Monday Democratic 2020 hopeful Beto O’Rourke was asked if his life had any “value” before the day he was born, by a voter in Texas. The question leads the former congressman to declare that it’s a choice “for the woman to make.” The unnamed man asked, “My question is this: I was born Sept. 8th, 1989, and I want to understand if you think on Sept. 7th, 1989, my life had no value?”
He was referencing an answer O’Rourke delivered in Ohio where he was questioned about third-trimester abortions and responded with, “That should be a decision that the woman makes. I trust her.” On Monday, he gave a similar answer to the crowd. The only difference was him adding that he didn’t think that the man’s life had no value before he was born.
Answering to the voter’s question, O’Rourke said: “Of course I don’t believe that. And of course, I’m happy that you’re here. But you referenced my statement in Ohio, and it remains the same. This is a choice that neither you, nor I, nor the United States administration should be deciding. That’s a choice for the woman to make,” he said to loud cheers from supporters. The organization, Susan B. Anthony List, which rejects abortion, called the remarks “sick.”
His comments come as Democratic hopefuls have frequently moved away from stances that impose almost any restriction on access to abortion just as some Republican states have made a lot tougher restrictions on abortions likely setting up a future court trial to the Supreme Court Roe v. Wade decision that found constitutional freedom to an abortion.
In February All leading Democratic 2020 presidential hopefuls in the Senate voted down The Born-Alive-Abortion Survivors Protection Act, this includes Bernie Sanders of Vermont, Cory Booker of New Jersey, Kamala Harris of California, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota.
On Monday O’Rourke explained what he saw as an “attack on Roe v. Wade” from right-wing politicians and activists across the nation. He said that this attack was turning Texas into a hot spot of “this maternal mortality crisis” due to extended limitations on abortion, as well as what he said was a denial from the state’s lawmakers to expand Medicaid. He said, “I don’t question the decisions that women make. Only a woman knows what she knows, and I want to trust her with that.”