Washington—With the Democratic-controlled U.S. House of Representatives having recently voted down the long-standing anti-federal funding of abortions, the Hyde amendment, from an upcoming appropriations measure, former pro-Life Republican governor, Democrat Rep. Charlie Crist, was asked how he evolved from being one of the staunchest anti-Abortion elected officials in Florida to his current position of supporting the controversial reproductive issue.
Shortly before entering the House Chamber on Wednesday to cast votes, Rep. Crist told The Floridian why he changed his view on abortion.
The Floridian: What was the name of the bill in the appropriation where they are getting rid of the Hyde amendment?
Crist: It’s already gotten rid of, and I supported it.
The Floridian: Before when you were running for governor and Senate, you were “pro-Life, pro-Gun Charlie, what changed your mind about the whole Abortion issue?
Crist: I’ve always been laisse-faire about it, really have. I remember as a state senator, I voted against the healthcare bill that was going hurt that.
He’s right. In 1995, then-State Senator Crist voted against the healthcare measure that would have required a 24-hour waiting period for women to obtain an abortion.
"I generally don't like the government telling people what to do," Crist told the Tampa Bay Times. "I believe in individual rights and freedom. That's why I'm a Republican."
Remember this epic video?
Crist: "I am pro-life, I am pro-gun, and I am pro-family, and I am anti-tax and I always have been"
Did Charlie Crist flip-flop on the abortion issue? Does Charlie Crist support Abortion?
No. Yes. Not really. Maybe.
Crist, who is arguably the most effective and historically likable politician in the history of politics in Florida, has always appeared to have wavered or waffled on supporting a woman’s right to choose and being “pro-life.”
The definition of the term “pro-life” is pretty straightforward. It means you are against abortion or euthanasia.
A past Politifact breakdown of Crist’s evolving position on the issue scored him a “Mostly False” rating.
In the story, Crist’s support against abortion as both a state Senator and governor is outlined, and numerous quotes of him claiming to be pro-life are cited, along with citings of him saying he was “pro-choice” or in support of a woman’s right to choose.
Over the years, Crist has always said he does not like the government telling women what to do with their bodies, but at the same time has referred to himself as being both “pro-Choice” and “pro-Life.”
Crist is currently running for governor in Florida and is being challenged by Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried. The winner of that Democratic primary race will face off against staunch pro-Life Governor Ron DeSantis (R).