Hillary Clinton: Anti-abortion women can still be feminists

Story highlights

  • Hillary Clinton made her first appearance as a 2016 candidate on "The View" Tuesday
  • The former secretary of state explained her positions on abortion and feminism
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New York (CNN)Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton explained her position on abortion and feminism Tuesday, arguing that while she supports abortion rights, women who don't can "absolutely" be considered feminists.

In a comment that rankled both conservatives and abortion activists, Clinton said during an interview with NBC's "Meet The Press" Sunday that "the unborn person doesn't have constitutional rights."
    Clinton stood by that statement during her first interview on ABC's "The View" as a 2016 candidate.
    "Under our law that is the case," the former secretary of state said. "I support Roe v. Wade because I think it is an important statement about the importance of a women making this most difficult decision with consolations by whom she chooses, her doctor, her faith, her family."
    Republican front-runner Donald Trump said last week that there should be a form of "punishment" for women who get abortions if the procedure was outlawed, a comment that was widely criticized by Democrats and Republicans alike. Trump later walked back his comments, saying the punishment should be on the abortion provider.
    Clinton said Tuesday that she has "no problem with people making the case, look, here is the best choice or here is a better choice" on abortion, but added that when "the government gets involved and you say it is illegal and women and doctors are criminals, that is way too far."
    Clinton has made women's rights -- particularly abortion rights -- a central plank to her presidential campaign. She mentions her defense of Planned Parenthood and Roe v. Wade in nearly every stump speech and has even hit Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, her Democratic opponent, for downplaying the issue.
    Paula Faris, one of the show's more conservative hosts, pressed Clinton about whether a women who is anti-abortion could be considered a feminist.
    "Absolutely," Clinton said. "Of course you can be a feminist and be pro-life."
    Clinton was on the show during a day of campaigning in New York, ahead of the state's April 19 primary. Clinton will hold a town hall in Brooklyn on Tuesday afternoon and also has an evening fundraiser scheduled.
    "I just feel so happy when I am in New York," Clinton said of campaigning in the state she moved to in 2000.
    There were lighter moments during Clinton's appearance on the midday show, as well.
    Clinton told the hosts that she gets "separation anxiety" when she doesn't see her granddaughter, Charlotte, often enough, but added that FaceTime, the Apple video chatting app, "was invented for grandparents."
    Clinton was also asked about her favorite music, to which she name checked Katy Perry and Demi Lovato, two high-profile campaign supporters. She also said she listens to anything by Adele.
    And the hosts also asked Clinton about her celebrity crush.
    "I do have a number of them," Clinton said before naming George Clooney, the 54-year old actor.
    "I will stop there," Clinton said her list, "but he is a pretty big figure on my celebrity crush list."
    Clooney is also a Clinton supporter, who is hosting a fundraiser for the candidate.