GOP Candidate Condemns Abortion for Rape Victims, Says Fetus Could Be 'Next President'

Garrett Soldano, a Republican candidate running this year to become Michigan's governor, has said he opposes abortions for sexual assault survivors who become impregnated by rape. Part of his reasoning was that such a child could one day become the next president.

Soldano made his comments during a Monday interview with April Moss on the right-leaning media outlet Real America's Voice. In the interview, Soldano mentioned that one of his mentors who was adopted later found out that they had been conceived when his mother was gang-raped in a subway station by "five guys."

"It kind of like tore out his heart when he found that out, but then he started to really appreciate and understand what his birth mother went through," Soldano said. "She had the courage to deliver him. And ... since he was delivered, he has helped thousands of people be better versions of themselves."

He then said he wanted to start creating a culture that inspires women to know how "heroic" and "unbelievable" they are, "that God put them in this moment."

"They don't know," he said, speaking of such women, "that little baby inside them may be the next president, may be the next person that changes humanity, may get us out of this situation may be in the future. We don't know that," Soldano added.

"We must always, always protect that [fetal] DNA and allow it to have a voice," Soldano said during the interview.

Soldano's campaign website touts himself as a "proud Catholic" and lists the "right to life" as one of his top campaign issues.

"I will do everything in my power to protect life and push back against the abortion lobby in Lansing and President [Joe] Biden's radical anti-life agenda," his website says. "Abortion providers shouldn't receive our hard-earned tax dollars. Pregnancy centers and organizations that help mothers choose life need our support."

Newsweek contacted Soldano's campaign for comment.

In response to Soldano's remarks on Moss' program, Ron Owens, the political director for the re-election campaign of current Democratic Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, wrote, "Absolutely disgusting and dangerous comments ... Unfortunately, he's not the only one with extreme views like this ... every candidate in the GOP primary has said they will undermine a woman's right to choose."

Only 1 percent of people obtain abortions because they became pregnant through rape, according to the Guttmacher Institute, an abortion-rights group that researches reproductive health. Nearly 77 percent of U.S. residents believe abortion should be legal in the first trimester in cases of rape or incest, according to a 2018 Gallup poll.

In June 2021, Moss, who then worked as a CBS weather reporter, announced live on air that she would sit down with the controversial, conservative-funded journalism enterprise Project Veritas for a discussion about the "discrimination" she had faced at her news station.

The news station later said that she had been fired after refusing to observe COVID-19 precautions.

Update (2/3/22, 6:30 p.m.): The description of Project Veritas has been edited to more accurately reflect the organization's identity.

Garrett Soldano Republican abortion rape god president
Garrett Soldano, a Republican candidate running to become Michigan's governor this year, has said that women who get pregnant by rape shouldn't abort because their fetuses may grow up to become president. In this photo, a silhouetted pregnant woman puts a hand to her head while taking a breather in the sunset. globalmoments/Getty