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Presidential counselor Kellyanne Conway, who declared she was pro-life while campaigning for Donald Trump, revealed in an article published today that as a teenager, she helped a friend get an abortion — and even helped to pay for it.
She told New York Magazine that even now she is “sympathetic” to any woman who gets an abortion, adding: “Do I know anybody who ever got an abortion?…Well, of course I do. I’ve driven them there. I’ve helped pay.”
At a rally in Washington, D.C. the week after Trump’s inauguration, Conway told an anti-abortion rally in no uncertain terms that, “I am pro-life.”
That reflects the position Trump has also taken in recent years, although earlier in his career he appeared to support the right of women to get abortions if they wished.
In the New York magazine article, Conway was asked if she associates feminism with a hatred of men. She said she has her own brand of “conservative feminism,” which she described as “softer” and “less anti-male” and “less pro-abortion” than the feminism of women who marched in rallies after the Trump inaugural. “I don’t object to other people marching at all,” she said of the women’s marches, “you know, my friends were there.”
Conway also said in the article that she wouldn’t support repeal of “Roe v Wade,” the Supreme Court ruling that made it legal to get abortions. She said she is against abortion as it has been defined by some feminists and Democrats, doesn’t want abortion to be available to “anyone, anytime, anywhere,” and wants people to be “culturally” more sensitive to the “value of life.”
In other words, Conway is a hypocrite who in front of pro-life groups is pro-life, but in her own real life hedges on when and whether abortion is acceptable. Her position would be anathema to many evangelical groups and Republican politicians – including Vice President Mike Pence – who do not condone abortion under any circumstances.
As for helping pay for a friend’s abortion, she waves it off as just something she did then, not something she believes now. “You know,” she said in the article, “when you’re young, you’re thinking about the person, not the issue. We were younger, and I was focused on her, not on the larger public policy.”
So to Conway, the issue is fungible, depending on your age, whether it is happening to a friend, and whether you now work for a President whose positions change to accommodate his politics. That is the definition of hypocrisy.