Cain: ‘I Do Not Agree With Abortion Under Any Circumstances’

By Terence P. Jeffrey | October 16, 2011 | 1:47 PM EDT

Herman Cain appearing on NBC's "Meet the Press" (NBC photo)

( - Appearing on NBC’S “Meet the Press” today, Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain said he believes that life begins at conception and that he does not agree with abortion “under any circumstances.”

Cain then elaborated that he did not support exceptions that would allow abortion in cases of rape and incest but did believe it was up to a family to decide what to do if the life of the mother was at stake.

“What about abortion?” host David Gregory asked Cain. “You want to overturn Roe v. Wade. Could you support or condone abortion under any exceptions at all?”

If the player does not load, please check that you are running the latest version of Adobe Flash Player.

“I believe in life from conception and I do not agree with abortion under any circumstances,” said Cain.

“Exceptions for rape and incest?” asked Gregory.

“Not for rape and incest, because--” said Cain.

“What about life of the mother?” asked Gregory, interrupting.

“Because if you look at rape and incest,” Cain said, continuing his thought, “the percentage of those instances is so miniscule that there are other options. If it’s the life of the mother that family is going to have to make that decision.”

Gregory then said: “Would you condone abortion if the life of the mother were—”

“That family is going to have to make that--,” Cain said.

“You won’t render a judgment on it?” asked Gregory.

“That family is going to have to make that decision,” said Cain.

The latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll on the Republican presidential campaign, released this week, showed Cain leading the field at 27 percent, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney at 23 percent, Texas Gov. Rick Perry at 16 percent, Rep. Ron Paul at 11 percent, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich at 8 percent, Rep. Michele Bachmann at 5 percent, former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman at 3 percent, and former Sen. Rick Santorum at 1 percent.