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Not So Much

Romney’s conversion was less abrupt than is often portrayed. In his 1994 Senate run, Romney was endorsed by Massachusetts Citizens for Life and kept their endorsement, even though he declared himself to be pro-choice, because he supported parental-consent laws, opposed taxpayer-funded abortion and mandatory abortion coverage under a national health insurance plan, and was against the Freedom of Choice Act, which would have codified Roe v. Wade by federal statute. ~James Bopp Jr.

Hm, Massachusetts Citizens for Life…where have I heard that name before?  Oh, I know–they would be the group whose 1994 endorsement Romney repudiated in disgust in his 2002 gubernatorial race.  See the video at 1:23 and after. 

Romney: “I don’t know about the endorsement of the Mass Citizens for Life, I didn’t seek it, I didn’t ask for it [grimaces].  When you say I accepted it, I didn’t write them a letter and say, here, thank you very much for your endorsement…Shannon, I can tell you again, I did not, in any way, acknowledge their endorsement nor do I…When you say I accepted it, in what way did I accept it, Shannon?…I don’t have a campaign spokesperson here tonight, I’m here right now and I can tell you that I do not take the position of a pro-life candidate.  I am in favor of preserving and protecting a woman’s right to choose, and your effort to continue to try to create fear and deception here is unbecoming.” 

Yes, creating deception is bad.  Candidates should avoid trying to deceive people!  So, either someone has misinformed Mr. Bopp about the nature of Romney’s response to the endorsement (he obviously vehemently denied having anything to do with it in 2002), or Bopp is telling the truth about the endorsement and Romney was a blatant liar in 2002 or Mr. Bopp has been co-opted to lie on Romney’s behalf.  The latter seems most unlikely, since Mr. Bopp has no reason to join in Romney’s deceptions if he knew them to be false, so the other two seem the more likely explanations.

about the author

Daniel Larison is a senior editor at TAC, where he also keeps a solo blog. He has been published in the New York Times Book Review, Dallas Morning News, World Politics Review, Politico Magazine, Orthodox Life, Front Porch Republic, The American Scene, and Culture11, and was a columnist for The Week. He holds a PhD in history from the University of Chicago, and resides in Lancaster, PA. Follow him on Twitter.

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