WASHINGTON -- Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) said Friday that the 2012 elections was not the time for Republicans to nominate someone with a wavering record on abortion, alluding to one of her competitors in the race.
Speaking via Skype to the National Right to Life’s Convention in Jacksonville, Fla., the Minnesota Republican did not mention former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney by name. But the target of her dig was clear.
The 2012 race, she said, was "not the time for Republicans to put up a candidate who is weak on this issue and has a history of flip-flopping on this issue.”
Romney has a mixed history with abortion rights. Formerly a pro-choice advocate, he claims to have converted his position in 2004. The health care law he signed in Massachusetts, which covers abortion procedures, has been a source of contention with social conservatives, as has his refusal, so far, to sign the "Susan B. Anthony Anti-Abortion Pledge," which marks candidates' promises to advance anti-abortion legislation and appoint like-minded judges. Romney has cited concerns over the broad language of the pledge.
Bachmann's Friday statement provides an preview of the type of attacks likely to come as the primary heats up. But the congresswoman wasn't solely interested in chastising Romney. Her harsher comments were reserved for President Obama, whom she called "the most pro-abortion president in our country's history."
Over the course of the conference, Bachmann, along with four other 2012 Republican candidates -- Herman Cain, Ron Paul, Rick Santorum and Tim Pawlenty -- touted their anti-abortion credentials and discussed how they would alter abortion policy should they be elected president.
Bachmann offered the most fiery rhetoric of the group, criticizing Obama for his 2009 reinstatement of the so called "Mexico city gag rule," which provides U.S. funding for international health groups that perform abortions, promote legalizing the procedure or provide counseling about terminating pregnancies. She also criticized the president’s health care law for providing taxpayer funding abortion. In fact, the law, as written, keeps longstanding policy restricting federal funds from going to abortion procedures.
Bachmann also stated she planned to officially announce her run for the Presidency this coming Monday in Iowa and then declared her intent to repeal "Obamacare." She also applauded the fact that at least six Planned Parenthood clinics in her home state of Minnesota were closing as a result of cuts made to the federal budget, calling the closures "a start."