House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi made a few comments in an interview with Melinda Henneberger that might raise a few eyebrows.
From Roll Call:
Later this month, it will be 43 years since the Supreme Court handed down the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, which does not ban the procedure in the third trimester, but does say states may ban it after 24 weeks — the outer edge of viability at the time — to protect fetal life. The Doe v. Bolton decision handed down at the same time, though, says that even when the state may restrict the procedure — only allowing it as necessary to protect the life or health of the mother — “health,” must be interpreted so broadly that it includes not only physical or psychological well-being but the woman’s family situation. Asked about the 20-week ban, Pelosi answered, “Let me say this; I’m a Catholic, a devout, practicing Catholic. I take great comfort in my faith, come from a very Catholic family, largely pro-life. I’ve had five children and the day my fifth child was born, my oldest turned 6, so I’m with the program in terms of the Catholic Church. However, if there’s one issue that really — I try to be dispassionate about how we find solutions — if there’s one issue that really is almost inflaming to women, is when politicians say we will influence the size and timing of your family; we will decide what is right for you. … “Most of those cases that we hear beyond 20 weeks are painful for the families — painful for the families — but that’s not up to politicians in Washington, D.C., to decide; that’s between women and their doctors.” So, lawmakers should never set any limits on abortion? “No,’’ she said, “I don’t believe in abortion on demand, I don’t believe in abortion on demand. I’m talking about the health of the mother and the child and this is not a decision that a politician should be making. This is about a woman’s judgment. This is about respect — respect — for women. I sometimes wonder if the Republican men who are here even know what’s going on in their own families, because the fact is that contraception and birth control is something that is used — I don’t believe that abortion is a form of birth control or contraception — and if you want to diminish the number of abortions in our country, you should love contraception, but they don’t.”
Read it all, including NARAL’s reaction to her comments.
Pelosi, of course, has in the past strenuously defended abortion, and has even called the right to abortion “sacred ground.”
Photo: Wikimedia Commons