If elected president, Nikki Haley says she would strive to “find consensus” on the issue of abortion.
“Pro-life political leaders and candidates must not put up with being demonized,” the former South Carolina governor said.
“We should call out the extremism of the Left,” Haley said, adding:
We don’t need a president who endangers lives while dividing our country even more. We need a president who unites Americans and brings out the best in them, even on the toughest subjects. That will be my approach as president.
Haley, who also served as U.S. ambassador to the U.N. for two years under President Donald Trump, delivered remarks on abortion at the offices of Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America in Arlington, Virginia, on Tuesday.
The former governor told the small room full of reporters that she is pro-life for “very personal reasons.”
“My husband was adopted, and I am reminded of that blessing every single day,” Haley said, going on to say that her husband is “reason No. 1 that I stand for life.” She said the second reason she is pro-life is because she struggled to have children of her own, and “every day I wake up and see or speak to my two children, I feel blessed.”
As president, Haley says, she would seek to “save as many lives and help as many moms as possible,” stressing the way she would seek to do that is by finding “consensus” on the issue of abortion. Haley acknowledged that finding consensus on the national level will be much more difficult than at the state level.
“You only achieve consensus when you have a House majority, a 60-vote Senate majority, and a president who are all in alignment,” she said. “We are nowhere close to reaching that point.”
The reality, according to Haley, is that the pro-life laws many states have passed “will not be approved at the federal level.” And in like fashion, Haley said, “no Democrat president can override the [pro-life] laws of all 50 states.”
Still, the former governor said she believes common ground does exist on the abortion issue, and that common ground can be used to save lives.
“There is broad public agreement that babies born during a failed abortion deserve to live,” Haley said. “They need medical attention and the full protection of the law, just like every other baby.”
Haley did not address the fact that in January, all but two House Democrats voted against the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act, a bill former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., denounced as a part of an “extreme anti-choice agenda.”
Haley went on to say that there is “broad political agreement that we should never pressure moms into having an abortion,” adding:
They should get support to carry their baby to term. They should be able to get information from pregnancy resource centers.
Haley didn’t address the claims Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., made in July, that pro-life pregnancy help centers seek to “fool” and “torture” woman and that “[w]e need to shut them down here in Massachusetts, and we need to shut them down all around the country.”
Haley continued that “[w]e can broadly agree that pro-life doctors and nurses should never be forced to violate their beliefs.”
“The right of conscience matters just as much as the right to life,” she said, adding, “Surely, we can all agree that abortion, up until the time of birth, is a bridge too far.”
During her 22-minute speech, Haley did not address the fact that several states across the country, including Alaska, Oregon, and Vermont allow abortion up to the time of birth.
“We should be able to agree that contraception should be more available, not less,” Haley said. “And we can all agree that women who get abortions should not be jailed.”
Haley acknowledged that consensus does not get much attention in the media or among politicians because consensus “doesn’t get a lot of ratings or clicks,” adding that it was not long ago that Democrats and Republicans were able to find some degree of agreement on abortion:
Hating and judging each other has become the norm instead of respecting one’s personal story. I would remind those on the Left who demonize anyone who is pro-life that it was not too long ago, when [Democratic] President Bill Clinton said he wanted abortion to be, quote, “safe, legal, and rare.”
Few Democrats say “rare” anymore. Just the opposite. Many want legal abortion any time, for any reason, at any stage of pregnancy in every state and town in America. Some radical activists are even lighting pregnancy resource centers on fire. These are not the voices of consensus. They are acts of division and hatred. President [Joe] Biden has done nothing to discourage it. In fact, he promotes it. That’s not leadership; it’s more partisanship of the worst kind.
Haley’s pro-life speech took place just a few hours after President Joe Biden announced his bid for reelection in a video message, in which he claimed “MAGA extremists” are “dictating what health care decisions women can make.”
Haley announced her run for president in February, becoming the first major Republican candidate to challenge Trump for their party’s nod in 2024. Since her announcement, entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy, former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, and conservative radio host Larry Elder have all announced bids for the Republican nomination for president.
Haley was elected the 16th governor of South Carolina in 2010 and reelected in 2014. During her governorship in in 2012, Haley signed the Opt Out of Abortion Act, a bill designed to prevent state tax dollars from funding abortions, and the Born-Alive Infant Protection Act to provide medical care to babies born alive after botched abortions. In 2016, Haley signed a 20-week abortion ban into law in South Carolina.
Today, the issue of abortion should be discussed in “a way that allows Americans to show love for one another, not judgment,” Haley said as she concluded her speech. “And let’s find a consensus that allows us to save as many babies as we can, while supporting women in difficult situations.”
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Author: Virginia Allen