Michael Steele Defends His Pro-Life Abortion Views for GOP Chairman Race

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 8, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Michael Steele Defends His Pro-Life Abortion Views for GOP Chairman Race

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
December 8
, 2008

Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Republican Party chairman candidate Michael Steele has been criticized by some in the GOP as not taking a strong enough pro-life position against abortion. In a new interview, the former Maryland Lt. Governor defends his views and says he is absolutely pro-life.

“I was a monk for goodness sakes ok? I spent three years in a monastery," he explains to CBN News reporter David Brody in the Monday interview.

"When I came out and got politically involved I was an advocate for pro-life issues," he added.

"I was endorsed by National Right to Life. I don’t think they would endorse me if I were squeamish or squishy as some have called me on this issue," Steele added, referring to the endorsement he received during his Senate campaign in 2006.

Some of the criticism of Steele has come in response to comments he made years ago that make it look as if he is not completely sold on the idea of overturning Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision allowing for unlimited abortions.

“Roe versus Wade was wrongly decided. It should be overturned in my personal view," Steele said.

Steele says that if he is elected as the new Republican Party chairman that he will direct the GOP in a pro-life heading.

"We (GOP Party) value life born and unborn and we will fight for that and I will fight for that as an individual and I will fight for that as chairman of the party," he says.

The main point of criticism against Steele from some pro-life corners is his involvement in the Republican Leadership Council, a liberal GOP group that has promoted pro-abortion candidates.

Steele says those who attack him for his past involvement in the RLC need to "wake up" and understand that he is a pro-life conservative.

He told CBN News that he is pro-life and he wants the party to be pro-life but he is not going to exclude pro-abortion Republicans from the party.

“They have been beating me upside the head with it and let me give it to you straight on: Wake up people. I mean what are you going to do? Are you going to kick these folks out of the party? I have watched this party self disintegrate for the last four or five years. I’ve watched this party isolate itself from itself," he explained.

Steele said he only agreed to participate in the RLC because he wanted pro-life advocates to be represented and to build bridges with other members of the party to urge them to support pro-life advocates.

"I said well this will be good. It’ll be a pro-life conservative voice on a board with a pro-choice leadership that is looking to elect moderates," he said.

“For all you little folks out there who think that you’ve got me on this you don’t," he told Brody. "My being on this board had nothing to do with lessening my conservative values or somehow appeasing them or compromising them. It had everything to do with reasserting them.”

Reacting to the interview he conducted, Brody said Steele’s argument makes sense even though some pro-life advocates may not buy it.

"Bottom line: Steele wants a big tent GOP philosophy," he said. "Steele will probably have to work harder than others to get that albatross off of him. It’s doable. The guy is one of the best communicators the GOP has out there."

Steele said Barack Obama is getting a free pass from criticism from the media and that pro-life Republicans need to hold him accountable.

"As long as the media loves him, he’ll have [a long honeymoon] and I’m anticipating two years. I kid you not. I kid you not," he told CBN.

"Let me tell you why because they have too much invested in this guy. This is their creation. He is their creation. Not vetted. Not challenged and now he’s President. You think they’re going to undo that? You think they are going to expose the warts after the fact?"

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