Tim Pawlenty on Abortion

Republican MN Governor

Criminal sanctions against abortion doctors, not women

Q: You often cite an article in National Review saying you may be the strongest pro-life candidate in the race. What's the basis for that?

A : National Review's article said based on results, not rhetoric, that I'm perhaps the most pro-life candidate i this race. When I was governor, I proposed and signed into law the Women's Right to Know bill; the Positive Alternatives to Abortion bill; the Fetal Pain bill and more. And our abortion rate in Minnesota has dropped dramatically, in fact, now at historic lows. In terms of my personal views, the only exception I can really reconcile or justify is the life of the mother.

Q: Do you support criminal charges for doctors who perform abortions?

A: I think there should be absolutely consequences for doctors who perform abortions, when it's illegal, and the possibility of criminal sanctions or severe civil sanctions. I don't think the woman involved should be criminally sanctioned.

Source: Iowa Straw Poll 2011 GOP debate in Ames Iowa , Aug 11, 2011

Based on results, I'm the most pro-life candidate

Q: [to Bachmann]: Gov. Pawlenty says he opposes abortion rights except in cases of rape, incest, or when the mother's life is at stake. Do you have any problem with that position?

BACHMANN: I am 100 percent pro-life. The very few cases that deal with those exceptions are the very tiniest of fraction of cases, and yet they get all the attention.

PAWLENTY: This is a great example where we can look at our records. The National Review Online, which is a conservative publication, said based on results-- not just based on words--I was probably the most pro-life candidate in this race. As governor, I appointed to the Supreme Court a conservative court for the first time in the modern history of my state. We passed the most pro-life legislation anytime in the modern history of the state, which I proposed and signed, including women's right to know, including positive alternatives to abortion legislation, and many others. I'm solidly pro-life. And I haven't just talked about these things; I've done it.

Source: 2011 GOP primary debate in Manchester NH , Jun 13, 2011

Stem-cell research ok on previous embryos, but not new ones

Q: federal court struck down the ban on using federal funds for embryonic stem cell research. You identify yourself as strongly pro-life but don't oppose government funding research on existing stem cell lines already derived from embryos. Isn't that still spending taxpayer money on elements generated by at some point destroying an embryo?

A: Stem cell research holds great promise and I support stem cell research. I think it should be adult-derived. Most of the therapies and breakthrough that we are seeing in terms of treatment are coming from adult-derived stem cell research. I strongly support that. As to embryonic stem cell research, I don't think we should pursue that, although Pres. Bush authorized the use of research on certain ste cell lines for which the embryo had already previously been destroyed before the issue came to his desk. I did support his approach for that limited window of stem cell research on those existing lines for which the embryo had already been destroyed.

Source: 2011 GOP primary debate in South Carolina , May 5, 2011

1991: favored parental notification & informed consent

[A 1991 article described Pawlenty as] an atypical Republican because he was concerned about poverty but "the abortion issue wasn't a big deal to him."

Though social issues were generally avoided in his campaign, he was asked whether he favored "any additional restrictions on women's right to abortion." He said he supported parental notification requirements for abortions performed on minors, and also informed consent procedures, "which involves an explanation of risks and possible alternatives."

Source: Sam's Club Republican, by J.A. McClure, p. 12-13 , May 10, 2010

Prohibit partial-birth abortion; require 24-hour wait

Pawlenty is pro-life and supports several restrictions on abortion. While in the Minnesota House in 1998, Pawlenty requested the bill prohibit partial-birth abortions and expand reporting requirements for doctors. In the 2000 legislative session, Pawlenty voted in favor of a bill requiring a 24-hour waiting period for women seeking abortions.
Source: Sam's Club Republican, by J.A. McClure, p. 64 , May 10, 2010

Appointed pro-life Chief Justice of MN Supreme Court

Pawlenty is strongly pro-life on both abortion and bioethics issues and he says he would be “surprised” if McCain picked a running mate who doesn’t share his pro-life views.

Pawlenty said it would be “hard on the Republican Party” if McCain chose a running mate who is pro-choice.

Pawlenty has done well in part because he has attracted Democrats in a state where large numbers of both parties are pro-life.

Pawlenty dubs himself as “a strong and vocal supporter of pro-life issues,” and he has crafted a pro-life record both as governor and as Republican leader of the state House of Representatives before that. With judicial appointments remaining one of the top pro-life issues, Pawlenty named Eric Magnuson, an attorney who has worked with pro-life groups, the Chief Justice of the Minnesota Supreme Court.

Source: Pro-life website, LifeNews.com , Aug 12, 2008

No liberty greater than the right to life

Pawlenty spoke at the 2007 March for Life conducted by Minnesota Citizens Concerns for Life. At the event, he minced no words when it comes to the pro-life position he takes. “We are gathered here to say that there is no liberty greater than the right to life. We’re here to affirm that we need to extend that right to the most vulnerable among us, and that is the unborn,” he said.
Source: Pro-life website, LifeNews.com , Aug 12, 2008

Supports the Pro-life Presidential Leadership Pledge.

Pawlenty signed the Pro-life Presidential Leadership Pledge

The Susan B. Anthony List's 2012 Pro-life Presidential Leadership Pledge asks declared presidential candidates to commit to key pro-life goals if elected to the presidency in 2012. While this is by no means a complete list of all pro-life objectives, having a President that actively supports these pro-life aims will keep up the momentum to achieve our ultimate goal of ending abortion in this country. The Pro-life pledge:

Source: Pro-life Presidential Leadership Pledge 12-SBA on Jan 1, 2012

Other candidates on Abortion: Tim Pawlenty on other issues:
Pres.Barack Obama
V.P.Joe Biden
GOP Candidates:
Rep.Michele Bachmann(MN)
Herman Cain(GA)
Rep.Newt Gingrich(GA)
Gov.Jon Huntsman(UT)
Gov.Gary Johnson(NM)
Rep.Thaddeus McCotter(MI)
Rep.Ron Paul(TX)
Gov.Rick Perry(TX)
Gov.Buddy Roemer(LA)
Gov.Mitt Romney(MA)
Sen.Rick Santorum(PA)
GOP Withdrawals:
Gov.Haley Barbour(MS)
Gov.Chris Cristie(NJ)
Mayor Rudy Giuliani(NYC)
Gov.Mike Huckabee(AR)
Gov.Bobby Jindal(LA)
Gov.Sarah Palin(AK)
Gov.Tim Pawlenty(MN)
Donald Trump(NY)
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Page last updated: Feb 23, 2012