreme Court should reverse itself on Roe and allow states the opportunity to ban abortions.

“I do not support Roe versus Wade. It should be overturned,” McCain said.

The next day, in a visit with voters in Vero Beach, Florida, the Arizona senator said he didn’t flip-flop.

"It is a false claim to say that I have changed my position," McCain said in a press conference following the event.

Between 1999 and today, McCain voted on the Supreme Court case.

In March 2003, pro-abortion lawmakers attached a resolution to the partial-birth abortion ban supporting Roe v. Wade and saying it shouldn’t be overturned. McCain voted against the resolution and it was later removed from the bill.

Yet, in October 1999, McCain was the only member of the Senate to skip two votes on another resolution endorsing Roe. He later came under fire from pro-life advocates during the 2000 Republican presidential primaries for not opposing the provision.

Giuliani has endured significant criticism not only for his pro-abortion position but for flip-flopping on whether he supports a ban on partial-birth abortions.