All Hell Breaks Loose After Trump Says Women Should Be "Punished" For Illegal Abortions

Tyler Durden's picture

Just yesterday, we discussed Donald Trump’s “women problems.”

Although one might fairly question the methodology behind the polls and whether the questions were designed to elicit a certain type of response, it is worth noting that in three separate surveys (NBC, WSJ, and CNN), Trump’s favorability rating with female voters was 27% or less.

Even if one assumes that the polls were inherently biased, there’s probably some truth to the contention that the things Trump has said about women in the past haven’t done anything to help him when it comes to garnering a large percentage of the female vote and may indeed come back to haunt him in a national contest with Hillary Clinton.

Well on Wednesday, in an MSNBC town hall event, Trump was cornered by host Chris Matthews who asked the GOP frontrunner about his position on illegal abortion.

Below, you can find the highlights as compiled by Bloomberg.

  • Host Chris Matthews presses Trump on anti-abortion position, repeatedly asking him, “Should abortion be punished? This is not something you can dodge”
    • “Look, people in certain parts of the Republican Party, conservative Republicans, would say, ‘Yes, it should,’” Trump answers
    • “How about you?” Matthews asks
    • “I would say it’s a very serious problem and it’s a problem we have to decide on. Are you going to send them to jail?” Trump says
    • “I’m asking you,” Matthews says
    • “I am pro-life,” Trump says
    • “How do you actually ban abortion?” Matthews asks
    • “Well, you go back to a position like they had where they would perhaps go to illegal places but we have to ban it,” Trump says
  • Matthews then presses Trump on if he believes there should be punishment for abortion if it were illegal
    • “There has to be some form of punishment,” Trump says
    • “For the woman?” Matthews says; “Yeah,” Trump says, nodding
    • Trump says punishment would “have to be determined”
    • “They’ve set the law and frankly the judges, you’re going to have a very big election coming up for that reason because you have judges where it’s a real tipping point and with the loss of Scalia, who was a very strong conservative, this presidential election is going to be very important,” Trump says
    • “When you say what’s the law, nobody knows what the law is going to be. It depends on who gets elected,” Trump says

Obviously, this was "gotcha" journalism on Matthews' part (once he established that he was referring to illegal abortions he knew he could pin Trump between having to either say women should be punished or that women could break the law with impunity), and as we saw last year with the whole Kurds/Quds Hugh Hewitt debacle, Trump is susceptible to badgering. The other problem here is that it isn't clear that Trump truly believes some of the things he's forced to say as a Republican candidate, which leads to exchanges like that recounted above. "Don't overthink it: Trump doesn't understand the pro-life position because he's not pro-life," a Cruz aid tweeted. Here's Politico with a bit of context:

Trump’s policy idea is a departure from most state abortion restrictions, which don’t impose penalties on the women who get abortions. Typically, any penalties are imposed on the physician who does the procedure.


The anti-abortion movement in recent decades has shied away from the perception that it is “punishing” women for getting abortions. Instead, it has focused on penalties for the physicians who provide them, such as imposing medical or legal restrictions on their practice. In some rare situations, women have faced charges associated with abortions they have attempted on their own.

Having realized this had become a PR fiasco, Trump promptly walked back his comments.

This is a statement released just moments ago, in which the billionaire revises his initial comments, calling the women "victims", and stating it is doctors who should be held legally responsible for performing the illegal act:

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 legally responsible, not the woman. 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.

But by the time the Trump campaign released that statement it was far too late. The media, women's rights groups, pro-abortion groups, as well as all of Trump's political opponents smelled blood. 

"The last person women need to police their health care decisions is someone who sees them not as people, but as ‘fat pigs,’ ‘bimbos’ and ‘disgusting animals,’" Marcy Stech, a spokeswoman for Emily's List, a pro-abortion-rights group said.

Here's the reaction from March for Life:

And from Bernie Sanders:

And here's the Cruz campaign calling Trump a "charlatan":

Expect this soundbite to play on a loop should Trump end up squaring off against Clinton this fall. Speaking of whom:

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Ralph Spoilsport's picture

Beats the hell outta me. Bad "optics" and a potential PR disaster. WTF? Double plus ungood.

JLee2027's picture

So they can't bring it up in the general election, because they already know and all the hysteria has run it's course?


Why did he walk right into his obvious trap?

surf0766's picture

He is an idiot what did you expect.

Mr. Schmilkies's picture

Perhaps, but this was more about a "gotcha" moment for the anti-Trump MSM on an emotional issue than it was about Trump's view on actual more important (IMO) issues. 

Oldwood's picture

Trump is The non-politically correct candidate...remember? HE speaks off the top of his mind. He does not have written responses and teleprompters with the wizard of Oz feeding him pasteurized lines. People understand this and give him the benefit of the doubt. It is not irrelevant but to compare Trump to these other candidates is like comparing a phenom ball player pitted against veteran players. The thing to keep in mind is how well he is doing, how well he is connecting, with none of the professional tutoring and guidance and years of practice lying with a straight face that most of his competition has had. Yes, a lot of it is juvenile, but then again let us recognize the idiocy broadcast on TV that Americans soak up every night. This is a contest between brute force against very calculated "politic-ing".

I think it is important for any of them to win, but I also think that Trump not only wants to win office but for America to win. Everyone else, I think, is in it for power alone and the country , the people, the lies, are irrelevant.

Kirk2NCC1701's picture

Why?  Because the man has NO IMPULSE CONTROL!  

Emotionally he's like a child or a petulant teenager.  Being rich and famous does not alter that fact.

Look, there is "speaking the truth", and there is "Blatant hubris, mixed with presumption".

This attribute makes him DANGEROUS as POTUS, because if simple journalists can provoke and manipulate him, then so can Foreign Powers.  Which makes you wonder how well he'll "negotiate" with international parties.

He's like a damn box of chocolates:  You never know which fucking Trump you'll get.  Diarrhea-mouth Trump, or Executive Trump.

We keep cheering for the Good Donald and every time we think he's turned the corner, he comes back as the Bad Donald.  WTF?  

He should watch for his food and water getting spiked with PSYCHOTROPIC DRUGS.  Seriously.  Because that's how it feels, and that's how he seems to behave:  like a person who gets a clandestine dose of psycho-pharma shots.  (p.s. All classic crime novels have it, so that "The Butler did it")

Normalcy Bias's picture

Thin-skinned and Petulant? How is that any different from what we have now?

McMolotov's picture

It's not, so electing Trump could be, in effect, doubling down on Barry's worst qualities. He might turn out to be the Orange Obama.

Normalcy Bias's picture

Our system of government is totally antiquated. By definition, anyone who thinks they should lead the world are megamaniacal and therefore, mentally ill.

The job is just too big, and too important, to entrust to just one person.

Mr. Schmilkies's picture

In the US, we have a President and his cabinet, plus 535 members of Congress, pls SCOTUS.  And it's still broken. 

TheMeatTrapper's picture

It's broken because everyone has the "right" to vote.

Victor von Doom's picture

That's why the Fed runs the show instead, right?


Mr. Universe's picture

I guess that was your conclusion after watching the exchange? I guess we have differing opinions of what constitutes

"Blatant hubris, mixed with presumption".

Not that the whole thing isn't designed as some sort of deranged reality show.

logicalman's picture

Looking at the US elections makes me want my food and water spiked with psychotropic drugs.

Save me a fortune in beer.

Living in a lunatic assylum might be OK if you don't realise that's where you live.

Unfortunately, for me, that's not the case.


Tall Tom's picture

Living in a lunatic assylum might be OK if you don't realise that's where you live.

Unfortunately, for me, that's not the case.


What makes you so sure?


I hate to be the bearer of some very bad news...but...


YOU ARE living in a lunatic asulum.


Just because you do not realize where you are living, which is evident, that still does not make anything any better does it?

logicalman's picture

That was entirely my point.


Captain Chlamydia's picture

The most prescribed drug in America is...... Abilify. Yes, the US is one big psychiatric asylum.

Oldwood's picture

It is complete speculation based on idyllic hope but this impulsive speech might be exactly what is needed after decades of pontification constituted on known lies. Maybe if leaders heard the truth rather than the typical manipulative lies, shit MIGHT  normalize. America lacks credibility, and even if Trump is a loudmouth, he obviously has managed to win in his endeavors in the past. Maybe it's because he's NOT a liar....maybe.

Max Cynical's picture

Sheesh...could have just said "although I'm pro life, abortion is the law of the land." 

Slomotrainwreck's picture

Why did he walk right into his obvious trap?

ummm ... stupid?

palmereldritch's picture

It could be more of his innate and savant play-making genius. Seriously...he's teflon for a reason...

This isn't the General Election, yet. Plenty of time to tack over to the center with the average drone's MSM conditioned short memory.

However, if the Cruz sex scandal is getting traction and explodes before the convention then there are plenty of Cruz delegates of the fundamental Christian persuasion that will be in play and will find safe harbor with Trump on the first ballot given this emphasis on a Pro Life position.

What looks awkward now is genius in the medium term and forgotten by September.

taketheredpill's picture

Buy Lockheed Martin....


Aubiekong's picture

Well Christians with Cruz he will tell you what you want to hear then do nothing to stop abortions.  With Trump you get an hones answer something Cruz is unwilling to ever do...

shovelhead's picture

An honest answer is one thing.

Committing Hari-Kari on TV is something else.

Dissing the Sacred Vajayjay is verboten.

TeamDepends's picture

Is it? Trump is skewering the sacred cow of feminism, a disastrously divisive cartel-forced plan to destroy the nuclear family, which needs to be tossed in the dustbin of history. Like him or hate him, Donald is forcing a conversation that is long overdue.

conscious being's picture

The intent of the whole show is to keep the GRC going for another day.

Victor von Doom's picture

Which is why it should be done at every possible opportunity. Crushing the special snowflakes out of existance is what America needs, not eternally kow-towing to them.

taketheredpill's picture

He was sooooooo...close.


roadhazard's picture

Trump can't help himself. He loves to eat shoe leather.

DosZap's picture

You don't get it, HE planned this.

He is in this NOT to WIN but to ensure  Then Scunt does.

If we're GOD blessed she will be awaiting trial.

The entire thing is a set up SO blatantly open, esp by the GOP, it's sickening.

EuroPox's picture

Ever met a feminist who wished she had been aborted?  No, me neither.

EuroPox's picture

Really?  Aw, shit!  I always thought a threesome with a lesbian would be fun but if that means 'feminist', she won't keep her mouth shut long enough.

Oldwood's picture

I don't know....self hate runs pretty deep in the progressives. As a matter of fact, the only thing they hate more are non progressives. I believe they want to "suicide" the whole lot.

Victor von Doom's picture

"Ever met a feminist who wished she had been aborted?  No, me neither."

No - but every one I've ever met I wish had been.

minitrue's picture
minitrue (not verified) Mar 30, 2016 4:48 PM

In a related note, Trump said that its okay to torture suspected Terrorists and women who have abortions.

matermaker's picture

On the Democratic side of things. If you strip out the 'superdelegates'[about 480 for Hillary] and look at the popular vote.  Clinton has less than 300 more delegates than Sanders, with over 2000 to go.  Yet, We all see how she has already been crowned.   ....At least until all the legal stuff blows up.

On the Republican side, Trump is about 200 delegates away from 50% at 736 with 943 left.

This means that hovering around 50% of the National Population, so far,  are voting for VERY non-establishment candidates.  Candidates that actually suggest blowing up the entire system and remaking it.  This is not counting the huge number that don't vote at all, because we see the system as already failed.  These are people that at least up until now, have actually believed in even primaries.  The very core followers of the electorial system.

Throughout history, upheaval and revolution was often instigated and directed by a minority of the populus.  Take the American Revolution, for example.

I believe Trump is correct when he says there will be riots.  They changed the rules at the RNC in 2012[rule 40] in order to keep Ron Paul from even speaking.  If both Trump AND Bernie supporters feel they got completely screwed, the snowball won't be stopped.  It very well might be too late to stop it, anyway.  We are talking about people that actually go to political rallies and primaries here.  When those people start calling bullshit, it's all over for those in power. 

Power never conceded anything unless demanded.  It never has. It never will.

Winston Churchill's picture

I'll keep repeating it:

'Power comes from the barrel of a gun'.

Its only wrested by the barrel of a gun as well.

The Little Red Book was required reading at my establishment school.

matermaker's picture

There is something that has changed in the last 15 years or so.  Everyone is a 'reporter' now.  When you see that Brietbart reporter all teary eyed saying "other than my father dying, IT WAS THE MOST TRAUMATIC EXPERIENCE OF MY LIFE!"  Then, people go watch the video of some guy grabbing her by the arm to get her out of the way.

Hearst couldn't tell his reporter, these days, "you provide the photos and I will provide the war..."

When you loose the control of the narrative, you loose control of the will and opinions of the people.  "It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension the truth becomes the greatest enemy of the State."

What is going on now, we have all kinds of narratives being presented by various factions all at once.  The only thing that will ever come of this is social chaos until one narrative is chosen.

doctor10's picture

There will never again be "one narrative" ever again

The USA has regional options other countries don't. At least 50 of them. And the faster they are embraced, which will happen at's expense, the better for the states.

What is happening, in geopolitical history, is the equivalent of the breaking up of the Tower of Babel

Every one sees it as the "loss of control of THE narrative" when it really is the burgeoning of dozens, if not hundreds of at least equally valid narratives.

matermaker's picture

Agreed, doctor10.   After all the centuries of globalization and making the world flat again... the pendelum is starting to shift.  Localized will again rule.   It's happened over an over again on a long cycle.

By the way, you did know that the Tower of Babel was named such after the Babylonian Ziggaurats?   The first half of the Bible was written pretty much exclusively during the Jewish exile there.  That's why a copy doesn't exist before then and most of the older mythologies like the flood were adapted.

conscious being's picture

Doctor - if you squint at my avatar, you will see the Tower of Babel collapsing. I chose the collapsing Tower of Babel because, I agree,  that is where we are headed.

JohninMK's picture

You are on form tonight.

RAT005's picture

Louisianna just changed primary electoral rules in order to give a few more electoral votes (delegates) to Lyin' Ted

o r c k's picture

I'd give the "excuse" and the "distraction" of global war a 99% probability of happening. Actually, it's already started, except for the draft and the nukes.