(Bloomberg) -- Republican Presidential candidate Nikki Haley said she considers frozen embryos created through in-vitro fertilization “babies,” siding with the Alabama Supreme Court on an issue that resonates with conservative voters three days before South Carolina’s primary. 

“Embryos, to me, are babies,” Haley told NBC News in an interview broadcast Wednesday. In an appearance on the CNN program “King Charles” on Wednesday night, she tempered those remarks.  

Justices on the state’s top court last week recognized unimplanted human embryos as children, ruling  that a state law allowing parents to recover punitive damages for their children’s deaths includes the parents of unborn children, regardless of ability to survive outside the womb. The decision is seen as making it more difficult for people to conceive via fertility treatments.

“When you talk about an embryo, you are talking about, to me — that’s a life — and so I do see where that’s coming from when they talk about that,” Haley said in the interview. 

On CNN, however, she told hosts Gayle King and Charles Barkley that “I didn’t say that I agreed with the Alabama ruling. The question that I was asked is, ‘Do I believe an embryo is a baby?’ I do think that if you look in the definition, an embryo is considered an unborn baby, and so yes, I believe from my stance that that is.”

“Our goal is to always do what the parents want with their embryo it is there’s so any physician that is in control of those embryos they owe it to those people, to make sure they protect that embryo and that they do with that embryo what those parents want done with that embryo,” Haley said.

The former South Carolina governor — who shared that her son, now 22, was conceived via artificial insemination — has previously stated that she’s “unapologetically pro-life.” During last year’s Republican primary debates, Haley said states should decide their own abortion policies and downplayed the idea of a federal ban.

As governor, she signed a bill that banned abortion at 20 weeks with no exceptions for rape or incest.

Haley trails the GOP frontrunner — former President Donald Trump — by 25 percentage points in her home state, according to the RealClearPolitics polling average. The Palmetto State, where religious conservatives make up a significant portion of the electorate, holds its primary Saturday. 

While she’s vowed to stay in the race at least through Super Tuesday on March 5, Haley’s path to the nomination would be tough to chart if Trump were to win by a large margin in South Carolina, building on his decisive wins last month in Iowa and New Hampshire. 

Read more: Alabama Embryo Ruling Gives Abortion Foes Tool to Expand Fight

Asked about the impact the Alabama decision could have on those seeking IVF treatment, Haley said on NBC, “It’s incredibly personal, it’s incredibly sensitive, and I think that’s the conversation the doctor needs to have with the patient. Let’s never underestimate the importance of the relationship between a doctor and patient when they’re doing any of that.”

--With assistance from Celine Castronuovo.

(Updates with Haley comments to CNN, starting in second paragraph.)

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