Donald Trump reverses stance on 'punishment' for women who get illegal abortions

Donald Trump.
(Image credit: Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Donald Trump is taking back a statement he made about abortion Wednesday during an MSNBC town hall. While speaking with Chris Matthews, the Republican frontrunner said if the procedure is ever outlawed in the United States, there has to be "some form of punishment" for women who have abortions illegally.

On Wednesday afternoon, Trump's campaign e-mailed a statement to Bloomberg Politics, saying the "issue is unclear and should be put back into the state for determination. Like Ronald Reagan, I am pro-life with exceptions, which I have outlined numerous times." Later in the afternoon, Trump released an additional statement clarifying his new position. "If Congress were to pass legislation making abortion illegal and the federal courts upheld this legislation, or any state were permitted to ban abortion under state and federal law, the doctor or any other person performing this illegal act upon a woman would be held legally responsible, not the woman," he said. "The woman is a victim in this case as is the life in her womb. My position has not changed — like Ronald Reagan, I am pro-life with exceptions."

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