Unsurprisingly, GOP presidential front-runner Donald Trump is facing critical backlash for the disturbing comments he made Wednesday about abortion.
Trump said that abortion should be banned and if that happens, women who receive the procedure after the ban is implemented should endure “some form of punishment.”
He didn’t elaborate much more than that so there is no clarity on what type of “punishment” he had in mind or whether he would propose exceptions such as in the case of rape victims who are impregnated by their attackers.
As with most of Trump’s outlandish remarks, he received widespread condemnation for those insensitive comments from pro-choice advocates, his political opponents, and even anti-abortion groups.
The pro-life organization March of Life even referred to Trump’s comments as “completely out of touch with the pro-life movement.”
Eventually Trump was left with no choice but to retract his previous comments and release a new statement that said women who receive abortions are “victims” and it’s the doctors who offer the procedure who deserve punishment.
"If Congress were to pass legislation making abortion illegal and the federal courts upheld this legislation, or any state were permitted to ban abortion under state and federal law, the doctor or any other person performing this illegal act upon a woman would be held legally responsible, not the woman," Trump said. "The woman is a victim in this case as is the life in her womb. My position has not changed — like Ronald Reagan, I am pro-life with exceptions."
His new statement is still very problematic as women who exercise their freewill to get an abortion are most certainly not “victims.”
Furthermore, he still supports banning the procedure which translates to government controlling what women do with their own bodies.
However, Trump was a bit more politically correct in his delivery and offered a view that falls more in line with the beliefs of his pro-life supporters and right-wing comrades.
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His retraction may be too little, too late as he's already ruffled the feathers of people from the left and right and voters are questioning his shaky stance on this issue.
Trump has been criticized for having a wavering perspective about abortion because back in 1999 he said during an interview that he wasn’t a proponent of the "concept of abortion," but he was pro-choice.
Flash forward to his 2016 presidential run, and he is now claiming to be “pro-life with exceptions.”
Trump’s changing stance isn’t out of the norm for politicians who are known to “flip-flop” on issues, but it does prompt conservative voters to question how dedicated he is to the pro-life, anti-abortion agenda.
His initial remarks about “punishment” for women who undergo abortions may not fall in line with either the pro-life or pro-choice beliefs, but they do reflect the sexist and misogynistic attitude he has continuously shown throughout his campaign.
The women who were willing to overlook his previous displays of misogyny and continue supporting his campaign are likely seriously reconsidering now.