- Nikki Haley is calling for a “national consensus” on the issue of abortion, and believes that strict abortion bans like some that red states have recently passed would not fare well at the federal level, she said in a Tuesday press conference.
- Haley believes abortion shouldn’t be “politicized” and that America must reach some common ground to “move Americans more toward life,” she said.
- “The issue should be addressed with sensitivity and respect, not judgement and hate,” said Haley. “Abortion is a deeply personal topic for both women and men, I understand why: someone’s body and someone else’s life are not things to be taken lightly and they should not be politicized.”
Former South Carolina Gov. and Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley called for a “national consensus” on abortion at a press conference Tuesday, acknowledging that strict abortion bans won’t pass at the federal level.
Haley nodded to last year’s Dobbs vs Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision, which handed the power to restrict abortion back to the states, and said the states were able to come to a “consensus” on what best reflects their constituents’ “values,” she said at the press conference. The former U.N. ambassador, who referred to herself as “unapologetic[ally]” pro-life, noted how some red states’ abortion policies that have been enacted since the decision wouldn’t pass federally. (RELATED: Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves Signs Sweeping ‘Pro-Mom And Pro-Life’ Measures)
“You don’t save any lives if you can’t enact your position into law, and you can’t do that unless you find consensus,” said Haley. “I want to save as many babies and help as many moms as possible, that’s my goal. To do that at the federal level, the next president must find national consensus.”
Haley said “it’s just a fact” that strict abortion bans won’t pass at the federal level. Following the Dobbs decision, states like Alabama, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Mississippi, Louisiana, Tennessee, Texas and several more have strengthened their abortion laws.
The former governor commended the states who stood against abortion, but said she doesn’t “demonize” those who disagree, and want less restrictions. While her goal as president is to “move Americans more toward life,” she said the issue shouldn’t be politicized and conveyed the nation won’t get anywhere without some common ground.
“Different people in different places are taking different paths — that’s what the founders of our country envisioned. It’s the reality of living in a Democracy,” said Haley. “If we want to protect more moms and save more babies, we need more Americans to join with us. We must persuede people to find consensus, not push them further away.”
Public opinion has shifted towards supporting abortion in the majority of cases with
The majority of Americans believe abortion should be legal in any or all cases with 85% support in May 2022, which is a 9 point hike from when the Gallup poll began in 1975. Since the Dobbs decision, support for abortion has remained high with 62% of adults in July 2022, a PEW Research poll indicates.
“My heart hurts when someone decides not to go through with a pregnancy.” pic.twitter.com/9DkaJTgEfp
— Citizen Free Press (@CitizenFreePres) April 25, 2023
The former governor was sympathetic to those mothers who “never wanted” to get pregnant and couldn’t support themselves and a baby, as well as those who unintentionally got pregnant from rape, she said at the press conference. Haley mentioned that she had a friend who was raped and in “anguish” with concerns of getting pregnant.
“We can’t ignore the fears of those women,” she said.
Haley drew on personal experiences with her husband and children that prompted a pro-life position. The former governor’s husband was adopted and she struggled to become pregnant, Haley said at the press conference.
“Every day that I get to spend with the love of my life reminds me that I am blessed that someone saved his life,” said Haley. “I often think about what would’ve happened if Michael had not been so blessed — if his biological mother had chosen a different path.”
The former governor also drew on her track record in South Carolina both as the executive and state legislator, she said at the press conference. Haley touted voting for every pro-life bill that came before her as a state legislator, as well as signing legislation like the Born Alive Infant Protection Act as governor, which safe-guarded babies who survived abortions by providing them with legal protection.
“The issue should be addressed with sensitivity and respect, not judgement and hate,” said Haley. “Abortion is a deeply personal topic for both women and men, I understand why: someone’s body and someone else’s life are not things to be taken lightly and they should not be politicized.”
Haley held the press conference at the Susan B. Anthony (SBA) Pro-Life America building, a pro-life nonprofit that seeks to end abortion in America.
“She understands that the topic of abortion is not going away and that you must lean in, not lean back. The American people deserve a compassionate debate centered around the humanity of both mother and child. She promised to not demonize either side of this issue but to approach it with the careful consideration that is needed,” SBA Pro-Life America President Marjorie Dannenfelser said in a statement. “States have every right and should protect life. But Ambassador Haley also understands that as a nation we must build a national consensus to save as many lives and serve as many women as possible.”
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