Ben Carson tells anti-choice group: Abortion is like slavery, not ‘an issue of women’s rights’
Ben Carson speaks at The Gift of Life Banquet in Nevada (screen grab)

Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson asserted on Monday that abortion was not an issue of women's rights, and that supporting a woman's right to choose was like supporting slavery.

Speaking at "The Gift of Life Banquet" fundraiser for First Choice Pregnancy Center in Las Vegas, Carson argued that the "culture of death" was accepted in America because of "peer pressure."

"Someone has tried to make this into an issue of women's rights," the GOP hopeful told the crowd. "What about the baby? You know, it's one of the most sacred relationships in the universe, a mother and that child inside of her. How have we become so distorted that we have managed to convince women that that baby inside of her is her enemy and that she has a right."

Carson explained that he had lived in liberal cities like Baltimore and Detroit, which he called a "bastion of Democratic thought."

"And I never actually liked the idea of abortion even though I was a liberal Democrat," he said. "But I did believe in choice. I said, you know, I personally wouldn't agree with it but anybody else can do what they want. I mean, why would I interfere with somebody else's choice?"

The former neurosurgeon noted that he change his mind about abortion after realizing it was like "slavery."

"I was thinking about slavery and I was thinking about the abolitionists, and I said, what if the abolitionists had said, 'I don't believe in slavery but anybody else can do whatever they want'?" Carson declared. "Where would we be today?"

"Slavery is a moral issue and so is abortion," he insisted. "It's a moral issue that we're dealing with."

Watch the video below.