Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke on Monday night expressed his support for third trimester abortions, specifically the day before birth.
O'Rourke was speaking at the College of Charleston's "Bully Pulpit" candidate series when he was asked about abortion by a pro-life audience member.
"Someone asked you specifically, specifically about third trimester abortions, and you said that's a decision left up to the mother," the attendee asked. "So, my question is this: I was born September 8th, 1989, and I want to know if you think on September 7th, 1989, my life had no value?"
"Of course I don’t think that," O'Rourke said, "and, of course, I’m glad that you're here." He then shifted his response by repeating his previous talking points about the woman having the right to choose whether to have an abortion even if it's a day before she is expected to give birth.
"This is a decision that neither you, nor I, nor the United States government should be making. That's a decision for the woman to make," O'Rourke said, sparking cheers from women in the crowd. "We want her to have the best possible access to care and to a medical provider, and I'll tell you the consequence of this, this attack on a woman's right to choose."
"But what about my right to life?" the man asked.
"I listened to you, and I heard your question. I'm answering it," O'Rourke said. "And I want to tell you some of the consequences of this. In my home state of Texas, thanks to these 'trap' laws that make it harder for providers to offer the full spectrum of reproductive care, more than a quarter of our family planning clinics have closed."
He went on to say Texas is one of the "epicenters" of maternal mortality crisis, claiming women cannot get "safe, legal access to an abortion, you cannot get access to a cervical cancer screening, or a family planning provider."
"I don't question the decisions that a woman makes. Only she knows what she knows, and I want to trust her with that. So, I appreciate the question," O'Rourke concluded.
This isn't the first time he has defended third trimester abortions. Back in March, he said, "My answer to you is that should be a decision the woman makes."
Several of the Democratic presidential candidates have been asked about third trimester abortions, but they often dodge the question or dismiss the scenario as a "non-issue" or a "hypothetical."
Published under: Abortion , Beto O'Rourke , Video