From the article:
One such instance, he said, was his decision to twice veto legislation written by Republicans to outlaw the procedure opponents call partial-birth abortion. Mr. Clinton said the fight over banning a procedure that he himself opposed was very intense as Republicans sought to build a case for coming elections.Over and over again medical experts have testified that partial-birth abortion is never necessary to save a woman’s life or health.
He said he might have been inclined to sign the measure had advisers found it to be a “close call” on whether it was constitutional and did not require an exception for cases where the health of the mother was at risk — a main point of contention.
But he said his view was bolstered by internal legal opinions that said the Republican measure was flawed without an exception for the health of the mother. His decision to veto the measure was driven home at a White House news conference, he said, when five women spoke agonizingly about undergoing the procedure because of serious risks to themselves and their fetuses.
“The truth is, for a very small percentage of women with a problem it was medically necessary,” Mr. Clinton said. “At least that is what I thought and that is what she thought.”