September 16, 2014

Santorum has “problems” with recent Gingrich statement on abortion

Four Republican presidential candidates spoke tonight to a crowd of 1400 gathered in Des Moines for the premiere of a documentary called “The Gift of Life.”  

Rick Santorum used part of his speech to question rival Newt Gingrich’s committment on the abortion issue.

“I have some problems with some of the folks, you know, running for office these days when they say, “I believe life begins at conception,” Santorum said.

Gingrich issued a statement earlier this week to The Family Leader, a conservative Christian group, that is considering giving its endorsement to Gingrich. Gingrich wrote he believes “that life begins at conception.” Santorum ridiculed it.

“It’s like (saying), ‘I believe the sun rises,’” Santorum said, and the crowd began laughing and erupted in applause, cheers and whistles as Santorum added: “Why would you say you believe something that’s a fact.”

Gingrich — during his remarks to the crowd earlier in the evening — said the “central, moral question of our lifetime” is abortion.

“The whole reason behind Roe v Wade is a utilitarian, phony science reasoning that has collapsed under the weight of modern technology,” Gingrich said. “The fact is that as the country became more aware of Roe v Wade, it has turned more and more against abortion.”

The crowd applauded Gingrich when he declared that as president, he would ensure federal money is not spent on any abortion anywhere in the world. The crowd sat, hushed, as Michele Bachmann spoke of her own miscarriage.

“That little baby was 12 weeks old…That baby was perfect. I know without a shadow of a doubt every baby that God creates is perfect,” Bachmann said, “because we are created in the image and likeness of a holy God.”

Bachmann promised to “protect life” as president. Rick Perry criticized judges who “impose their beliefs” through their opinions and vowed to help pass a “human life amendment” to the U.S. constitution.

“The greatest victories in the battle for life is not going to be won in the halls of government. It’s going to be won in the hearts of men,” Perry said. “Yes, we must change the laws, but we must also change hearts and minds.”

Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, the victor in the 2008 Iowa Caucuses, was the host of tonight’s documentary premiere in Des Moines.  

“You know this event is not here to endorse a candidate, but I think it is significant that all four of the candidates present tonight have endorsed life and that ought to be very important for you to consider someone to vote for in the caucuses here in Iowa,” Huckabee said.

In other news from the campaign trail, Perry kicked off his 44-city bus tour with stops in western Iowa. Michele Bachmann described the grinding process of running for president as akin to having “the snot beat out of you” and Newt Gingrich was heckled by a pack of protestors as he started to give a lecture in Iowa City.