Sen. Barack Obama is not mincing words when it comes to distortions anti-choice lobbyists from the National Right to Life Committee and others are making about his record in the Illinois Senate. The following is from an interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network’s David Brody:
Brody: Real quick, the Born Alive Infant Protection
Act. I gotta tell you that’s the one thing I get a lot of emails about
and it’s just not just from Evangelicals, it about Catholics,
Protestants, main — they’re trying to understand it because there was
some literature put out by the National Right to Life Committee. And
they’re basically saying they felt like you misrepresented your
position on that bill.
Obama: Let me clarify this right now.
Brody: Because it’s getting a lot of play.
Obama: Well and because they have not been telling
the truth. And I hate to say that people are lying, but here’s a
situation where folks are lying. I have said repeatedly that I would
have been completely in, fully in support of the federal bill that
everybody supported – which was to say –that you should provide
assistance to any infant that was born – even if it was as a
consequence of an induced abortion. That was not the bill that was
presented at the state level. What that bill also was doing was trying
to undermine Roe vs. Wade. By the way, we also had a bill, a law
already in place in Illinois that insured life saving treatment was
given to infants.
So for people to suggest that I and the Illinois medical society, so
Illinois doctors were somehow in favor of withholding life saving
support from an infant born alive is ridiculous. It defies commonsense
and it defies imagination and for people to keep on pushing this is
offensive and it’s an example of the kind of politics that we have to
get beyond. It’s one thing for people to disagree with me about the
issue of choice, it’s another thing for people to out and out
misrepresent my positions repeatedly, even after they know that they’re
wrong. And that’s what’s been happening.
Brody: I wanted to give you a chance to clear it up.
Obama: I appreciate it.
Brody: Thank you so much.
ABC’s Jake Tapper reminds readers of his blog, Political Punch, that this story has been floating around for quite some time. It was even a source of concern, for different reasons, for some Democratic voters in the heated primary against Sen. Clinton.
So why is it getting such heated attention now? Jerome Corsi’s recently released, and widely discredited, book once again fans the flame of the lie, is one reason. Another is that the anti-choice community elevated the issue right before the Saddleback Forum to intensify focus on abortion with increased evidence that Obama is leading in the polls among all faith groups except Evangelicals, where he is expected to do better than other recent Democratic Presidential candidates.
In fact these same issues were raised in his race for the Senate in Illinois, and voters there heard the charges, looked at the facts, then voted to send him to Washington.
The Associated Press is also reporting that another anti-choice political action committee is planning a major ad campaign against him on abortion issues but fears;
"they will be prosecuted for breaking federal rules that restrict
fundraising and advertising by political action committees, or PACs. The Real Truth About Obama wants to post ads on its Web site and on the
Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity talk shows in key states during the
"electioneering communication" blackout period 60 days before the
general election. The ad features an "Obama-like voice" saying he would
make taxpayers pay for all abortions, ensure minors’ abortions are
concealed from their parents, appoint more liberal Supreme Court
justices and legalize the late-term procedure that abortion opponents
call "partial-birth" abortion.
As Sen. Obama said at the Saddleback Forum, there are some issues on which we cannot argue, "because
that is a core issue of faith for you", or as Pastor Warren said, we should be able to "disagree without demonizing."
Obama’s strong statement is not likely to quiet lobbyists who want to use the most extreme language on the most extreme issues to distort reality, but then again, these are the same people who won’t tell you that they want to outlaw contraception as much as they want to outlaw abortion. They know they can’t win the contraception argument so they get people to focus on abortion, and on the most extreme aspects of that, while moving an anti-contraception agenda quietly in the Bush Administration.