Saturday, December 20th, 2014

In Context: Santorum on women in combat

Rick Santorum was interviewed by CNN's John King.

This is the latest in our series putting controversial statements in their full context, the comments by Rick Santorum on women in combat.

From CNN's John King USA, Feb. 9, 2012

JOHN KING: OK. Let me, here's another one for you.  A President Santorum might face.  The Pentagon says it's easing roles on women taking a front line role - some front line roles in combat, as medics, as people involved in communications, perhaps opening the door to a broader role, ultimately, for women in combat.

A good idea or a bad idea?

SANTORUM:  I don't - you know, look, I - I want to create every opportunity for women to be able to serve this country.  And - and they do so in an amazing and wonderful way.  And they're a great addition to the - and have been for - for a long time - to the - to the armed services of our country.

But I - I have - I do have concerns about women in front line combat.  I think that could be a - a very compromising situation where - where people naturally, you know, may do things that may not be in the interests of the mission because of other types of emotions that are involved.

And I think that's probably, you know, it already happens, of course, with - with the camaraderie of - of men in combat.  But it's - but it's - I think it would be even more unique if - if women were in combat.  And I think that's probably not in the best interests of men, women or the mission.

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He elaborated on the remark in an interview with Jonathan Karl of ABC News.