Like every other presidential candidate in the GOP, frontrunner Donald Trump is firmly anti-abortion. However, Trump has taken a more progressive view of Planned Parenthood than any of his Republican colleagues.
During the tenth GOP debate on Thursday night, Trump defended the organization, which has been relentlessly attacked by GOP candidates since a series of sting videos falsely alleged the organization profited from the sale of fetal tissue this summer. Millions of women have been helped by Planned Parenthood, he said, noting that women receive critical services like cancer screenings.
However, before you start daydreaming about Trump skipping down the street with new BFF Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards, no—this does not mean that Trump really supports Planned Parenthood, either. Like his Republican colleagues, Trump made it clear that he is in favor of defunding the organization because it perform abortions.
It is a perplexing stance, indeed:
His comments during the debate echoed a statement he made on Meet the Press on Sunday, when he said, "Planned Parenthood does a really good job at a lot of different areas. But not on abortion. So I'm not going to fund it if it's doing the abortion. I am not going to fund it."
Still, it was quite a moment when Trump—a man who has characterized Mexicans as rapists, wants to ban Muslims from entry into the U.S., and whose immigration policy includes building a giant wall—sounded more moderate than his colleagues.
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