California Senate Debate Sees Barbara Boxer, Carly Fiorina Clash on Abortion

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Sep 2, 2010   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

California Senate Debate Sees Barbara Boxer, Carly Fiorina Clash on Abortion

by Steven Ertelt Editor
September 2
, 2010

Sacramento, CA ( — Carly Fiorina and Barbara Boxer clashed on the issue of abortion during a heated debate Wednesday night. Boxer attacked Fiorina’s pro-life views and accused her of wanting to put women in jail if abortions are made illegal, but Fiorina stood her ground and said she would support overturning Roe v. Wade.

Fiorina said she would support reversing Roe if the opportunity presented itself. That’s the Supreme Court case that ushered in an era of 52 million abortions and injuring millions of women physically and emotionally.

“Women would die like they did before Roe v. Wade,” Boxer said of Fiorina’s stance of overturning Roe — even though a leading pre-Roe abortion advocate, Bernard Nathanson, has admitted to faking the numbers of women dying before the high court’s decision.

"What the people of California have to understand is that if my opponent’s views prevailed, women and doctors would be criminals," Boxer, the pro-abortion champion in the Senate, claimed. "They would go to jail. And women would die like they did before Roe v. Wade."

Fiorina said she is pro-life in part from personal experience related to adoption and admitted, "not everybody agrees with me on this."

She said that while Boxer wants unlimited abortion mandated by the nation’s highest court, Fiorina said she is a "strong believer in states rights" and "I am prepared to trust the voters’ judgment."

Kathryn Lopez of the conservative National Review publication said she was pleased by Fiorina’s performance in the abortion debate and blasted Boxer for using "the tired women-would-be-jailed scare tactic."

"Boxer has made a decision to make a big deal out of abortion in the race, hoping to paint Fiorina as extreme," she said. "Fiorina is extremely comfortable in her pro-life position — she spoke with ease about even embryonic-stem-cell research last night, turning the question into a little bit of a teaching moment."

"Fiorina’s tone, manner, and facts make Boxer look like the extreme one," she added.

Lopez said a Fiorina spokesman recently laid out to her the differences between the candidates.

“Carly thinks we can and should curtail the tragic practice of abortion, not punish women — a mainstream position — whereas Barbara Boxer has voted five times against a ban on partial-birth abortion, supports taxpayer funding of abortion, and thinks a baby only acquires rights when it arrives home from the hospital," he said.

Marjorie Dannefelser of the Susan B. Anthony List, a pro-life women’s group, also responded in a statement SBA sent to

“Barbara Boxer’s attacks are an overused, inflammatory talking point that doesn’t convey an honest approach to the conversation. Carly Fiorina’s politics, as it relates to women, embody women’s lived experience," she said. "It rejects abortion at the center of a pro-woman perspective."

"Fiorina’s view on taxpayer funding of abortion is a consensus view in every state in the nation. This consensus is based in real policy currently on the table, yet as seen in the recent health care debate, the minority has been imposed on the American public. This has been the centerpiece of Fiorina’s conversation about abortion," Dannenfelser added.

The SBA leader said Boxer has been right on one point.

"On November 2nd the voters of California have a clear choice. Barbara Boxer’s support for abortion on-demand at the taxpayer’s expense puts her firmly in the minority on the abortion issue," she said.

Related web sites:
Susan B. Anthony List –


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