TORONTO, November 19, 2001 ( – Ontario Health Minister Tony Clement announced his candidacy to lead the provincial party and take over as Premier. Clement who plans to run on a campaign promising tax cuts and focusing on his youthful image was asked about abortion at the launch of his campaign.

“I’m probably about a 6 or 7 out of 10 on a scale of 1 to 10 on pro-life, pro-choice,” he said in response the questions, explaining that 10 would be pro-life and 1 pro-choice. “I believe there are some instances where the woman’s right to choose does trump other concerns, and there are instances where that is not the case,” he said. “I think it’s too difficult a moral issue to compartmentalize, at least [for] me, on one extreme or the other.” During the recent federal election any candidate who similarly avoided stating his position on an issue was attacked for having a “hidden agenda”. Jim Hughes of Campaign Life Coalition categorized Clement’s stated stand as “pro-life with exceptions.”

While Clement may be trying to avoid the wrath of the pro-life movement during his campaign, his supporters are known for their pro-abortion support. Clement is supported by Ken Kalopsis, a problematic pro-abortion member of the Canadian Alliance National council. The National Post points out that Clement’s wife, lawyer Lynne Golding, is a co-founder of Conservatives for Choice, a pro-abortion group she began in the 1980s.

See the coverage in the National Post and Globe and Mail: