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More headlines: George W. Bush on Abortion

(Following are older quotations. Click here for main quotations.)


Kerry voted no on partial-birth abortion ban

KERRY: I’m against the partial-birth abortion, but you’ve got to have an exception for the life of the mother and the health of the mother under the strictest test of bodily injury to the mother. Secondly, with respect to parental notification, I’m not going to require a 16- or 17-year-old kid who’s been raped by her father and who’s pregnant to have to notify her father. So you got to have a judicial intervention. And because they didn’t have a judicial intervention where she could go somewhere and get help, I voted against it. It’s never quite as simple as Bush wants you to believe.

BUSH: Well, it’s pretty simple when they say, “Are you for a ban on partial-birth abortion, yes or no?” And he was given a chance to vote, and he voted no. And that’s just the way it is. That’s a vote. It came right up. It’s clear for everybody to see. And as I said, you can run, but you can’t hide. It’s the reality.

Source: Second Bush-Kerry Debate, in St. Louis MO Oct 8, 2004

Kerry’s abortion stance shows the wrong priorities

AD ANNOUNCER: When it comes to issues that affect our families, are John Kerry’s priorities the same as yours? Kerry voted against parental notification for teenage abortions. Kerry even voted to allow schools to hand out the morning after pill without parents’ knowledge. He voted to take control away from parents by taking away their right to know. John Kerry has his priorities. The question is, are they yours?

ANALYSIS: A television ad released July 16 by the Bush campaign attacks John Kerry’s priorities on “issues that affect our families.” The ad correctly cites two Kerry votes, on parental notification of teen-age abortions and emergency “morning-after” contraception. This ad oversimplifies two fairly complicated matters, a common failing of 30-second TV spots. Overall, it accurately highlights for voters a deeply divisive issue on which the two candidates disagree fundamentally: Kerry is a steadfast supporter of abortion rights-even for teenagers-and Bush is a strong abortion foe.

Source: Ad-Watch analysis by Fact Check.org Jul 20, 2004

Find common ground where good people disagree

Q: What is your attitude towards abortion:

BUSH: Surely we can find common ground to reduce the number of abortions in America. This is a very important topic, and it’s a very sensitive topic because a lot of good people disagree on the issue. I think what the next president ought to do is promote a culture of life in America. As a matter of fact, I think a noble goal for this country is that every child, born and unborn, ought to be protected in law and welcomed into life. What I do believe is, we can find good common ground on issues like parental notification or parental consent. And I know we need to ban partial-birth abortions. This is a place where my opponent and I have strong disagreements. I believe banning partial-birth abortion would be a positive step toward reducing the number of abortions in America.

Source: Presidential debate, Boston MA Oct 3, 2000

Approval of RU-486 is wrong

The FDA approved yesterday the abortion pill RU-486, but leaders on both sides of the abortion issue say debate over the pill will continue. The FDA approved the drug under a regulation that gives the agency more leeway to impose tighter restrictions or even take it off the market.“The FDA’s decision to approve the abortion pill RU-486 is wrong,” Bush said in a statement. “As president, I will work to build a culture that respects life.”
Source: Rita Rubin, USA Today, p. 1A Sep 29, 2000

Supports GOP abortion plank but disagrees on exceptions

McCAIN [to Bush]: Do you believe in the exemption, in the case of abortion, for rape, incest, and life of the mother?
BUSH: Yeah, I do.
McCain: [But you] support the pro-life plank [in the Republican Party platform]?
BUSH: I do.
McCAIN: So, in other words, your position is that you believe there’s an exemption for rape, incest and the life of the mother, but you want the platform that you’re supposed to be leading to have no exemption. Help me out there, will you?
BUSH: I will. The platform doesn’t talk about what specifically should be in the constitutional amendment. The platform speaks about a constitutional amendment. It doesn’t refer to how that constitutional amendment ought to be defined.
McCAIN: If you read the platform, it has no exceptions.
BUSH: John, I think we need to keep the platform the way it is. This is a pro-life party.
McCAIN: Then you are contradicting your platform.
Source: GOP Debate on the Larry King Show Feb 15, 2000

GOP should keep plank to ban all abortions

While Bush has said throughout the campaign that he is opposed to abortion, he has said he wouldn’t insist on an anti-abortion litmus test for judicial nominations or a vice president. Yesterday, Bush said he believes the Republican Party should keep a platform plank that calls for banning all abortions. “It’s going to be up to the Congress if America is ever ready for a constitutional amendment,” Bush said. “I understand that. The thing that’s important for our party is to nominate somebody who can lead the country, somebody who can lead us toward a better understanding of life, and somebody who can find common ground on issues such as partial-birth abortion and parental notification.“
Source: Boston Globe, p.A20 Jan 23, 2000

Focus on ways to reduce abortion; no litmus test

Several months ago, Bush said Roe v. Wade will not be overturned until hearts are changed and so we should focus on ways to reduce abortion. Last Monday he retreated further from the strictly pro-life agenda, saying he would not insist on a “litmus test” for court nominees. Bush will always call himself pro-life, but it looks like... he would never ban abortions.
Source: Time Magazine, p. 40 Jun 28, 1999

Reduce abortions by means within current law

Good people on both sides of this issue can work to reduce the number of abortions. Passing parental notification. Promoting adoption. Praising the quiet goodness of crisis pregnancy centers. Opposing public funding of abortion. Teaching abstinence to children. Ending partial-birth abortion. Building a culture of life, brick by brick. We are a society with enough compassion and wealth and love to care for children both before and after birth; to seek the promise and potential in every life.
Source: www.georgewbush.com/News “Parental Notification Law” Jun 7, 1999

Parental notification for minors

No matter where you stand on this next issue, I believe we all want to reduce the number of abortions in Texas. I look forward to working. to pass a bill to involve parents in this major medical decision for their minor daughters.
Source: 1999 State of the State Address, Austin TX Jan 27, 1999

No litmus test except strict Constitutional interpretation

“If elected, I will support Supreme Court judges who will strictly interpret the Constitution.” A strict stance on abortion, he indicated, would not rest at the top of his list of requirements for an appointee, though Bush has voiced strong personal opposition to most forms of the procedure. “I will not have a litmus test for my judges, except for: Will the judge strictly interpret the Constitution, and not use the bench to write social policy?”
Source: Ian Christopher McCaleb, CNN.com Aug 30, 2000

States should decide abortion issue; not Roe v. Wade

Bush said he counts abortion among the dozens of difficult issues that should be decided by individual states rather than the federal government. Roe v. Wade was wrong because it “usurped the power of the legislatures,” Bush said. “I felt like it was a case where the court took the place of what legislatures should do in America,” he said. But Bush refused to say how he felt each state should act. Instead, he said that when it comes to legalizing abortion, “it should be up to each legislature.”
Source: Boston Globe, p. A12 Jan 22, 2000

  • Click here for 30 main quotations from George W. Bush on Abortion.
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Other candidates on Abortion: George W. Bush on other issues:
Former Presidents:
George W. Bush (R,2001-2009)
Bill Clinton (D,1993-2001)
George Bush Sr. (R,1989-1993)
Ronald Reagan (R,1981-1989)
Jimmy Carter (D,1977-1981)
Gerald Ford (R,1974-1977)
Richard Nixon (R,1969-1974)
Lyndon Johnson (D,1963-1969)
John F. Kennedy (D,1961-1963)

Former Contenders:
V.P.Al Gore
Pat Buchanan
V.P.Dick Cheney
Sen.Bob Dole
Ralph Nader
Gov.Sarah Palin

Political Thinkers:
Noam Chomsky
Milton Friedman
Arianna Huffington
Rush Limbaugh
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Ayn Rand
Secy.Robert Reich
Donald Trump
Gov.Jesse Ventura
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Page last updated: Mar 16, 2014