5 things to know about Republican presidential candidate Doug Burgum

Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of Susan B. Anthony List, speaks during a press conference at the Marriott Marquis Hotel, June 21, 2016, in New York City. | Drew Angerer/Getty Images
1. Burgum faces criticism from pro-life group for saying abortion is a states’ rights issue

During his appearance at the first Republican presidential debate on Aug. 23, Burgum defended his pro-life credentials, describing himself as a “pro-life governor of a very pro-life state” and cited his approval of a six-week abortion ban in North Dakota as consistent with the values of the voters in his state. At the same time, he shared his belief that “we should not have a federal abortion ban.”

“The reason why we shouldn’t is very simple,” he said. “It’s the 10th Amendment in the Constitution. In the Constitution, which the states created the federal government, not the other way around. It says that there were certain duties allowed to the federal government delegated to them by the states. The rest are left to the states, more importantly, or to the people.”

Burgum added: “We need to get back to freedom and liberty for the people in this country, and … we can’t have Republicans who fight for 50 years for this great cause to return it back to the states and then the next day they turn around and go, ‘No, the feds should do that.’ Because the feds are stepping into people’s lives. They’re stepping into people’s businesses over and over. If we say that the feds should be in on this one, where do we stop?”

While Burgum identified the states as where abortion policy “should be” decided, the head of a national pro-life organization disagreed. In a statement, Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America President Marjorie Dannenfelser declared that “the position taken by candidates like Doug Burgum, that life is solely a matter for the states, is unacceptable for a nation founded on unalienable rights and for a presidential contender.” 

Ryan Foley is a reporter for The Christian Post. He can be reached at:

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