HARRISBURG, Pa., Aug. 27 (UPI) -- Pennsylvania Republican U.S. Senate candidate Tom Smith said Monday fetuses conceived out of wedlock and by rape both need to be protected from abortion.
In both instances, Smith, who is seeking to unseat Democratic incumbent Bob Casey, said "a life is a life, and it needs to be protected," The Philadelphia Inquirer reported.
Following an appearance at a Pennsylvania Press Club luncheon, Smith was asked his position on abortion, which he answered he opposes without exception.
Asked how he would counsel a daughter or granddaughter to keep a child of rape against her will, Smith replied that he "lived something similar to that with my own family and she chose life, and I commend her for that."
He said the situation in his family was not a rape, but "having a baby out of wedlock."
Asked whether that was similar to rape, Smith said: " No, no, no, but well put yourself in a father's position. Yes, I mean it is similar."
Smith later stressed he "didn't even come close to" comparing a pregnancy from rape to an out-of-wedlock one and he "absolutely" does not condone rape.
"But I am pro-life period. A life is a life, and it needs to be protected," Smith said.