MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Donald Trump is fighting to convince a skeptical Republican Party he can improve his standing among women, even as he takes back an explosive comment about abortion and attacks the credibility of a female reporter police say was illegally grabbed by the GOP front-runner’s campaign manager.
It took Trump’s campaign just hours to backtrack Wednesday after he said that should abortion become illegal, women who undergo the procedure should face “some sort of punishment.”
The plan sparked an immediate backlash from both sides of the debate, prompting Trump to release two statements clarifying his position. The second said only those who perform abortions would be “held legally responsible, not the woman.”
Frustrated Republicans are privately grappling with fears about Trump’s impact on their party’s appeal among women and young people.