Skip to comments.Is Waiting For a Constitutional Ban on Abortion Really Pro-Life?
Posted on 11/18/2007 5:27:53 PM PST by Josh Painter
When the nations largest right to life organization endorsed Fred Thompson last week it sparked some criticism of his pro-life record by his disappointed opponents for the Republican nomination. Thompson produced a 100% pro-life voting record during his eight years in the U.S. Senate, yet some in the pro-life community were dismayed by the National Right to Life endorsement decision and see him as squishy on the issue. He believes Roe v. Wade was wrongly decided and should be overturned, but he has also expressed doubts about whether a Constitutional ban on abortion is practical or politically feasible.
Consistent with his Federalist principles, Thompson prefers to allow the states to apply restrictions on abortion should Roe v. Wade get overturned. It is that viewpoint that has evoked outrage from those who claim Thompsons approach is actually a pro-abortion position.
Given the opportunity, there are perhaps thirty states that would impose restrictions on abortion that could dramatically reduce the numbers of unborn babies killed each year... But the practice would come to an end, or face reasonable restrictions, in many places.
The bottom line is that the Thompson approach would actually save lives while the we wont save anybody until we can save everybody plan will result in hundreds of thousands of abortions each year that COULD be prevented. So, which approach is really MORE pro-life? I suspect that the unborn babies in Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, Texas, and numerous other states where voters would support restrictions on abortion would support Thompson and his Federalist approach
if they could. The fact that the nations largest pro-life organization sees the practical, and life saving, value of an incremental approach to abortion policy should be applauded rather than utilized as a political wedge to divide pro-life voters.
(Excerpt) Read more at southernledger.com ...
The liberals have gotten themselves where they are today through incrementalism.
Thompson's federalist approach is constitutionally sound, and it would probably save more babies faster than trying to get a constitutional amendment through -- which can take years and years, even in the best of circumstances, and if opposed by a political faction it may take forever.
So (especially given his 100% voting record) it seems to me that calling Thompson's position pro-abortion is not just a stretch, it's an outright lie.
“probably save more babies faster”
“So (especially given his 100% voting record) it seems to me that calling Thompson’s position pro-abortion is not just a stretch, it’s an outright lie.”
quite a twist of logic there
We shouldn't have to amend the Constitution every time the Supreme Court botches a decision.
Are there any MittWits left to make this into a big argument? If there are, they’ve been awful quiet today.
Is it Pro-Life?
It is if you’re settin’ the stage for the repeal of the laws and court decisions that allow baby killings.
But not if you’re just sittin’ on your hands doing nothing.
Returning the abortion issue to the states is actually a good idea because the states have an important role to play in the amendment process. Any amendment must be ratified by three fourths of the state legislatures before it becomes law.
Great article. It’s a cop out for a candidate to say, “I’m for the HLA” when in reality the President has no role whatsoever in amending the Constitution. That’s like being for apple pie and motherhood. Great, but what are you going to do about it? Republicans have been “for the HLA” for decades, and where has it gotten us? At least Fred has a plan that might actually work.
Fred’s federalist method, given half a chance, will drastically reduce the number of abortions in this country in a way that being “for the HLA” hasn’t.
It also opens up the debate in all 50 states and lets pro-life forces bring the issue to the forefront of peoples’ minds. The specifics of abortion are not something people want to dwell on. Open up the debate, run ads, get the issue out there, and make people confront their consciences. I think we’d likely end up with at least 30 states banning abortion outright with several more restricting it. Then the next logical step would be to use those states as a platform from which to push for a Constitutional ban.
Being “for the HLA” is a great political soundbite, but, pragmatically, it hasn’t worked. Returning the issue to the states will.
No, it’s not. Frederalism will save babies, tilting at windmills for an impossible-to-obtain HLA won’t.
Excellent article, and absolutely right. The Left got a hold on this nation over many decades. They didn’t reach this point overnight. We will not be able to reverse the damage done by the Left overnight.
Let’s do, today, what we can to improve the situation. Then, tomorrow, we will be able to do more. The next, even more.
“Thompson’s federalist approach is constitutionally sound, and it would probably save more babies faster than trying to get a constitutional amendment through”
I believe Thompson is not against a Constitutional amendment, per se. I think the kind of amendment that he would support would remove abortion from federal jurisdiction, while it want not, on its own, make federal “pro-life” mandate. I agree with that approach, from a constitutional and federalist perspective and I believe that social conservatives, primarily protestant and Catholic Christians, would achieve many gains (against abortion on demand), in the states, if federal courts, and particularly the supreme court could not intervene. I think an amendment that simply ends that intervention would serve everyone well.
Anyone willing to look at the 10th Amendment should agree that abortion should never have been a federal issue in the first place.
The most important thing is to convince young women that abortion is immoral, so they make the right "choice." What matters is the fetal body count, not the ideological purity of presidential candidates.
I wonder if pro-life films save more fetuses than pro-life politicians. A film is able to promote the pro-life message in a way that actually changes minds.
By the way, this business of calling Thompson/Giuliani/Romney "pro-abortion" is factually wrong and anti-Republican. None of them wants for abortions to occur, and I very much doubt that electing any of them would increase the fetal body count.
The Republican Platform:
As a country, we must keep our pledge to the first guarantee of the Declaration of Independence. That is why we say the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and we endorse legislation to make it clear that the Fourteenth Amendments protections apply to unborn children.
Neither does John Kerry:
"I oppose abortion, personally. I don't like abortion. I believe life does begin at conception." - John F. Kerry
>>We shouldn’t have to amend the Constitution every time the Supreme Court botches a decision.<<
I’ve been thinking about this.
I believe there is a right to privacy but that it does not include the right to kill your child. (tempting though that me be after the age of 15). Since the right to privacy lives in many parts of the Constitution and congress can’t simply change one part, the Supreme Court needs reverse Roe v Wade. There’s really no other way to clean up the judicial precedents set by the Court in Roe, if you believe like I do.
Now, a different conservative might disagree with me. He may think privacy is not one of the non-enumerated Federal rights. He might need more than simply reversing Row to feel a win - He may feel the Supreme Court needs its scope reduced in one of the two legal ways - law or amendment.
I don’t think its so much that I’m right or that he is right but rather point our points of view are both reasonable depending on whether you think privacy is a Federal right.
This was never the law, anywhere in the US prior to Roe v. Wade, nor in any other common law country.
Abortion has never been punished as murder - never, nowhere.
What you are trying to do is very difficult, because it has never been done.
That’s been the Republican platform since 1984.
Yeah, yeah, I know.
Have they done anything about it?
Why do you think that is?
Because they lack vision.
"Without a vision, My people perish." - Proverbs 29:18
Good for him.
I’ve posted this in a couple of places and it doesn’t seem to get much more than a yawn, even though it’s kinda-sorta an incremental approach.
I believe a fetus is a human being who deserves protection under the law from being killed.
***I do too. That fetus deserves protection extended by the state.
I do wonder if it is biblical to extend full protection to a fetus? I.e. when a man hurts a pregnant woman, hes expected to pay an eye for an eye & a tooth for a tooth. But if the unborn baby is killed, the price is not the same.
Perhaps it is time to consider a 3 (or even 4) tiered system of protection.
Tier 1: Living, viable, late term baby which will not be aborted unless the life of the mother is at stake.
Tier 2: Living, not-yet-viable pre-born human who should have the right to protection and life and a safe womb to which it can attain viability. Cannot be aborted unless there is an open rape case associated with the pregnancy or the life of the mother is at stake.
Tier 3: Living, early stage, not yet viable pre-born human for whom we do not extend the rights of life in this society because of a historical snag where we once considered such tissue not to be a baby. We as a society thought it was best to consider it a private decision. I personally do not believe in Tier3 abortions, but I can understand that there are many who think it is a right to choose at this stage. It may be time to consider a program where the woman declares her pregnancy and intent to abort. Our societal function at this point would be to provide a family that is willing to adopt this baby and to put up this woman for 6-8 months in a safe environment so the baby can grow and maybe the woman can learn some life skills. If our society cannot muster the forces necessary to save this baby, the woman has the sickening right to abort this pregnancy. Time for us to put up or shut up.
With a 3-tiered plan in place, women would stop using abortion as a means of birth control. Millions of lives would be saved. We would extend the right to life to every human that we have resources to save. Unfortunately, if we cannot put up the resources to save the Tier3 babies, we still would have this horrible practice staining our nations soul.
125 posted on 10/08/2007 1:43:20 PM PDT by Kevmo (We should withdraw from Iraq via Tehran. And Duncan Hunter is just the man to get that job done.)
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No, it's because they lack the votes of the people to sustain their alleged position contained in the party platform.
Nah. The problem is that most of them are like many of the people on this site. They like to call themselves pro-life, but aren’t willing to contend for the right to life if it costs them anything personally. And God forbid that the personhood of the unborn, and what that means, should inform their choice of candidates for public office.
“Is Waiting For a Constitutional Ban on Abortion Really Pro-Life?”
Pro life? Yes.
WARNING: If you wish to join, be aware that this ping list is EXTREMELY active.
So, you don’t think FRed’s proposal will work?
I do actually disagree that there is a ‘right’ to privacy. Where do we extend this right? Where do we stop it? If you’re dealing drugs, you’re committing a crime. But if you’re doing it in your bedroom, it’s not? Well, if we’re going to be consistent in how we apply these laws, that would be the case. Your bedroom (or your home) would be your private realm and you’d have a ‘right’ to privacy there.
All of it opens a huge can of worms.
There were other decisions leading up to Roe that helped build the case for a ‘right to privacy’. The Griswold vs Connecticut decision is where the ‘right to privacy’ first came into play involving birth control. That was where the ‘penumbra’ argument first reared it’s ugly head. Again, if you apply this ‘right’ to other things, you come up with things that just plain don’t make sense.
I stand with Hugo Black and Antonin Scalia. There is no right to privacy ANYWHERE in the Constitution.
There is nothing in the constitution to make it a federal issue.
While abortion is wrong and abhorrent the critical error of Roe v Wade was the idea that it was a federal issue.
If we feel it should be a federal issue there are ways to address it such as amending the constitution etc.
As an aside:
Judicial conservatism is about recognizing a can of worms and deciding not to open it.
This brings us to the question of how to close a can of worms once it’s already been opened. There, we begin the long and arduous task of putting each worm back in the can, one at a time, and then closing the can for good. That is how we must approach this issue.
They are tending to their wounds and in one case, a nervous breakdown. It hasn't been a good week for the Rominoids, and the last 36 hours was a waterloo of sorts. But I think a bit of a break and a few spliffs and they will be back in the battle all the better for the rest.
Wars are won by incremental battle victories...we need to remember that in this “war” as well. FRed’s approach is a good battle plan.
Another problem with Mr. Thompson's approach is that overturning Roe versus Wade only by a Supreme Court decision leaves open the possibility that the next president will appoint a different judge who will rule to bring back abortion as a right. Until we have an amendment defining the unborn child as a person, abortion could go back and forth with each change of administration. We aren't ready to pass an amendment at this time, but the idea that an amendment is a bad idea is wrong.
Exactly. We must start small, just like they did. The idea that we can win the last battle, the biggest battle, FIRST, is simply not going to happen.
The incrementalist arguments have their roots in Hegel’s philosophy - which led to Marx, Engels and Lenin.
It works great for evil, but very poorly for good.
You can add poison to a cup of wine incrementally, and make it a poison cup.
But, if you add wine to a cup of poison, you will not end up with a cup of wine. It will still be a poison cup.
The efforts of pro-life organizations (speaking as a decades long member of two major ones and supporter of local pro-life crisis pregnancy centers) to change minds gets very little notice in the general circulation press. The notice they do receive is generally negative in tone (they are “moralistic,” promote abstinence, et cetera, et cetera).
But as to a broader point, the matter of constitutionally banning abortion, I doubt very much that many pro-life activists would support that because occasionally, very rarely but occasionally, abortion is necessary to preserve the life of a pregnant woman. For starters, it would be nice to see Roe overturned, and a declarative finding by the Supremes that there is no “right to abort” in the U. S. Constitution.
As I understand it, Fred wants to overturns Roe and send the issue back to the states. Where it belongs. I believe that has a better chance to save more lives sooner than a Constitutional Amendment would.
There are so many lies that Roe v Wade was based upon, one being that a right to privacy includes a nonexistent right to kill her unborn child, because a woman has a choice to do what she will with her body.
It seems to get lost on these people or they consciously disregard it, that a few choices have already been made by her and the man if she ends up with child, and now there is another life with its own body that she is choosing to destroy.
quite a twist of logic there
I don't think so. To rephase, it would simply be a lie to say that Thompson's position is pro-abortion. Are you saying you disagree with that?
SO WE'RE GOING TO SEND HIM A THANKSGIVING DAY GIFT!
I disagree with what I thought you said. However not with what you really said. Either I misread or your rephrasing helped. Perhaps it was the article that got me confused.
“But, if you add wine to a cup of poison, you will not end up with a cup of wine. It will still be a poison cup.”
Thats very true, but is your analogy? Conservatives keep working for the home run but in the meantime the socialists are getting base hits out the ying yang. So far the score is drastically favoring the socialists.
One sign that you’re in trouble is you they keep doing the same thing day-after-day and are not happy with the outcome; yet you somehow expect it to have a different result the next time you try it.
Very good article and thread. Thanks to all contributors.
“LOL, okay. I thought the article had an obtuse way of saying it, but I think the writers bottom line was that he thinks it is clear that Fred is pro-life. I think.”
I admit to scanning the article. I usually do that to see if I’m interested enough to read it. My first impression was that it was a hit piece based on twisted logic. But I could be wrong.
Simply not workable ,, besides the less than full human references you can quote relating to punishments are all “old testament” and predate any human knowledge of fetal development..
Why is it not workable? ,, Simple ,, the same clinics that fudge conception dates after a quickie ultrasound ,, either up in weeks to get a higher fee or down in weeks to bypass state enacted bans on late abortions will simply take the practice to the extreme and continue to exist in a world without regulation thanks to their protectors , the democRATS.
More like they lack the necessary votes. When the environment is such that there's even an outside chance at getting 2/3 of the House, 2/3 of the Senate, and 3/4 of the state legislatures, then pushing for an HLA makes sense. Until then, it's nothing but a vague promise to something that won't happen.