Politics

              Republican presidential candidate, businessman Herman Cain talks to reporters following a campaign stop at the Statehouse, Thursday, Nov. 17, 2011, in Concord, N.H. (AP Photo/Jim Cole)
              Republican presidential candidate, businessman Herman Cain talks to reporters following a campaign stop at the Statehouse, Thursday, Nov. 17, 2011, in Concord, N.H. (AP Photo/Jim Cole)   

After initially refusing, Cain signs pro-life pledge

Photo of Caroline May
Caroline May
Political Reporter

After refusing to sign the Pro-Life Presidential Leadership Pledge in June, Republican presidential hopeful Herman Cain signed the pro-life group Susan B. Anthony List’s rigid pledge Tuesday.

“This decision is consistent with the Herman Cain we have come to know,” said SBA List president Marjorie Dannenfelser. “He understands the wound abortion is to America and especially to the most vulnerable among us – people that Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger labeled ‘human weeds.’”

Cain promised he would take the pledge seriously, should he be elected.

“I will do everything that a President can do constitutionally to advance the culture of life,” he said.

Months earlier Cain balked at signing the pledge, saying that while he is pro-life, it would be up to Congress to fulfill the pledge’s mandates, which include advancing and signing a Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.

“I support right-to-life issues unequivocally and I adamantly support the first three aspects of the Susan B. Anthony pledge involving appointing pro-life judges, choosing pro-life cabinet members, and ending taxpayer-funded abortions,” Cain said in June. “However, the fourth requirement demands that I ‘advance’ the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. As president, I would sign it, but Congress must advance the legislation.”

Today Cain explained that he is “100 percent pro-life.”

“I will not appoint judges who legislate from the bench. I will appoint judges who will strictly interpret the U.S. Constitution and understand the limitations on government and separations of power set forth in the U.S. Constitution. Where my powers in the Executive Branch are concerned, I will work at all times to oppose government funding of abortion. I will veto any legislation that contains funds for abortions.

To date Michele Bachmann, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, and Rick Santorum have all signed the Pro-Life Presidential Leadership Pledge. Two candidates who have already withdrawn from the race, Thad McCotter and Tim Pawlenty also signed. Cain represents the pledge’s eighth signer.

The four principles of the SBA List pledge:

FIRST, to nominate to the U.S. federal bench judges who are committed to restraint and applying the original meaning of the Constitution, not legislating from the bench;

SECOND, to select only pro-life appointees for relevant Cabinet and Executive Branch positions, in particular the head of National Institutes of Health, the Department of Justice, and the Department of Health & Human Services;

THIRD, to advance pro-life legislation to permanently end all taxpayer funding of abortion in all domestic and international spending programs, and defund Planned Parenthood and all other contractors and recipients of federal funds with affiliates that perform or fund abortions;

FOURTH, advance and sign into law a Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act to protect unborn children who are capable of feeling pain from abortion.

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