S.C. Primary Race Heats Up: Abortion, Health Law Affect Evangelical Endorsement
With the primary in South Carolina less than a week away and one candidate--Jon Huntsman--opting to end his campaign, news outlets covered some health care developments in the race.
Wall Street Journal: Romney Looks To Solidify Lead In South Carolina Debate
A narrowed field of Republican presidential candidates will square off Monday night in a debate that provides Mitt Romney with a prime opportunity to solidify his lead and gives his opponents a chance to establish themselves as the favorite among social conservatives. The debate will be held without former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, who plans to drop out of the race Monday morning and endorse Mr. Romney, former governor of Massachusetts (Mullins and Lee, 1/16).
NPR: In S.C. GOP Forum, Romney Gets Implicit Jabs
The GOP presidential candidate forum held Saturday in Charleston, S.C., was not exactly a debate. ... The event was moderated by Fox News host and former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee. All the candidates except for Ron Paul attended, but they never actually shared the stage. ... One member of the audience asked Jon Huntsman about his position on abortion. "I am very clear on my pro-life philosophy," he said. "I have always been pro-life, and I always will be." Romney supported abortion rights before he changed his position (Shapiro, 1/15).
The Washington Post: GOP Candidates In S.C. Battle For Evangelical Vote
The conservative bedrock issues of abortion, gay marriage and faith that have long shaped Republican campaigns in the South moved toward the forefront of the presidential contest ... Rick Santorum got a potential boost Saturday as a coalition of prominent Christian conservative leaders voted to back his candidacy in a last-ditch effort to consolidate social conservative voters (Rucker, 1/15).
Fox News: Battle For Social Conservatives Heats Up As Santorum Wins Key Endorsement
The conservative leaders met Friday night and again on Saturday. According to [Tony Perkins, head of the Family Research Council], those at the summit listed repealing the federal health care overhaul as their top concern, followed by the national debt and abortion (Roberts and Cameron, 1/15).
The New York Times: Evangelicals, Seeking Unity, Back Santorum for Nomination
In the discussions, Mr. Perkins said, participants were as concerned about repealing Mr. Obama’s health care law and fighting the national debt as they were about abortion and same-sex marriage (Eckholm and Zeleny, 1/14).
Politico: Santorum: It's Down To Me And Mitt
[On "Fox News Sunday"] Santorum took shots at Gingrich and Romney, saying "Romneycare" – a derisive term for the Massachusetts health care law that Romney signed as governor – was a “real scarlet letter” and jabbing Gingrich for House revolt that tried to oust him as speaker in 1997 (Kim, 1/15).
USA Today: FactCheck.org: Gingrich Makes A French Connection
Continuing a pattern for Gingrich ads, this one also goes after Romney on abortion, repeating a misleading claim that Romney’s health care law called for “taxpayer-funded abortions.” As we’ve said a few times now, the law didn’t say anything about abortions. Instead, the state exchange later determined that subsidized health plans would cover abortions, following a state Supreme Court decision that the state must cover medically necessary abortions if it’s covering other necessary care for pregnant women (Robertson, 1/14).