Monday, August 27, 2012

Romney wrong (or lying) about the stakes

In an interview with CBS broadcast today, Romney brushes aside a question about the GOP's no abortion no matter what plank by saying ""Recognize this is the decision that will be made by the Supreme Court.  The Democrats try and make this a political issue every four years, but this is a matter in the courts. It's been settled for some time in the courts."

Leaving aside that it's of course not only the Democrats who campaign on abortion, it's striking how Romney is trying to minimize what would be a tremendously important result of a Romney presidency, which would be the likely end of Roe v Wade.  Scalia, Roberts, Alito and Thomas are likely to vote to overturn, so abortion rights in a Romney-led USA would depend on the continued vitality and good health of the other five justices, some of whom, as previously discussed, are somewhat fragile.

Romney's guiding light in this campaign has been to minimize anything that distracts from making the election a referendum on the economy.  A broad realization that abortion rights depend on the outcome would be catastrophic for Romney, and that's what he's trying to tamp down with his response.

But try as he might to focus the electorate on the economy, his party has an unmistakable and recent (2010) record of campaigning on the economy and then focusing on abortion once in office.  If Justice Ginsburg kicks it at some point in the next four years, is there any reason to suspect Romney might fight his party and nominate a justice who agrees with his view that abortion should at least be legal in cases of rape, incest and to save the health/life of the mother?  He has shown no inkling of backbone in opposing his party on anything, including the aforementioned abortion plank which disagrees with his own view.  As the nominee of the party, having control of a huge majority of the delegates.  If he wanted to steer the GOP in a different direction on the issue, this is his chance.  That he doesn't seem inclined to take it indicates that women's abortion rights would almost certainly go to the grave with the next liberal/moderate justice.

Of course the nation's views on abortion will change as the years go by, and if enough voters want the law to change, it will.  This is not, however, the sort of change that should sneak through without full and honest discussion.  As shown after the 2010 elections, Republicans are perfectly happy to sneak it by us.  I wonder if voters will let them.

No comments: