During an interview yesterday, retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, a potential vice presidential pick for Donald Trump, said he supports abortion — saying it’s a woman’s decision. His comments immediately brought condemnation from a pro-life women’s group, which said Flynn is now “disqualified” from consideration.
“Abortion, I think for women, these are difficult issues,” Flynn told ABC’s Martha Raddatz on “This Week.” “I think that’s a difficult legal decision, and I think that women are so important in that decision-making process. They are the ones that have to make the decision because they are the ones that will decide to bring up that child or not.”
UPDATE: At midday today, Flynn reversed course and claimed he is a “pro-life Democrat” who wants to change the law on abortion.
EXCLUSIVE: LTG Mike Flynn tells me he is “a pro-life Democrat,” clarifies abortion comments by phone. “I believe the law should be changed.”
— Jennifer Griffin (@JenGriffinFNC) July 11, 2016
“This pro-choice issue is a legal issue that should be decided by the courts. If people want to change the law, vote,” Flynn said, according to tweets from Fox News’s Jennifer Griffin.
Flynn recalled his upbringing to a pro-life mother, attending rallies and driving floats. He added that the issue of abortion should be decided in the courts.
“If people are going to decide election on abortion issue they should just stay home,” he told Griffin, saying his priority was national security.
Flynn is the only one of the possible vice-presidential picks Trump is considering who is not pro-life. His pro-abortion views are at odds with the pro-life perspective held by others such as Indiana Governor Mike Pence, Iowa Senator Joni Ernst or former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.
In comments LifeNews.com received after Flynn’s remarks, the head of the Susan B. Anthony List said Flynn is no longer qualified to be selected as Trump’s running mate.
“General Flynn has disqualified himself from consideration as Vice President,” Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List, said in a statement. “His pro-abortion position is unacceptable and would undermine the pro-life policy commitments that Mr. Trump has made throughout the campaign.”
Pro-life writer Christine Rousselle says Flynn’s pro-abortion views make him a non-starter.
“Considering Trump has had serious issues when it comes to messaging and the pro-life position (which is the Republican Party’s platform), it probably wouldn’t be a wise move to pick a running mate who is in favor of abortion rights. Trump is having a hard enough time convincing people that he’ll be a suitably conservative candidate,” she said.
Last week, Trump condemned the Supreme Court’s pro-abortion decision striking down part of a Texas law that has saved thousands of babies from abortions.
Recently, Trump released a well-received list of 11 potential Supreme Court nominees — a list pro-life groups hailed for having strong supporters of the Constitution. He also told a group of more than 1,000 pro-life leaders and activists that he would appoint pro-life judges.
“We are going to appoint great Supreme Court justices… These will be justices of great intellect… And they will be pro-life,” he said.
If Trump is the nominee, he would present a stark contrast on abortion to pro-abortion Democrat Hillary Clinton.
Trump has specifically promised he would sign a bill as president to de-fund Planned Parenthood. In an interview with David Brody of CBN, Trump made that promise:
David Brody: “As a President Trump, if a bill came to your desk that would defund Planned Parenthood you would support that, you would sign that?”
Donald Trump: “Yes, because as long as they do the abortion I am not for funding Planned Parenthood… As long as they’re involved with abortion, as far as I’m concerned forget it, I wouldn’t fund them regardless. I would defund Planned Parenthood because of their view and the fact of their work on abortion…. I am for defunding Planned Parenthood as long as they are involved with abortion.”
As far as Trump’s comments on Planned Parenthood funding are concerned, Trump has fairly consistently said he opposes taxpayer funding but he’s also made some remarks about the “good things” Planned Parenthood does that have alarmed pro-life voters — as if any “good thing” could make up for the fact that planned Parenthood kills 330,000 unborn babies a year in abortions and then sells their body parts for profit.
Meanwhile, Trump said he thinks the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court case that ushered in an era of 48 million abortions was “wrongly decided.” Trump said he would appoint “very good judges” who would ultimately “change it” but he opposed Roe without specifically saying it should be overturned.