UPDATE: GOP Candidates Talk About Planned Parenthood, Cloning, Stem Cells and Personhood

by Nathan A. Cherry, 01/03/2012

Martinsburg, WV – Once again I am doing my best to make sure you are kept up to date with candidates’ positions as they enter the 2012 presidential election. This election could very well be one of the most important in America’s history and, for a number of reasons; conservatives need to be informed and ready to cast their vote. Below is some of the latest developments regarding where the current candidates stand on social and moral issues.

The Family Research Council (FRC) has compiled a very useful guide on where GOP candidates stand on a number of issues. Here are some of the highlights.

ABORTION: On the question of “Do you support or oppose taxpayer funding of abortions?” FRC has every one of the seven remaining Republican candidates listed as opposing direct taxpayer funding of abortions.

PLANNED PARENTHOOD:  When it comes to providing taxpayer funding for the nation’s biggest abortion business, six of the seven Republican candidates are listed as opposing federal funding. Jon Huntsman’s position is listed as unknown — although he recently told Red State, likely after the guide was compiled, that he would veto any congressional legislation that contains Planned Parenthood funding.

HUMAN CLONING: It is on bioethics issues that FRC begins to delineate differences between the Republican candidates with the question, “Do you support or oppose federal legislation prohibiting human cloning of all kinds, both “therapeutic” and “reproductive”?” Bachmann, Perry, Romney and Santorum are listed as supporting such legislation. But Gingrich is listed as opposing such a bill, citing a 2006 Discover magazine interview saying,  “I would not seek to ban research on stem cells in fertility clinics.” FRC lists Huntsman’s position as unknown on human cloning, though the former campaign manager of Sen. Sam Brownback, a 2008 GOP presidential candidate who authored a human cloning ban in the Senate, backs Huntsman.  FRC lists Ron Paul as having a “mixed” view on human cloning —while he opposes the practice his states rights approach made it so he couldn’t support a ban on it federally.

STEM CELL RESEARCH: The final pro-life issue covered in the Family Research Council guide is stem cell research and Bachmann, Paul, Perry and Santorum as listed as opposing federal funding of embryonic stem cell research. Gingrich is listed as “mixed” on the subject — having given past interviews saying he could support it and then recently issuing a statement in opposition.  Huntsman is listed as “mixed” as well — with past interviews saying he would support it and saying this year he would not. Romney is also listed as “mixed” by FRC, as it cited a 2007 Boston Herald article that it considered when compiling the guide. No other further information is provided on the article. The issue of embryonic stem cell research is what prompted Romney to convert to the pro-life position and he vetoed a bill that would have promoted embryonic stem cell research.

For many Americans the issue of life is at the top of the list for the candidate chosen as our next president. I confess that it is one of the main issues I will be watching and a determining factor in who I will vote for.

Several updates have surfaced recently on where candidates stand on this issue. It wasn’t long ago that the Susan B. Anthony List released their pro-life pledge and asked candidates to sign it. Of all the current candidates only Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman did not sign the pledge. Since that time a new pro-life pledge sponsored by Personhood USA has been released. The new pledge states:

“I proclaim that every human being is created in the image and likeness of God, and is endowed by our Creator with the unalienable right to life.”

According to Lifenews.com this new pledge has been signed by Newt Gingrich, Michelle Bachmann, Rick Santorum and Rick Perry. All other candidates have been asked to sign the pledge.

This pledge echoes the proclamation of President Ronald Regan’s January 1988 Personhood Proclamation. It was in this now famous proclamation that Regan declared “the unalienable personhood of every American, from the moment of conception until natural death.”

The new pledge also requires each signer to affirm their support “a human life amendment to the Constitution” and “endorse legislation to make it clear that 14th Amendment protections apply to unborn children.” Both are positions listed in the Republican Party Platform.

I hope this information has been helpful as you begin praying about and preparing to cast your vote for our next president. If those of us that claim to support life, traditional marriage and religious freedom allow these issues to guide our decision we can expect to see great gains in the fight to defend the conservative principles America is founded upon.

Pass this information along to others than want to know more about where candidates stand. I will continue to bring this information to you as a tool and a resource for your benefit; and the benefit of America.

About Nathan Cherry

Nathan Cherry is the chief editor and blogger for the Engage Family Minute blog, the official blog of the FPCWV. He serves also as the Regional Development Coordinator as a liaison to the pastor's of West Virginia. He is a pro-life, pro-traditional marriage, pro-religious freedom conservative. He is also a husband, father, pastor, author, musician, and follower of Jesus Christ.

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