Former Vice President Mike Pence urged political leaders to “stand without apology” for unborn babies’ right to life in an interview published Thursday at The Hill.

Pence disputed recent claims by former President Donald Trump and others that Republican candidates’ pro-life stance hurt them in the mid-term elections, saying those with strong pro-life values performed better than the candidates who flip-flopped or ignored the issue.

“I think going forward, it’s going to be incumbent on the men and women on our party to stand without apology for the sanctity of human life, to stand on that principle of the unalienable right to life, but also to express compassion for women that are facing crisis pregnancies,” Pence said.

A former Indiana governor and congressman, Pence has a strong pro-life record and frequently speaks about protecting unborn babies from abortion. He lives out his values in his private life as well. He and his family often attend the March for Life, and his daughter Charlotte is a pro-life advocate.

Pence celebrated the overturning of Roe v. Wade last year, calling it perhaps the “most consequential legacy” of the Trump administration. Since the Dobbs v. Jackson ruling in June, 14 states have banned abortions and thousands of babies’ lives have been saved.

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“… to have been part of an administration that gave the American people this new beginning for life is something I’ll cherish the rest of my life,” Pence told NBC host Chuck Todd in November.

Here’s more from Fox News:

Pence’s relationship with Trump deteriorated after he refused the former president’s demands to overturn the 2020 election results. Trump has accused Pence of lacking “courage,” while Pence, when asked about 2024, has consistently said the country is ready for “new leadership” and that Republicans will have “better choices come 2024.”

While the former vice president has not officially announced a 2024 presidential campaign, he has consistently hinted at doing so, particularly as he’s visited early primary states on his book tour.

Pence told The Hill this week that he wants to continue to be an advocate for life, but he is not sure yet about a political run.

“We’re going to continue to listen very intently, and we’ll make a decision I’m sure that in the months ahead about what role we might play, whether it be as a national candidate or as a voice for our conservative values,” he said.

In June, the Supreme Court overturned Roe in a historic victory for life and returned the power to legislate abortion to the people. Because of Dobbs v. Jackson, states may protect unborn babies from abortion for the first time in nearly 50 years. New research estimates state pro-life laws have saved as many as 10,000 unborn babies’ lives since June.

Currently, 14 states are enforcing pro-life laws that ban or strictly limit abortions, and others are fighting in court to do the same. Pro-life advocates expect more states will pass pro-life legislation this year.

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