I like Herman Cain the man, but his lack of clarity on the abortion issue is a deal-killer for me. His public pro-life position has been consistent over the years, but he keeps muddying the waters when asked about his own family members. He did it last week with Piers Morgan, and now here’s an interview today with The De Moines Register in which he does it again:
DR: Part of your 2004 Senate campaign focused on your stance against abortion, something you’ve struggled in recent days to articulate after an interview with Piers Morgan. What did you need to clarify in that interview?
CAIN: I am pro-life from conception. Abortions, no exceptions. That has been my official stand from the beginning. What Piers Morgan was trying to do was to pigeonhole me on, “Well, what if this was your granddaughter?” You know what? If it’s my granddaughter? Yes, this is my official position, and it’s always been that. If it’s my granddaughter? I used the word “choice.” And that’s where they jumped all over it. A family will make that choice. I was not talking about the whole big issue.
Either Cain misspoke, or he is pro-life in his official position but allows for “choice” when it comes to members of his own family. Those are the only two alternatives, and neither of them is acceptable for the person seeking to be the standard-bearer for the pro-life cause. I am not looking for a perfect candidate. But I am looking for one who is competent to articulate, defend, and promote the pro-life view. Two gaffes in two weeks is enough to tell me that Herman Cain is not the best person in the field to do that.