Presidential candidates react to partial-birth abortion ruling

The US Supreme Court, in a 5-4 ruling, has upheld the federal ban on partial birth abortions.  Here’s the Radio Iowa story with reaction from Iowa Right-to-Life Committee president Kim Lehman.  Planned Parenthood of Greater Iowa’s spokeswoman said they wanted to read the ruling first, and didn’t have a copy yet. 

As of noon, five of the Republican presidential candidates’ campaigns had emailed me a statement of reaction to the ruling.  Update:  One of the Democrats has issued a statement as of 12:10 pm central. No, Rudy Giuliani’s campaign has not been heard from — but you can read the others below, after the jump.

Posted in the order they were received:

ARLINGTON, VA – U.S. Senator John McCain’s presidential campaign today released the following statement: “Today’s Supreme Court ruling is a victory for those who cherish the sanctity of life and integrity of the judiciary.  The ruling ensures that an unacceptable and unjustifiable practice will not be carried out on our innocent children.  It also clearly speaks to the importance of nominating and confirming strict constructionist judges who interpret the law as it is written, and do not usurp the authority of Congress and state legislatures.  As we move forward, it is critically important that our party continues to stand on the side of life.”   

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Sam Brownback today applauded the decision by the United States Supreme Court to uphold the federal ban on partial birth abortions.  “I am very pleased that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled to uphold the ban on partial birth abortions,” said Brownback.  “This ban was enacted to put an end to one of the most grotesque forms of abortion, and it is completely in line with the respect for life that is at the very heart of our Constitution.  This is a great step forward for our nation’s citizens, born and unborn.” The U.S. Supreme Court by a 5-4 decision today ruled that the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act is constitutional.  The Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act was passed by Congress and signed by President Bush in 2003. Brownback continued, “I applaud the Court for finding that the constitution ‘expresses respect for the dignity of human life,’ and hope that this decision signals the Court’s willingness to revisit and reverse Roe v. Wade.”

WASHINGTON – Governor Tommy G. Thompson issued the following statement on the U.S. Supreme Court upholding the ban on partial-birth abortion: "I commend the United States Supreme Court for upholding the nation’s ban on partial-birth abortions. This decision sends a clear message that the United States values life and has no tolerance for this gruesome, abhorrent way to take a life. There is no place for partial-birth abortions in this country, and I am pleased the court upheld the law passed by Congress."

(Washington, D.C.) – Congressman Tom Tancredo (R- CO) rejoiced over today’s Supreme Court decision, ending partial birth abortions.  In these abortions, usually performed late in a pregnancy, the infant’s skull is crushed and extracted from the womb.“Today the Supreme Court put an end to this barbaric practice of infanticide,” Tancredo said.  “One can only hope this is the first step towards ending the tragedy of abortions.” This ruling, won by a 5-4 margin, is the first major victory for pro-life activists since Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito were appointed to the Supreme Court.  Both of them voted in the majority, along with Justices Clarence Thomas, Antonin Scalia, and Anthony Kennedy. Congressman Tancredo concluded by saying, “I am pleased the Court has finally begun to address the moral and intellectual travesty of Roe vs. Wade.”

Boston, MA – Today, Governor Mitt Romney issued the following statement praising the U.S. Supreme Court ruling upholding the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act: "Today, our nation’s highest court reaffirmed the value of life in America by upholding a ban on a practice that offends basic human decency.  This decision represents a step forward in protecting the weakest and most innocent among us."

Chicago, IL- Senator Barack Obama today made the following statement in response to the U.S. Supreme Court decision regarding abortion. “I strongly disagree with today’s Supreme Court ruling, which dramatically departs from previous precedents safeguarding the health of pregnant women.  As Justice Ginsburg emphasized in her dissenting opinion, this ruling signals an alarming willingness on the part of the conservative majority to disregard its prior rulings respecting a woman’s medical concerns and the very personal decisions between a doctor and patient.  I am extremely concerned that this ruling will embolden state legislatures to enact further measures to restrict a woman’s right to choose, and that the conservative Supreme Court justices will look for other opportunities to erode Roe v. Wade, which is established federal law and a matter of equal rights for women.”

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About O.Kay Henderson

O. Kay Henderson is the news director of Radio Iowa.