Anita Perry Pro-Choice? Texas First Lady's Abortion Comment Shocks

Image: Anita Perry Pro-Choice? Texas First Lady's Abortion Comment Shocks

Tuesday, 01 Oct 2013 02:55 PM

By David Ogul

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Texas First Lady Anita Perry has sparked debate among pundits and Internet commenters when she said in an interview that she sees abortion “as a woman’s right.”

Texas Gov. Rick Perry is a favorite of Christian conservatives who is opposed to abortion and recently signed one of the nation’s toughest laws regulating the procedure.

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Appearing to go against her husband's stance, Anita Perry made the comment about abortion at the Texas Tribune Festival

“I see it as a woman’s right. You know, if they want to do that, that is their decision. They have to live with that decision,” she said. 

Evan Smith of the Texas Tribune was somewhat taken aback by the comment.

“Mrs. Perry, I want to be sure you didn’t just inadvertently make news,” he said. “Are you saying that you believe abortion is a woman’s right, to make that choice.”

Perry stood by the remark.

“Yeah, that could be a woman’s right. Just like it’s a man’s right if he wants to have some kind of procedure. But I don’t agree with it, and that’s not my view,” she said.

Her comments were a hot topic of conversation on Twitter.

Anita #Perry's views on #abortion rights must make for awkward pillow talk in the #Texas Guv's Mansion.

— -- (A)Muse for Hire (@JennS79) October 1, 2013

Wait, is Anita Perry (Texas's First Lady, Rick Perry's wife) pro-choice?

— Matt Blair (@mjblair) October 1, 2013

Anita Perry, Rick Perry's wife, breaks rank on pro-choice

— Jacky Tran (@waxyjax) October 1, 2013

Texas recently became one of 13 states that bans abortions after 20 weeks. It also requires the procedure is done in surgical centers and that doctors have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital. Critics say the move is meant to shut down most of the state’s abortion clinics, but Anita Perry disagreed.

She said the law is “trying to protect women’s rights and their safety if a woman decides to go ahead and make that decision.”

In a commentary published in the Washington Post, Keli Goff noted, “Anita Perry is not the first high-powered Texas political wife to break ranks with her hubby over reproductive rights. Shortly after her husband was elected to the presidency, Laura Bush stirred controversy by saying she did not believe Roe v. Wade should be overturned. In 1992 her mother-in-law, then-first lady Barbara Bush, jolted the presidential campaign by saying in multiple interviews that abortion was ‘a personal choice’ and that she believed discussions of such matters didn’t belong in a presidential platform.”

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Related stories:

Anti Abortion Laws Lead to Clinic Shutdowns Nationwide

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