Tuesday, February 12, 2008

McCain on Abortion

Republicans for Choice Claims They Do Not Endorse McCain

Here's what some interpreted as an endorsement by Republicans for Choice (from the RFC website (emphasis added)):

As moderate and conservative pro-choice Republicans are we happy with the results of the Florida primary? Yes and no. 

Our first choice, Rudy Giuliani, did not win.... But our number two choice did win...John McCain. McCain came in second in a survey of our membership. 

While he is personally "pro life" he has time and again reached out and worked with people across the spectrum.  We know we can work with him to create common ground that will allow moderates and conservatives to come together to rebuild the GOP.   

RFC joins with Rudy Giuliani in asking our supporters to consider McCain as they go to vote over the next few weeks. 

John is a true American hero with strong and consistent values.  He will provide the leadership that will rebuild America's confidence in itself and among our allies worldwide. 

And John McCain's election will be a strong message to our enemies...you don't mess with John McCain, he can and will go the distance! 

But, RFC now hastens to add:

Reading our language ... apparently has generated some confusion and misinformation...so let's make it more clear...

Our language ... on McCain is not intended as an endorsement.  We simply stated the facts that John McCain was the second choice, after Giuliani, of our membership. 

We do support Rudy Giuliani's contention that given the folks left in the race after Rudy's withdrawal, McCain would be the best one for the Republican nomination.

So they aren't endorsing McCain, just asking supporters to "consider" him because "we know we can work with him."  And he's the "best one" for the Republican nomination -- after whom?  Mike Huckabee?  Yeah, whatever. 

Here's how reasonable McCain is on abortion.  Via the AP yesterday: Conservative Gary Bauer Endorses McCain:

WASHINGTON (AP) — Conservative Gary Bauer is endorsing Republican presidential candidate John McCain.

The prominent abortion foe says in a statement that McCain "has dedicated his life to defending human rights around the world, including the rights of the unborn."....

McCain thanked Bauer for his support. The Arizona senator says, "Gary has always been a forceful, unapologetic advocate for the sanctity of life and traditional marriage, judicial restraint and a strong American foreign policy based on our values."

From McCain's official website:

Overturning Roe v. Wade

John McCain believes Roe v. Wade is a flawed decision that must be overturned, and as president he will nominate judges who understand that courts should not be in the business of legislating from the bench....

However, the reversal of Roe v. Wade represents only one step in the long path toward ending abortion. Once the question is returned to the states, the fight for life will be one of courage and compassion - the courage of a pregnant mother to bring her child into the world and the compassion of civil society to meet her needs and those of her newborn baby.

I know that many voters see McCain as a maverick who doesn't always toe the line on conservative positions.  Let's just be clear about this:  on abortion, McCain is about as conservative as it gets.  If you're looking for a pro-choice candidate, McCain is not your man.


2008 Presidential Campaign, Abortion, Politics | Permalink

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In your comments about our website Republicans for Choice and our alleged endorsement of McCain you left out a critical part of our clarification. We were anxious to make sure by echoing Giuliani on McCain that our folks would not vote for Romney in the upcoming primaries...the original language was posted BEFORE he dropped out. We were worried that our supporters might remember the old pro-choice Romney as Massachusetts Governatorial candidate not the snake-in-the-grass candidate who sold us out to win a few caucuses...

Also on McCain, take a look at what Ann Coulter wrote about his "pro-life" positions...we watch with glee at the meltdown she is having over him as the presumed nominee.

Yes McCain labels himself "pro life" and has voted against us on most things although he is pro-stem cell and against the so called Human Life Amendment....but should we try to reach out and work with him? That is part of our job...as partisans on choice.

Also please understand that our language refers to the primary season only....on the general election it is a whole new ballgame.

Since I don't know your background in partisan politics I won't presume what your motivations are...or what your frame of reference is...but I have worked in over 450 campaigns worldwide and in 10 Presidential. Our group was the only pro choice group, partisan or otherwise, that called it right on the nomination of Supreme Court Justice David Souter...that he was with us not against us...our information on the Republican partisans is much more extensive than any you would have access to...and to that end I would say....we will try and work with McCain to protect women's rights...will we succeed? Time will tell...but I think we need to try.

Posted by: Ann Stone | Feb 13, 2008 7:51:32 AM

Thanks for your response. Of course I agree that if McCain should be elected President, it would be important to try to work with him. But I hope it doesn't come to that. Even if RFC was only trying to cast McCain as preferable to Romney on choice, it bothers me to see a "pro-choice" group seemingly encourage voters to support someone who thinks Roe v. Wade should be overturned.

Posted by: Caitlin Borgmann | Feb 13, 2008 5:19:24 PM

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