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Ivanka Trump says she’s pro-life, taking side on abortion for the first time

US president’s daughter, who models herself as a figure for women’s empowerment, takes stance in culture war issue, saying ‘parenthood affected me in a profound way’

Ivanka Trump, daughter and adviser to US President Donald Trump, removes her mask as she takes the stage before a campaign event in Sarasota, Florida, October 27, 2020. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
Ivanka Trump, daughter and adviser to US President Donald Trump, removes her mask as she takes the stage before a campaign event in Sarasota, Florida, October 27, 2020. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

JTA — Ivanka Trump said in an interview that she is “unapologetically” pro-life, taking a side for the first time in the culture wars over abortion, an issue that Jewish law does not take a definite stand on.

“I respect all sides of a very personal and sensitive discussion, but I am also a mother of three children, and parenthood affected me in a profound way in terms of how I think about these things,” Trump told Real Clear Politics on Thursday.

Trump, who underwent an Orthodox Jewish conversion before marrying Jared Kushner, had never expressed a firm opinion on abortion. She has modeled herself as a figure pushing for women’s empowerment around the world, and some commentators wondered if she was at odds with her father’s presidential administration on the issue.

Jewish law does not consider a fetus a full person and does not claim that life begins at conception — a tenet present in Christian religion.

The life of the mother is paramount in Jewish law, but there are differences among Jewish denominations — and even within the denominations — as to what constitutes a threat to the mother’s life.

A White House aide told Real Clear Politics that “A huge driving part of” Ivanka’s willingness to speak out “is where the Democratic Party has gone.”

What that means is not clear, but the political news site links to a New York Times story outlining how Democratic presidential candidates in the past campaign cycle expressed more fervent pro-choice views than ever, including supporting the right to late-term abortions.

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