By Elise Viebeck - 09/06/12 07:13 PM EDT
For weeks, Republicans and Democrats have been exchanging blows over their official stances on the issue. The GOP platform would ban abortion in all cases, while Democrats' would allow it in all cases.
The SBA List ad blasts Obama for voting against the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act as a state legislator in Illinois.
"Is this the kind of leadership that will move us forward?" says the ad's speaker, a woman who says she survived an abortion. "Leadership that would discard the least and the weakest among us?"
Obama came under similar fire from anti-abortion groups during the 2008 campaign. He defended his opposition to the Illinois bill, arguing that the measure sought to undermine Roe v. Wade by giving rights to pre-viable fetuses.
Groups that support abortion rights also said that a companion bill would have harmed doctors by making them criminally liable for any fetus too underdeveloped to survive outside the womb. Abortion opponents say the two measures were separate.
The spot first ran in Missouri to counter the firestorm over Rep. Todd Akin's (R-Mo.) comment that victims of "legitimate rape" rarely become pregnant.
Conservatives argue that the media disproportionately scrutinized Republicans' abortion views in light of the controversy.