WASHINGTON, Dec. 4 (UPI) -- Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the mother of a Down syndrome son, has been embraced as a model in the anti-abortion movement, leaders say.
Greg Mueller, a veteran anti-abortion political insider, said Palin shows anti-abortion supporters "that there's great joy in special needs kids --and that we shouldn't be aborting them," Politico reported Friday.
Palin, 45, on a book-signing tour for her memoir, "Going Rogue," has brought along 19-month-old Trig as she travels from book store to book store -- a move that has generated positive feedback, said Jason Recher, a former campaign aide.
"There's a lot of people who come through the line to see Trig instead of to see her," Recher said.
Palin's increased focus on abortion issues was driven by the response to Trig during the final days of John McCain's presidential campaign when she was his running mate, Recher told the Washington publication.
"It was something we were all surprised by -- the reaction to Trig and the reaction to the special needs portfolio that McCain had given her during the campaign," he said.
Palin is just plain different from other men and women in politics, said Marjorie Dannenfelser, the president of the Susan B. Anthony List, which supports anti-abortion candidates.
"She had the audacity in the eyes of the abortion rights world to actually have this child, and then has the audacity to bring him along with her and feature him as a centrally valued person in their family," Dannenfelser said.