Former Vatican ambassador defends Romney’s change on abortion

Former US Ambassador Mary Ann Glendon CNA US Catholic News 1 16 12 Former U.S. Ambassador to Holy See Mary Ann Glendon

Mary Ann Glendon, former U.S. ambassador to the Vatican, is featured in a new video supporting Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s pro-life conversion and citing his record of promoting life as governor of Massachusetts.

Glendon said that it is “very unfortunate” that Romney has been criticized “for coming to a pro-life position on the basis of information.”

“The pro-life movement is all about changing hearts and minds,” she said in a web video released by the Romney campaign on Jan. 14.

During his campaign, Romney has come under fire for his prior support of legal abortion.

His critics remain skeptical of Romney’s claim that he had a conversion to a pro-life position in 2004, after confronting the issue of embryonic stem cell research and realizing that it was wrong to create a human life simply to destroy it.

According to Glendon, however, Romney’s record as governor of Massachusetts from 2003-2007 shows that his pro-life convictions are sincere.

A professor at Harvard Law School, Glendon has spent years working in the pro-life movement, both in Massachusetts and across the country.

In the new online video, she notes that 85 percent of the state legislature is controlled by Democrats.

Even in this “very difficult political environment,” she said, Romney supported pro-life measures, demonstrating “great political courage” and expending significant “political capital” in doing so.

Glendon explained that despite the challenging political climate, Romney vetoed legislation that would have allowed embryonic stem cell research, as well as legislation that would have allowed the morning-after pill to be sold over-the-counter.

He also supported abstinence education in schools, she added.

Glendon described Romney as a “great friend to the pro-life movement” and explained that he and his staff always welcomed pro-life advocates at a time when “many doors of the State House were closed to us.”

“He was a great pro-life governor,” she said, “and he will be a great pro-life president.”

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