Vice President Mike Pence defended the rights of unborn babies in front of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Thursday.
The two leaders met this week in Ottawa primarily to discuss trade relations, but Trudeau, who supports abortion on demand, said he also would bring up the abortion issue. Earlier, he accused the U.S. of “backsliding on women’s rights,” meaning abortion.
Pence responded Thursday that he will “always defend life.”
“I’m very proud to be part of a pro-life administration, and our administration has taken steps to stand for the sanctity of life at home and abroad,” he said, according to a White House transcript of the meeting.
“What we find troubling is the Democratic Party in our country and leaders around the country supporting late-term abortion, even infanticide,” the vice president continued. “But those are debates within the United States, and I know that Canada will deal with those issues in a manner that the people of Canada determine most appropriate.”
Pence said he and President Donald Trump’s administration will “always stand for the right to life.”
Trudeau said their conversation about abortion was “cordial,” but he and Pence have very different perspectives about the issue.
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The two world leaders’ records on the abortion issue could not be more opposite.
Trudeau supports Canadian law, which allows abortions for any reason up to birth and taxpayer funding of elective abortions.
His administration introduced a controversial new mandate for the 2018 Summer Jobs program, which provides employment to students throughout Canada. Anyone applying for grants had to sign a waver saying they support “reproductive rights” (abortion on demand) as a “core” value.
The move prompted a massive outcry from people of many different faiths and cultural backgrounds, and a number of programs that support immigrants, run camps for low-income and inner city children and provide other social services said they would have to close.
Trudeau’s administration refused to compromise in 2018, but it eventually did roll back the mandate for the 2019 grants.
In contrast, Pence has been a consistent, long-time advocate for unborn babies. As governor of Indiana, he signed a law to ban discriminatory abortions based on an unborn baby’s sex, race or disability and to provide a dignified burial of aborted babies remains. He also supported adoption tax credits, umbilical cord donations, and better informed consent measure for women seeking abortions, including full-color photos displaying an unborn babies’ development.
He and his family have been strong advocates for life for decades. They attend and speak at the national March for Life, and his daughter Charlotte has written several columns defending unborn babies against abortion.