On Saturday, Personhood USA–the group behind the flood of bills that define life as starting at conception—will co-host its third forum of the GOP presidential primaries, at Aloma Church in Winter Park, Florida. And, for the third time, Mitt Romney won't be in attendance.
Personhood USA has been busy working its model zygote-is-a-person law around the country, most recently in Mississippi. And it has won endorsements from Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, and Ron Paul, who signed the group's pledge. But Romney has neither signed their pledge nor come to their previous events in Iowa or South Carolina.
While Romney has waffled on the question of whether he actually thinks fertilized eggs should be granted the same rights as people, he's at least been consistent in not supporting the explicit demands of Personhood USA. And this has roiled the extreme anti-abortion crowd:
Governor Romney, again expressly invited, has again neglected to notify organizers of his willingness or disinclination to participate.
"Following President Obama's statement celebrating the Roe v. Wade decision – effectively celebrating the deliberate killing of 54 million innocent American citizens – Personhood USA recognizes the urgency of ensuring that we know where our candidates stand,” stated Keith Mason, President of Personhood USA. "We need a president who values life, and will defend the innocent in word and in deed. We certainly don’t need a candidate who cares nothing for the Sanctity of Life, nor one who will join President Obama in celebrating the deaths of millions."
It's quite interesting that Romney, who has struggled to establish his pro-life cred in this primary, has not been willing to bend on this so far.