Mitt Romney changed his stance on abortion in a late appeal to moderate voters last week, saying, “There’s no legislation with regards to abortion that I’m familiar with that would become part of my agenda.” Romney’s statement contradicts his pledge earlier this campaign to usher in anti-choice legislation. However, senior Romney adviser Ed Gillespie maintained on Sunday that the candidate has stayed “completely consistent” throughout the campaign.
Senior campaign adviser Ed Gillespie said on Fox News Sunday:
FOX’S CHRIS WALLACE: Why would he say he has no legislative agenda when there are at least two bills we know of that he would sign?
GILLESPIE: He would sign those bills. I think what they were talking about was the economy obviously [...]
WALLACE: He was talking abortion. When he was talking to the Des Moines Register he wasn’t talking about the economy, he was talking about abortion.
GILLESPIE: He has been consistent throughout the campaign. Governor Romney believes that Roe v. Wade was wrongly decided that it should be overturned that the American people should be allowed to adress this very important issue through their elected representatives. He believes there shouldn’t be federal funding for abortion and will act immediately to ensure that is not the case by reversing the Mexico City policy. And he would indeed sign legislation that further protects innocent life. He has been completely consistent here.
Romney has recently backed away from his “severely conservative” positions during the primaries, but the candidate’s earlier “pro-life” pledge includes a ban on abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy, denying federal funding for abortion and foreign family planning services, and overturning Roe v. Wade through court appointments. In the wake of the Todd Akin scandal, the last time the campaign shook the etch-a-sketch, Romney broadened his rhetoric to consider the health of the mother for abortions.