WASHINGTON, D.C., July 9, 2012, ( –  Barack Obama has made Mitt Romney’s stance on abortion the focus of his latest attack ad, which a top fact-checking organization has said distorts the GOP candidate’s views.

The new 30-second spot, entitled “Troubled,” claims that the former Massachusetts governor “backed a law that outlaws all abortion, even in cases of rape and incest.” 

The advertisement refers to a comment Romney made during a 2007 president debate, when an audience member asked how he would respond to a hypothetical “federal ban on all abortion.” Romney responded that he would be “delighted” to sign a bill if “there was such a consensus in this country…But that’s not where we are. That’s not where America is today, where America is is ready to overturn Roe v. Wade and return to the states that authority. ”, an independent campaign watchdog run by the Annenberg Public Policy Center, said the ad amounted to “twisting Romney’s abortion stance.” The governor has no record supporting a bill banning all abortions, and has campaigned that he believes abortion should be legal following rape or incest.

“The ad goes too far … with its claim that ‘Romney backed a law that outlaws all abortions, even in cases of rape and incest,’” says “There was no actual law for Romney to back. Rather, the Obama campaign points to an answer Romney gave to a hypothetical question…”

The ad may also misrepresent what would happen if the Supreme Court would reverse itself on the question of the “right to privacy.” Overturning Roe v. Wade – the 1973 Supreme Court case that many abortion supporters concede is poor law – would not outlaw abortion in the nation but merely return the issue to the states.

The new Obama re-election ad also criticizes Romney for wanting to defund the nation’s leading abortion provider, quoting his statement: “Planned Parenthood? We’re going to get rid of that.”

Portraying the presumptive Republican nominee as an anti-abortion extremist may prove difficult, given his history of changing his outlook on the topic. To date, he has shown little interest in campaigning on the issue. Romney skipped several pro-life events hosted by Personhood USA attended by his rivals en route to becoming the Republican Party’s presumptive nominee.

The most recent ad came shortly after The Washington Post gave another Obama campaign ad, accusing Romney of outsourcing jobs during his time with Bain Capital, “four Pinnochios.”


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