Willard Mitt Romney (aka Wall Street Willie) has been on both sides of most issues, and choice (a woman's right to control her own body) is no different. When he was running for governor, Romney ran as a pro-choice candidate. But he knew that wouldn't fly in this year's Republican primary, so he now claims to be anti-choice (I refuse to call it pro-life, because most anti-choicers are fine with killing all kinds of people -- as long as its not a fetus). The result is that currently no one can knows where Romney really stands on the issue (if he even has a stand).
That makes it important to know where the possible vice-presidential candidates stand on the issue of choice -- both because they could have an influence on Romney if he gets to the White House, and because the chosen veep candidate will be just a heartbeat away from being president. Unfortunately for America's women, this is a group that doesn't think women's rights are as important as rights for men. Think Progress has compiled the views of those considered the leading candidates. Here is what they found:
TIM PAWLENTY: The former Minnesota governor signed a mandatory 24-hour delay for women seeking abortion care into law, and while serving in the state House, he wrote a bill to require women to be told medically inaccurate information about abortion services. But Pawlenty also approved a bill ensuring that women who have been sexually assaulted have access to emergency contraception — a measure similar to one Romney vetoed.
ROB PORTMAN: While serving in the House of Representatives and Senate, the current Ohio senator has voted on 115 bills related to abortion and reproductive rights — 114 of which were anti-choice. Herepeatedly voted for the Federal Abortion Ban, which criminalizes some abortion services, and Portman co-sponsored a bill to effectively ban abortion coverage in state health insurance exchanges.
KELLY AYOTTE: The first-term New Hampshire senator has never cast a pro-choice vote. In 2003, Ayotte argued a case before the U.S. Supreme Court defending New Hampshire’s law requiring a girl who is a minor to notify a parent before she has an abortion.
MARCO RUBIO: The Florida senator has sponsored two bills that would gut the expansion of contraception coverage in the Affordable Care Act. He also voted to prevent Planned Parenthood from receiving federal funding, which would have denied health care and preventive services to millions of women.
BOBBY JINDAL: While serving in the House of Representatives, Jindal voted eight times to limit abortion access and other reproductive rights issues. And just last month, the current Louisiana governor signed three anti-choice bills into law.
JOHN THUNE: The senator from South Dakota co-sponsored a bill to allow hospitals to deny emergency abortion care, even when a woman’s life is in danger. And while serving in Congress, Thune has voted repeatedly to deny military women the right to use their own, private money for abortion care in military hospitals.