Mitt Romney Won’t Call Abortion "Murder," Brownback Campaign Criticizes

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jun 3, 2007   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Mitt Romney Won’t Call Abortion "Murder," Brownback Campaign Criticizes

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by Steven Ertelt Editor
June 3
, 2007

Laconia, NH ( — At a campaign event in New Hampshire last week, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney would not go so far as to label abortion "murder." The former Massachusetts governor’s reluctance to use a term frequently employed by pro-life advocates drew criticism from Sam Brownback’s campaign.

Romney appeared in the Granite State on a whistle tour campaign that finished up with an hour-long town meeting where attendees could ask the candidate any question they wanted.

A man who described himself as a "social conservative" wanted Romney to answer the question of whether he thought abortion was "murder."

Romney declined to characterize abortion that way and said that the term "means different things to different people."

He added that the bottom line for him is that at conception the unborn child is "alive and it is human" and he called abortion the taking of a human life. Romney also said that Roe v. Wade should be overturned and states should be able to make their own decisions on abortion.

Martin Gillespie, political director of Sam Brownback’s campaign seized on those comments and told that he thought Romney was again changing his position on abortion.

"Mitt Romney’s flip-flops on abortion throughout the years make more sense now," he said. "Every different Romney flip-flop on abortion has coincided perfectly with the most politically expedient position of the campaign he was in."

"Romney says life begins at conception, but doesn’t think abortion is murder and Romney says he’s pro-life but he thinks states should be able to choose to allow abortion," Gillespie added. "Every time he tries to clarify, as he tried to do last week, it becomes more and more confusing."

Responding to the Brownback campaign’s comments, Kevin Madden, a spokesman for Romney, talked with

“Governor Romney is firmly pro-life and is he will continue to encourage, promote and defend pro-life policies," he said. "Advocacy of these policies and bringing others towards a pro-life position is an important part of the governor’s efforts.”

Gillespie indicated that Romney has repeatedly said he opposes a Human Life Amendment to the Constitution that would affirm legal protection for unborn children

"Unlike Romney, Sam Brownback is a strong supporter of the Human Life Amendment and is genuinely pro-life," Gillespie maintained.