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Sean Hannity Helps Fred Thompson Hide His Pro-Choice Past

Reported by Ellen - June 6, 2007 -

Hannity & Colmes gave Fred Thompson the first half of its show last night (6/5/07) for a softball interview with questions from Sean Hannity, only. Near the end, Hannity made a show of confronting Thompson with some controversies in his past – his votes on McCain Feingold, Bill Clinton’s impeachment and abortion. But when Thompson cleverly ducked his pro-choice past, Hannity answered his own question in a favorable way for Thompson and moved on. With video.

Hannity told Thompson, “I’ve examined your record THOROUGHLY (his emphasis) now knowing this interview was coming up. There are three issues come up where people question your conservatism. One is when you checked the box in 1994 when you were running for Senate where the box said ‘abortion should be legal in all circumstances for the first three months.’ That wasn’t your voting record, interestingly. Did you make a mistake checking that box?” (Comment: Notice how Hannity gives him an easy out right at the start.)

Thompson said he didn’t remember “that box,” that it may have been a staff member doing it for him “based on what they thought my position was.” Thompson went on to say that he always thought Roe v. Wade was a wrong decision, that it was “a matter that should go back to the states.” He added, “I think the states should have some leeway. I might vote against one approach but I think the state ought to have it. And I would not be and never have been for a law that says on the state level – if I were back in Tennessee voting on this, for example, that if they chose to criminalize a young woman and…”

Was Thompson about to admit that he is against the criminalization of abortion? We'll never know because Hannity cut him off and finished answering his own question on Thompson’s behalf. “So states' rights for you.”

“Essentially,” Thompson answered. “Federalism. It’s in the Constitution.”

But if Hannity had truly done such a thorough research job, why didn’t he come up with a recent post from the American Spectator blog reporting that in 1994 Thompson was clearly and definitiveely pro-choice? According to reporter Philip Klein, Thompson was asked to clarify his position on abortion during an interview published in the July/August issue of Republican Liberty, the official newsletter of the Republican Liberty Caucus. Thompson’s reply was, "Government should stay out of it. No public financing. The ultimate decision must be made by the woman. Government should treat its citizens as adults capable of making moral decisions on their own."