Obama Ad Distorts Romney's (Confusing) Abortion Stance
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In an interview airing Monday night, Mitt Romney said he's in favor of legal abortion in cases of rape and incest. But that isn't what a new ad says.


(Image source: BarackObama.com ) BY CHRISTINA HARTMAN Mitt Romney’s current position on abortion is a little different from the platform of the party that’s just days away from making his nomination official. In an interview airing on CBS Monday night , Romney told host Scott Pelley: ROMNEY: "My position has been clear throughout this campaign. I'm in favor of abortion being legal in the case of rape and incest, and the health and life of the mother.” But that isn’t the imp ression voters are likely to walk away with if they watched an ad President Obama’s re-election team has been running Monday in Ohio, Virginia and Florida. “Both Romney and Ryan backed proposals to outlaw abortion even in cases of rape and incest. For women, for president, the choice is ours.” It’s a well-timed attack, given the week of negative publicity over Missouri Rep. Todd Akin’s now-infamous rape comments . And, to boot, a play for the female vote. But is the ad’s claim that Romney and Ryan back blanket bans on abortion true? At the top of the ticket — with Romney — no. But when Romney says h is position has been clear, one might be forgiven for at least a little confusion. When he was running for governor of Massachusetts in 2002, the Associated Press quoted him as promising to “protect the right of a woman to choose under the laws of the country and the laws of the Commonwealth”. But a Boston Globe piec e from 2002 quoted him as saying, “I do not wish to be labeled prochoice.” And while he then promised to keep hi s personal feelings against abortion separate from the politics, he did over time become more firmly anti-abortion. Now, as he told CBS, he supports exemptions in cases of rape, incest and when a mother’s health is at risk. Though his campaign’s website makes no mention of those exemptions, instead focusing on his belief that Roe v. Wade — which the site calls “a case of blatant activism” — should be overturned so the issue of abortion could go to the states. As for the other half of the GOP’s ticket, Paul Ryan has in fact suppo rted several pieces of anti-abortion le gislation, including a bill banning federal funding for the procedure. And, unlike Romney — he has opposed aborti on even in cases of abortion or incest. But then again, he’s also said i f they win, it’ll be the Romney administration, and the former Massachusetts governor will be setting the policy.