Record Number of Anti-Choice Dems Running for Congressional Seats


On Friday, we ran a piece headlined, "Suddenly, Everyone’s Pro-Choice!"

Well, not everyone.  The New York Times today reported that a record number of anti-choice Democrats are running for Congressional seats, often with generous backing of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

Mayor Bobby Bright in Alabama, Kathleen Dahlkemper in Pennsylvania, Jim Esch in Nebraska and nine others are self-identified "pro-life" Democrats who make their opposition to legal abortion part of their campaign pitch. The Times writes, "Representative Christopher Van Hollen, chairman of the Democratic
Congressional Campaign Committee, said the strategy may neutralize the
advantage Republicans have enjoyed on social issues like abortion while
allowing Democrats to emphasize areas of Democratic strength, primarily
jobs and health care."

It may be tempting to see abortion as an obstacle to connecting with socially conservative voters on other Democratic strong suits, but to Kelli Conlin, president of the National Institute for Reproductive Health, “It misses the larger point.”  Conlin told the Times, “The movement to recruit anti-choice candidates ignores the larger reality that this is a pro-choice nation.”

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  • invalid-0

    “Representative Christopher Van Hollen, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, said the strategy may neutralize the advantage Republicans have enjoyed on social issues like abortion while allowing Democrats to emphasize areas of Democratic strength, primarily jobs and health care.”

    Van Hollen is a foolish man if he believes that a congress dedicated to forcing women to carry to term children they do not want and cannot afford to feed is a winning strategy for either party.

  • paul-bradford

    It may be tempting to see abortion as an obstacle to connecting with socially conservative voters on other Democratic strong suits, but to Kelli Conlin, president of the National Institute for Reproductive Health, “It misses the larger point.”  Conlin told the Times, “The movement to recruit anti-choice candidates ignores the larger reality that this is a pro-choice nation.”

     

    What leaders on both sides work hard to ignore is the fact that a majority of Americans feel uncomfortable with either antichoice or proabortion extremists — and the extremists are presiding over the debate.  The majority of people in our country want the number of abortions reduced, and reduced dramatically.  In fact, the majority of people would be happy if NO women requested abortion but there’s no reason to think that the extremists on either side are moving us closer to that point.

     

    We won’t be able to lower abortions as long as abortion rights advocates keep insisting that the unborn aren’t people — just a mass of cells.  But guess what?  We live in the Twenty First Century.  It’s no longer possible to frighten or bully women into keeping babies they don’t want.  The only way to arrive at respect for the unborn is to begin by respecting the mothers of the unborn.

     

    What has to happen is that we need to build a responsible society where women know they’ve got to care for their children and the society knows it must care for the caregivers.  In such a society unwanted pregnancy would be rarer because, when abortion is no longer viewed as a chance to ‘undo a mistake’ people (both men and women) would take better care to prevent it.

     

    There are two ‘vital rights’, two ‘calls to justice’ that are at stake.  One is a woman’s right to privacy, her right to due process, her right to conrol what happens inside her own body; the other right is the right of our youngest fellow humans to simply live.

     

    The people who are doing most of the talking fall into one of two camps: 1)Those who support maternal rights but deny fetal rights and 2) Those who support fetal rights but deny maternal rights.  When I post on this ‘site I generally advocate for fetal rights (since very few here do); when I post on Pro-Life ‘sites I generally advocate for maternal rights (since very few there do.)

     

    My observation is that too many people are willing to satisfy themselves with half the truth.  We won’t make any progress as long as we’re gridlocked as we are.

     

    Paul Bradford

    Pro-Life Catholics for Choice

  • invalid-0

    Most of your response I agree with-that we need to talk about those areas we agree upon, which includes reducing the need for abortion.
    However, to say that those who choose abortion do so to “undo a mistake” is misleading. It is even more misleading to say that “people” would take better care to prevent pregnancy if they no longer saw abortion as an option.
    There are a number of fallacies in your argument, the first of which is the assumption that “people” become pregnant on purpose, when the truth is that women become pregnant because those who are fertile have unprotected sex (with various degrees of willingness and thoughtfullness) with fertile males. Labeling this as a “mistake” implies that one has a choice, which is what the pro-choice movement is all about. I know of no woman (and there may be a few out there) who DECIDED to become pregnant because she could later undo her “mistake”. Caring for women and girls BEFORE we become pregnant is imperative if we are to reduce unwanted and unintended pregnancies. If society waits until we become caregivers, it is too late.
    And I know of no man (again there may be a few of them too) who impregnate a woman because “they” can later undo the mistake. Your mentioning women, and not men, as caregivers of children seems to imply that men are not, or should not be, children’s caregivers. And herein lies another problem. As long as women alone are viewed as the only ones who have “got to care for their children”, (your words), we have a problem with women not having a choice as to whether to bear those children.
    We need to respect women and girls whether we are pregnant or not. The best way to do this is to respect our right to choose what is best for ourselves and any children we choose to have. Give us the tools we need to make informed decisions and the power to use those tools.

  • invalid-0

    How did the anti-choice Dems do, last Tuesday? How did their win/loss percentages compare to pro-choice Dems and the party overall (which includes, I presume, uncommitted)?
    Something for me to know when I work on Jon Corzine’s campaign, next year: does anyone dispute his pro-choice record?