In 2002, as a candidate for governor, Mr. Romney filled out a questionnaire for Planned Parenthood declaring that he supported "the substance" of the Supreme Court's 1973 landmark abortion rights decision, Roe v. Wade. Six weeks before he was elected, he sat for an hourlong interview with state officials of the advocacy group now known as Naral Pro-Choice America. Mr. Romney promised to maintain the status quo, keeping intact the rights that already existed under state law.At the end of the private session, when it became clear that the group was going to endorse Mr. Romney's Democratic opponent, he surprised its leaders by saying he could be a "good voice" and the most effective national Republican leader on abortion, said Melissa Kogut, a former Naral official who has detailed notes from the meeting."I thought, 'That's interesting. He's running for governor, and he's trying to convince us to get behind him because of the role he is going to play on the national stage,' " she said. "We left the meeting feeling pretty good."
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