He urged nations which retain abortion restrictions to defend their laws against abortion and also to complement such laws with “good policies in defense of motherhood, and for the support of mothers.”
Otherwise the pressure to remove abortion restrictions will be too strong, he believed.
“You cannot pit the support of the mother against the penal defense of the life of the child. They are two parts of one strategy to defend life. It is always better to have two legs.”
He noted that the pro-life movement has global and local aspects and must proceed on a strategy based on “prudential judgments” that respond to the particular circumstances of each nation.
Turning to U.S. politics, Buttiglione said it was important to seek “positive contact” with the Obama administration. He noted the president’s promise to Pope Benedict XVI that he would work to reduce abortions.
“I also want to reassure pro-lifers that we are not giving up on the life of one single child.
“We are not making an exchange, accepting the killing of a certain number of unborn children, in exchange for saving the lives of certain others. That is emphatically not what we are doing, and we do not renounce our principles.”
“[I]t is easy in the press to try to break the unity of the pro-life movement,” he continued. “Of course I want to be able to speak on friendly terms with the Obama administration – I know this is blasphemy to many pro-lifers in the United States! But on the other hand I want to be understood by American pro-lifers, and I do not want to break the unity of our front.”
In Buttiglione’s view, common ground efforts between pro-lifers and pro-choicers only have a “limited setting” in which compromise of pro-life principles is “completely unacceptable.”
In his Friday Fax interview, he also explained his push for a United Nations resolution that would ban the use of abortion as an instrument of population control. In some countries mothers are blackmailed to abort by conditions placed on assistance.
This cause could unite some who are “pro-choice” with those who are pro-life.
(Story continues below)
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“I want to make one thing clear, no one has renounced principles,” the Italian politician said. “Both sides will continue to struggle against each other on other issues, but at least on this one, we can be united.”
In 2004, Buttiglione was nominated as a commissioner of justice on the European Commission, the executive branch of the European Union. His nomination was stalled because of objections to his Catholic views on the immorality of homosexual conduct.
Buttiglione is planning a visit to the U.S. this fall to speak to pro-life leaders about his U.N. initiative.
To read the full interview with Rocco Buttiglione visit: http://www.c-fam.org/publications/id.1328/pub_detail.asp