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November 19, 2006

Let's Talk About Roe

By Neil the Ethical Werewolf

John McCain, he of the 0% NARAL rating, just declared his support for overturning Roe.  As Scott and Lindsay point out, McCain's federalism justification for this is contradicted by many of his other positions, including his support for a Constitutional amendment to ban most abortions.  In addition to McCain's support for teaching intelligent design creationism in the schools, it's another thing to tell your friends about when they start getting all googly-eyed about this supposed moderate. 

This reminded me of something in Ramesh Ponnuru's The Party of Death.  For a long time, conservatives loudly supported large-scale measures like Constitutional amendments and overturning Roe. But lately, focus on late-term abortions and parental consent laws have become the things that conservatives speak more vocally about.  Ponnuru thought this was strategically the right move for Republicans.  It's a matter of playing the wedge issue game, raising the profile of issues on which more people are on your side, and slowly chipping away at abortion rights.  Let's hope that McCain's opposition to Roe, and his support for amending the Constitution, raises the profile of the the broader issues on which Democrats have the advantage

November 19, 2006 | Permalink


McCain, of course, is a war hero, etc. etc. But he is also one of the most unscrupulous opportunists in American politics. He won all sorts of brownie points with liberals for "making a stand" on the torture issue, but he ultimately supported a very crappy Military Commisions Act that gives the executive a lot of room to do whatever it likes "unlawful enemy combatants."

Remember when McCain beat Bush in the New Hampshire primary? Bush went to Bob Jones University and delivered a reactionary attack on McCain before a cheering crowd of assembled Christiano-fascists, a turning point in his campaign.

McCain learned his lesson and is now cozying up with the theocrats and the John Birchers.

Posted by: Adrian | Nov 19, 2006 11:43:30 PM

I'm terrified of John McCain. I mean, he is, after all, Mr. Straight Talk Express, and his only weakness is saying one thing to one group of people and another to another - and since when has apparent lack of political principle ever hurt anybody?

Posted by: Jon O. | Nov 20, 2006 2:35:19 AM

John McCain's support for federalism is consistent across this and other issues. I think he is being honest about it.

Posted by: Fred Jones | Nov 20, 2006 7:23:39 AM

Fred, that makes no sense. If you favor a constitutional amendment banning abortion, than by definition you are not leaving it up to the states to decide.

Posted by: Dan Miller | Nov 20, 2006 9:28:00 AM

I think John stated that it won't happen and he is expecting (and hoping) for the courts to overturn Roe.

Posted by: Fred Jones | Nov 20, 2006 12:04:13 PM

and what, fred, of mccain's support for various federal "partial birth" abortion bans?

Posted by: snuh | Nov 21, 2006 1:42:45 AM

Good Gawd!

Infanticide is something all together different!

Posted by: Fred Jones | Nov 21, 2006 8:02:17 AM

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