Spot the Extremist: Is It Democrats or the GOP Who Will Shock the Voters on Abortion?

Republican candidates will quote Cardinal Dolan’s gruesome depiction of how late-term abortions are performed to pillory Democrats who voted for this barbaric procedure. 

AP/Mariam Zuhaib
Here’s hoping the new GOP House leadership starts off by reopening the oil and gas spigots. AP/Mariam Zuhaib

Just recently, Republicans and Senator Manchin blocked passage of legislation that, as the New York Times described it, would “enshrine the landmark Roe v. Wade precedent in federal law.” Reporting on that defeat, few news organizations, including the Times, provided a link to the Democrats’ proposed  bill. There’s a reason for that.

While the Times dutifully linked to the leaked draft of Justice Samuel Alito’s decision overturning Roe v. Wade, which has caused borderline hysteria on the left, the paper eschewed guiding readers to the pro-abortion legislation recently approved by 49 Senate Democrats. The Times failed even to mention the name of the bill until the 17th paragraph of its report on the vote, possibly worried that curious readers might research the 29-page legislation on their own.

Why keep the pro-abortion bill under wraps? First, because its expansive abortion rules come wrapped in racism, extolling “reproductive justice” and claiming that “restrictions on reproductive health, including abortion, perpetuate systems of oppression, lack of bodily autonomy, white supremacy, and anti-Black racism.”

Since black women, seven percent of the population, account for roughly 40 percent of abortions performed in our country, some might think that legalizing the procedure is more persuasive of white supremacy, but never mind. 

More importantly, the press might want to downplay the bill because it is a horror that goes way beyond Roe v. Wade. Most offensive, it allows abortion up through nine months of pregnancy, when, “in the good-faith medical judgment of the treating health care provider, continuation of the pregnancy would pose a risk to the pregnant patient’s life or health.”  

The authors do not define what constitutes a threat to the patient’s health. That is left up to the heath-care provider, who can be a “physician, certified nurse-midwife, nurse practitioner, [or] physician assistant.” In other words, someone other than a doctor could accept the patient’s demand for a late-term abortion on the basis that she is depressed or extremely anxious and perform the procedure without a physician present. 

Meanwhile, the bill supersedes all potentially restricting legislation, including the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which allows organizations or persons to refuse to perform abortions on conscience grounds. It also topples any state rules requiring parental notification, or any other demand that might delay the immediate termination of the pregnancy.

Voters will not be pleased. Gallup, which has surveyed opinion about abortions for more than four decades, reported last year that 48 percent of Americans think abortion should be legal only under certain circumstances and 19 percent think it should never be allowed, topping the 32 percent who think it should always be permitted. Even some of the 49 percent who describe themselves as pro-choice think there should be limits placed on the procedure. 

A more recent Pew survey echoed Gallup’s findings, with only 19 percent saying abortion should be legal in all circumstances. A majority — 56 percent — of those in the Pew poll who think abortion should mostly be legal think that minors should be required to obtain parental approval. Where most voters want abortion restrictions depends on the duration of the pregnancy, according to Pew. Some 44 percent of U.S. adults say abortion should be legal at six weeks; at 24 weeks, when a fetus might survive outside the womb, that flips, with 44 percent saying an abortion should be illegal. 

In 2019, New York passed a bill like the one that just failed in the Senate. Timothy Cardinal Dolan noted in an op-ed that the state’s “grisly legislation … eliminates legal penalties on abortionists who allow an aborted baby, who somehow survives the scalpel, vacuum and dismemberment, to die.” 

Late-term abortions are rare, but the very idea is repugnant. Roe allowed abortions up to “viability,” but with the advance of medicine, that has become a moving target, while sonagrams introduce us to living, breathing human beings ever earlier in their existence.

While Democrats will hammer Republicans for opposing a woman’s right to choose, GOP candidates will quote Cardinal Dolan’s gruesome depiction of how late-term abortions are performed to pillory Democrats who voted for this barbaric procedure. 

Republicans can also showcase an Alabama boy, Curtis Means, who was born at a mere 21 weeks of gestation in 2020, a healthy and adorable little boy who has the distinction of being the world’s most premature baby to survive. President Biden has called those in favor of Justice Alito’s opinion “extreme.” Voters may decide those cheering late-term abortions are the real extremists.

________

Correction: Seven is the percentage of the population that is black females; the percentage was given incorrectly in the bulldog edition.


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