By Dave Andrusko
Once upon a time pro-abortion editorial pages, such as the Richmond [Va.] Times-Dispatch, could console themselves with the illusion that Democrats really did sort of, kind of actually believe that abortion should be “safe, legal and rare.” As many of our readers will recall this was the rhetorical flourish pro-abortion to the hilt President Bill Clinton dreamt up to mask his extremism.
Who knows, somebody in the Democrat Party somewhere may actually have subscribed to the “necessary evil” formulation, but if so it was “A long time ago in a [political] galaxy far, far away…”
I mention this because the campaign of Hillary Clinton, whose position on abortion is so extreme she makes her husband look like a moderate, has floated a rumor that Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine could be her vice president. As a Times-Dispatch favorite, the editorial page went out of its way today to paint him as a flaming moderate on abortion.
Under the headline, “Yay, abortion?,” the editorial tells the reader, “This newspaper has long held that although abortion is always unfortunate, government should butt out.” But, alas, the ground has not only shifted underneath the feet of abortion apologists such as the Times-Dispatch, a hole has opened up so large it has wallowed them up in the process.
It’s one thing for NRL News and NRL News Today to point out how far away from the public Democrats now are on abortion. It’s another for those who consider themselves “pro-choice,” who see abortion as “a necessary evil” to lament the party’s shift left.
Tracing the movement in the party’s platforms, the editorial charges that “all nuance and ambiguity were gone” in the 2012 platform:
“The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy,” the platform said. The only reference to the frequency of abortion was an acknowledgment “that health care and education help reduce the number of unintended pregnancies and thereby also reduce the need for abortions.” But there was no suggestion that abortion should be, as Bill Clinton used to say, “safe, legal and rare.”
Of late, a “necessary evil” has become an unmitigated good.
These days more and more on the left contend that abortion is not only a necessary evil but a wonderful thing. “I am pro-abortion, not just pro-choice,” goes a piece in Salon. “Abortion is great,” according to a straight-faced, non-ironic article in Slate. The L.A. Times touts having “No regrets: Reclaiming abortion as a force for social good.” And so on.
What the editorial doesn’t mention, that we have, is what will be in the 2016 platform.
Writing in the Washington Post, David Weigel quoted from the platform:
We will continue to oppose — and seek to overturn — federal and state laws and policies that impede a woman’s access to abortion, including by repealing the Hyde Amendment … we support the repeal of harmful restrictions that obstruct women’s access to health care information and services, including the “global gag rule” and the Helms Amendment that bars U.S. assistance to provide safe, legal abortion throughout the developing world.
Translated out of AbortionSpeak and into English, what is the party is going after?
The Hyde Amendment is a provision attached to the annual appropriations bill that covers many federal health programs (including Medicaid). More federal funding means more–lots more–dead babies.
The most conservative estimates are that at least a million people (not to count their descendants) are alive today because of the Hyde Amendment. Testifying before a congressional committee in 2011, NRLC Federal Legislative Director Douglas Johnson said NRLC “believes that the Hyde Amendment has proven itself to be the greatest domestic abortion-reduction law ever enacted by Congress.” (See here.)
The public overwhelming supports not allowing federal funding of abortion.
Getting rid of the Hyde Amendment is a major priority for Hillary Clinton, the pro-abortion presumptive Democratic nominee for President.
The Helms Amendment is a law that prohibits the use of certain types of foreign aid funds for abortion “as a method of family planning.”
Weigel says there are other portions of the platform that Clinton would not agree with. She agrees 100% with the platform on abortion.
Just a word about the remainder of the section on “Reproductive Health, Rights, and Justice.” Here are the first three sentences, which is indicative:
“Democrats are committed to protecting and advancing reproductive health, rights, and justice. We believe unequivocally that every woman should have access to quality reproductive health care services, including safe and legal abortion–regardless of where she lives, how much money she makes, or how she is insured. We believe that reproductive health is core to women’s, men’s, and young people’s health and wellbeing.”
You almost–almost–feel sorry for the likes of the Richmond Times-Dispatch. Having hidden behind the “necessary evil,” as-few-abortions-as-possible mantra, they are confronted with the brutal truth:
Democrats believe in abortion on demand, for any reason for no reason, at home and aboard, paid for using your tax dollars, at any point in pregnancy.