Mitt Romney says he's "been as consistent as human beings can be" to a New Hampshire newspaper editorial board Thursday, which, if true, means humans are always changing their opinions on abortion. For instance: While Romney told abortion-rights activists he'd help make the Republican Party more pro-choice in 2002, more recently he said he'd support a law to declare a fertilized egg a person, which would make birth control like IUDs a murder weapon. An officer for NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts took detailed notes on the meeting her group had with Romney in September 2002, The Washington Post's Peter Wallsten and Juliet Eilperin report, and Romney hinted his moderation would be especially helpful as his political career progressed: "You need someone like me in Washington." But as his career has developed, it hasn't really worked out that way.
ABC News reports report that Democrats have a "scathing" web ad attacking Romney for saying on Mike Huckabee's show on Fox News that he'd "absolutely" support a ballot measure in Mississippi that would amend the state constitution to declare the "personhood" of embryos, making abortion murder. For evidence that Romney has not only failed to move the Republican Party leftward on abortion, but instead has let it pull him rightward, note that some pro-life advocates in Mississippi don't support the personhood law because they think it would hurt their cause in the long run.
But Republicans are attacking Romney for his abortion positions too. PolitiFact rates Jon Huntsman's ad calling Romney a flip-flopper on abortion "true" because, "Simply put, Romney’s views on abortion are vastly different today than what he expressed in the 1994 and 2002 debates." And Rick Perry is attacking Romney on abortion, too. He told a crowd in New Hampshire last week, "For some candidates, the issue of life is a slogan for the campaign. It's how to get some votes. To me it’s about an enduring principle that innocent human life should be protected in all forms and at all stages," The New York Times' Richard A. Oppel Jr. reports. Ed Morrissey, writing at the conservative blog Hot Air, says maybe the question is not whether Romney has changed his ideology, but whether he has any ideology at all.
But Romney insisted Thursday that his image as a flip-flopper is inaccurate. "I cannot state every single issue with exactly the same words every time... Folks... will try and find some change and draw great attention to something which looks like a change which in fact is entirely consistent."
And that Democratic ad:
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.