Pete Buttigieg explains why he’s pro-choice

The candidate discusses his stance on abortion and how he plans to gain voters from other Democratic rivals.
5:13 | 02/06/20

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Transcript for Pete Buttigieg explains why he’s pro-choice
support. Bernie has a lot of strong support in these next legs of the race. You say that with you voters don't have to choose between a revolution and the establishment. So only 4% though of Bernie's backers say you would be their second choice candidate, only 4%, and we know how the Bernie bros are. How are you going to convince them you're enough of the revolution they might be looking for? My message is that I would be the most Progressive president we've had in a half century, and that this is personal for me. Look, a lot of this frustration is based on the failure of the economy and the political system we have to really speak to so many people who look at this president and say, hey, the economy is great and just look at the is stock market and are thinking what about my neighborhood, what about my kitchen table. And that's all great but we're counting the wrong things right now. When I'm president we're not going to measure the performance of the economy by the stock market. We're going to measure it by the income growth of the 90%. A good economy is one that's working for all of us. Well Bernie is talking about free education. I mean, it seems to me like young people are in debt. They're in tremendous debt, and he's speaking their language. And I'm offering a way to solve those problems and at the same time leave our country less polarized and divided than it is look at where we are as a country. It is frightening how divided this country is. At the very moment when actually, remarkably, even though you wouldn't know it looking on the floor of the senate, there's an American majority right now that wants these things to happen, even in conservative states. They want to see a higher wage, paid family leave, support a woman's right to choose, support doing something about climate, acting on gun violence. These are positions that we can bring Americans together around. Why at that moment would you want to blow up that majority. Health care, we could -- my plan will make sure there's no such thing as an uninsured American. The difference is I don't think we should force everybody onto the public plan because if I'm right and we Progressives are right that that plan will be the best one, everybody will pick it anyway. If we're wrong we are going to be glad we didn't kick people off their old plan. It puts a little humility into the policy. I think something I think most folks and independents -- and we're seeing many independents and future former Republicans are coming to our events and supporting us which is exactly how we're going to win. It's not enough to club people over the head and hope we just manage to get this president out. We have to send trump and trumpism into the history books and shock waves big enough to finally reunite senate Republicans with their conscience. Mayor Pete, I respect you and I think you're a really interesting politician. Brit hum said that you're the most talented politician up and rising. I agree with him. And I actually think you understand the middle of the country, probably because of where you're from. I saw an interview you did on a radio show talking about abortion and I think this got a lot of play in conservative circles where you were talking about -- this is your quote -- there's a lot of parts of the bible that talk about how life begins at breath. We can interpret that differently. In my circles it was passed around because I think the interpretation from pro life people like me was that you meant a baby actually being born and there's a lot of controversy with governor Northam and what it means and what time a woman should be able to have an abortion. I wanted you to clarify because I found that statement to be pretty radical. I'm just pointing to the fact that different people will interpret their own moral lights and for that matter interpret scripture differently. But we live in a country where it is extremely important that no one person has to be subjected to some other person's interpretation of their own religion. I know we're not going to agree -- Partial birth abortion was coming up -- like I said, governor Northam, it was a huge controversy when he was running for governor. People, pro lifers and Democrats want to know where your line is. My point is it shouldn't be up to a government official to draw the line. It should be up to the woman. If I woman wanted to invoke infant size after a baby was born, you would be okay with that? Think about the situation. If this is a late term situation, then by definition it's one where a woman was expecting to carry the pregnancy to term. Then she gets the most perhaps devastating news of her life chblth. We're talking about families that may have picked out a name, maybe assembling a crib and they learn something, excruciating, and are faced with this terrible choice and I don't know what to tell them morally about what they should do. I just know that I trust her decision isn't going to be any better because the government is commanding her to do it. I respect that.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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