"What I'm not going to do is get somebody's vote by tricking them," he said, noting that any attempts to criminalize abortion and punish women or doctors "is simply not consistent with the values that draw me to the Democratic party."
Candidate Andrew Yang at Saturday's forum that one "pro-life voter" told him his policy of providing $1,000-per-month universal basic income would support women in need, and that the voter would support Yang because of this.
"I have zero compromise when it comes to women's reproductive rights," said Yang, who has previously said abortion at any point in pregnancy should be up to the woman.
However, Yang said that abortion should not be celebrated-an answer that drew a rebuke from the head of NARAL.
"I think we have to get back to the point where no one is suggesting that we should be celebrating an abortion at any point in the pregnancy," Yang said
He added that "it's a tragedy, to me, if someone decides that they don't want to have a child, and they're on the fence, and that maybe at some point later-it's a very, very difficult personal decision, and it should be something that we're very, very sensitive to."
Ilyse Hogue, the president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, tweeted in response, "This was a bad take" which "shows a dangerous ignorance about abortions later in pregnancy and it perpetuates stigma of women who choose not to have families for reasons that are varied and very much none of our business."
At Friday's debate, candidates also promised they would only appoint pro-abortion candidates to the federal judiciary, and said they would codify Roe v. Wade.
Former Vice President Joe Biden said that legal abortion is "a fundamental value of the Constitution, while Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) advocated for "a national law to protect the right of a woman's choice."
Sanders pledged not to "nominate any person to the Supreme Court, or the federal courts in general, who is not 100% Roe v. Wade," and pushed to "significantly expand funding for Planned Parenthood."
On Saturday, Buttigieg said that "the American people" largely support the Roe v. Wade "framework" of few restrictions on abortion earlier in pregnancies and "very few exceptions" late in pregnancy.
(Story continues below)
Subscribe to our daily newsletter
At Catholic News Agency, our team is committed to reporting the truth with courage, integrity, and fidelity to our faith. We provide news about the Church and the world, as seen through the teachings of the Catholic Church. When you subscribe to the CNA UPDATE, we'll send you a daily email with links to the news you need and, occasionally, breaking news.
As part of this free service you may receive occasional offers from us at EWTN News and EWTN. We won't rent or sell your information, and you can unsubscribe at any time.
Buttigieg, however, did not give limits on late-term abortion that he supported, saying instead that "the time has come to trust women to make decisions for themselves."
For late-term abortions, he said, "usually we're talking about cases where, by definition, if it's late-term, a parent, a family, a woman is expecting to carry a pregnancy to term and then gets devastating medical news" about her health or the health of the baby."
"That creates an unthinkable situation," he said, and "that decision will not be made any better, medically or morally, because it is being dictated by some government official."