Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., on Sunday attempted to clarify the confusing comments he made about abortion this past Thursday during the first Republican debate.
“I’ll support any legislation that reduces the number of abortions,” he told Meet the Press hot Chuck Todd. “And there are those that have that exception. What I’ve never done is said I require that it must have or not have exceptions.”
The exceptions he referred to were in the case of rape, incest or the health of the mother.
During last week’s debate, Rubio was asked about his decision to support legislation for abortion that contained exceptions for rape and incest. He responded, “I have never said that and I have never advocated that.”
In his “Meet the Press” interview, Rubio ultimately said that while a woman has certain rights over her body, he believes in protecting the rights of an unborn child, even though he has sponsored anti-abortion legislation that contained exceptions in the past.
“Listen, you’re 15 years old and you become pregnant and you’re scared and you have your whole life ahead of you and you’re facing this, that is a hard situation,” Rubio said. “I tell people all the time, ‘Don’t pretend this is easy.’ This is a difficult question. But when asked to make a decision between two very hard circumstances, I’ve personally reached the conclusion if I’m going to err, I’m going to err on the side of life, on the side of protecting a human being.”
Rubio said he believes that protecting the life of the mother is an exception that holds “the highest validity.” He also questioned whether medicine has advanced so far that there are “any instances in which only an abortion could save a mother’s life.”
While Rubio said he has supported these bills that contain abortion exceptions in the past, he clarified that this was largely due to the fact that the bills would still limit the total number of abortions performed, which is why he was still for the legislation.
This story originally appeared on NBCNews.com