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Mayor Marty Walsh File

Mayor Walsh and Cardinal O'Malley at Laboure banquet

ABOVE (2016 photo): Cardinal O’Malley with NARAL award recipient Marty Walsh, Mayor of Boston, who recently raised the "transgendered" flag over City Hall, and banned city travel to North Carolina because of that state’s refusal to admit grown men to girls rest facilities. Walsh, in violation of the Bishops’ statement Catholics in Political Life, was Co-Chairperson of a fundraiser at the Archdiocesan affiliated Laboure Center, where this photo was taken. In July, the Cardinal will lead a pilgrimage to Our Lady’s Shrine at Knock, in Mayo, with Marty Walsh. Photo credit: southbostononline.com

ABOVE: “Men for Choice 2016” award recipient, Marty Walsh, Mayor of Boston, shown here at the NARAL Pro Choice Massachusetts event in February. Photo credit: Tania Barthelemy

Once “personally pro-life,” Walsh trumpets abortion rights credentials

By Joshua Miller GLOBE STAFF FEBRUARY 23, 2016

Mayor Martin J. Walsh of Boston recieved a “Men for Choice” award from an abortion rights group, NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts, Monday night at a cocktail reception on Beacon Hill with many top political leaders.

But back in 2001, when Walsh was a Dorchester state representative, he was quoted in the Boston Herald as saying he is “personally pro-life.”

Megan Amundson, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts, said Walsh’s “position has changed over time.”

She explained that the group gives “this award to elected officials who take a real leadership role in protecting reproductive freedom. And he’s done that.”

Walsh, for his part, indicated he has indeed evolved on the issue in an interview with the Globe.

BOSTON GLOBE: Are you still personally pro-life?

MARTIN J. WALSH: I guess, at this point, I don’t even know what the context was in that article. I wouldn’t say I’m personally pro-life. I would just say I’m a pro-choice candidate, I’m a pro-choice mayor, I was a pro-choice legislator. What I mean by “personally pro-life” at the time was, like, I’m personally, my feelings personally, I guess, I believe in life. I don’t even know where I came up with that. But, since that time, as far as a legislator, I’ve always supported and voted for a woman’s right to choose. I’ve always supported legislation for a woman’s right to choose. And as mayor — I ran as an open, pro-choice candidate for mayor. If I ran for any higher office, I’m pro-choice. I would probably never use the word “personally pro-life” ever again.


WALSH: In 2001, that was kind of like a — I think a lot of legislators were trying to figure out where they were going with different things as they were moving forward and I think that you evolve over time. And so what that means: there’s really no such thing as personally pro-life.

GLOBE: There is. There are people who say, you know what, I’m Catholic and my Catholic faith says no to abortion, but, as a public official, I’m not going to do anything to change the status quo.

WALSH: Yeah, but I think you can get criticized for that statement today. In 2001, you would get criticized, but it was a little different. It’s like evolution. Things change over time. I think there’s clear lines today.

GLOBE: So you would no longer characterize yourself as “personally pro-life?”

WALSH: Yeah, I wouldn’t say that.

ABOVE: 2014 Cardinal Cushing Award being presented to Marty Walsh, Mayor of Boston, by the Society of Saint James the Apostle. According to their web site, for more than twenty-five years “the Society has recognized notable figures from the Boston area for their humanitarian and philanthropic efforts by presenting them the Cardinal Cushing Award.”