By Dave Andrusko
Not a bad way to start the day. Pro-abortion Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nv.) announces that he will not seek another term—that the 75-year-old will hang up his spikes after the 2016 election.
I use the baseball metaphor because it is one Reid employed this morning. He dreamed of patrolling center field, he said, “But the joy I’ve gotten with the work that I’ve done for the people of the state of Nevada has been just as fulfilling as if I had played center field at Yankee Stadium.”
I am old enough to remember the old Yankee Stadium. The dimensions were mammoth, nowhere greater than in center field where it was 500 feet to straightaway center. Sportswriters referred to it whimsically as “death valley,” the place where fly balls went to die.
Well, when Reid was Senate Majority Leader, pro-life legislation, like baseballs hit to center in the old Yankee stadium, invariably wound up in death valley. One such example was the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which passed the House of Representatives 228-196 on June 18, 2013, but never got a vote in the Senate.
No how, no way under Reid’s watch was the Senate ever going to hold a hearing, let alone vote, on such a bill. Why? For the same reason Reid smothered so many bills: he didn’t want his fellow Democrats to have to vote on a bill that the American people supported but Reid and his pro-abortion Democratic colleagues did not.
Even more so with the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. Reid did not want to hear anything about the extensive evidence that unborn children have the capacity to experience pain, at least by 20 weeks fetal age. (See www.nrlc.org/abortion/fetalpain and also www.doctorsonfetalpain.com.)
The last thing Reid wanted was for the Senate to hear the science behind the findings in the bill, as was the case at a May 23, 2013, House subcommittee hearing.
There will be plenty of time to talk about possible leadership successors with his caucus and about which candidates, Democrats and Republicans, will slug it out in 2016. Suffice it to end with this.
The abortion lobby had no more reliable (and often crafty) ally than Reid, although the news media often misidentified him as an abortion foe.
“Reid is one of the pro-abortion movement’s strongest assets in Congress,” Douglas Johnson, NRLC’s legislative director, has said. “He has employed the full powers of his leadership offices to do the bidding of abortion lobby on all of the issues most important to them.”
Reid “votes with the pro-life side only on less important matters or when the issue is already decided and his vote does not matter,” Johnson added.
Reid was a demagogue’s demagogue and in love with the idea of limiting free speech, i.e., criticism of incumbents. Particularly irritating was that the more unpleasant his assault on opponents, the more injured the tone he adopted if they dared to respond.
Fellow pro-abortion Democrat President Barack Obama said today the Senate “will not be same” without Reid.
For that we can only say “amen.”