Donald Trump defends defunding Planned Parenthood despite boos at convention
MANCHESTER, NH, October 12, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) – Donald Trump was booed this morning at a gathering of political "moderates" after he expressed support for defunding Planned Parenthood, even at the expense of a government shutdown.
A woman asked Trump about Congressional attempts to defund Planned Parenthood, as the real estate tycoon addressed the No Labels Movement Problem Solving Convention in Manchester, New Hampshire, on Monday morning.
"I see that [defunding] Planned Parenthood is a deck chair on the Titanic," she said. "To shut down the entire government over it, it's kind of the small worlded [sic] mindset."
"Well, they don't want Planned Parenthood funded, and I think a lot of people understand that - including me," Trump replied. "They don't want it funded. I mean, I understand that."
His remarks drew a chorus of jeers from the No Labels event, organized by former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman, a liberal Republican, and former Sen. Joe Lieberman, a Democrat who supported the 2003 war in Iraq.
But Trump didn't back down. In response to a question about women's rights just moments later, Trump responded, "I happen to be pro-life. I’m pro-life."
Trump, who once described himself as "very pro-choice," said he changed his mind about abortion after seeing a friend's life transformed by a child others said should be aborted.
He has said consistently that he opposes taxpayer funding for abortion and that it would be worth shutting down the federal government, if necessary, to deprive Planned Parenthood of federal tax dollars.
His comments about life came immediately after he defended the small-government Tea Party movement. "I love the Tea Party. I'll tell you about the Tea Party - these are people that love this country," he said.
His comments found a prominent supporter: Talk show titan Rush Limbaugh.
"That's a good sign that he's being booed," said Rush on his radio program this afternoon. "Don't misunderstand this."
The No Labels movement was founded by self-described political "centrists" who are to the left of the Republican Party mainstream, especially on social issues like abortion and same-sex "marriage."
Democratic donor Jim Torrey, who attended the organization's founding event in December 2010, said, “Of all the people in the audience, if you drilled down you wouldn’t find that many Republicans.”
"The No Labels group is actually a bunch of libs. They're liberal Republicans," Limbaugh said today.
The group's organizers and founders, including former George W. Bush adviser Mark McKinnon, had floated the idea of nominating a "centrist" third party candidate for president in 2012.
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The candidate most publicly aligned with No Labels, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, is a staunch supporter of abortion-on-demand. His charity, the Bloomberg Philanthropies, gave millions of dollars to Planned Parenthood while former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush was a director.