do-nothing Republicans vs. pro-life Democrats

Pro-life activist Marjorie Dannenfelser serves notice on the Republican party, which increasingly seems to be trying to play down the abortion issue.  In the meantime, the lawmakers who are stepping up to fight abortion are pro-life Democrats such as Rep. Bart Stupak, who is blocking the health care bill unless it forbids funding for abortion.

She points out that pro-lifers have been an important part of the Republican base, but they are being taken for granted.  She cites statistics that as many as 75% of Americans, including big majorities in Democratic districts, oppose using federal money to pay for abortion.  But Republicans aren’t taking advantage of this opening.  She indicates that her group will be supporting pro-life Democrats.

via If Republicans keep ignoring abortion, they’ll lose in the midterm elections – washingtonpost.com.

Are you a single-issue pro-life voter?  What would it take for you to switch to the Democratic party?

Or is the author exaggerating the problem in saying that Republicans are more interested now in economic issues and Tea Party activism?   Aren’t most Tea Party activists also pro-life?

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • Dan Kempin

    No, I would not switch to the Democrat party, but yes, I would vote for a truly pro-life Democrat over a do-nothing Republican. (This is an answer to a theoretical question, since I have not yet seen the reality in my voting district.) If Stupak et al. stand firm, I will be truly impressed. Experience with politicians, though, leans me toward a “wait and see” approach.

  • Dan Kempin

    No, I would not switch to the Democrat party, but yes, I would vote for a truly pro-life Democrat over a do-nothing Republican. (This is an answer to a theoretical question, since I have not yet seen the reality in my voting district.) If Stupak et al. stand firm, I will be truly impressed. Experience with politicians, though, leans me toward a “wait and see” approach.

  • http://wipfandstock.com/store/As_Though_It_Were_Actually_True_A_Christian_Apologetics_Primer Matt C.

    I’m not a single issue voter, but I would never vote for a pro-abortion politician. Along with a few other issues, this one is a basic requirement for competency to hold office. Of course I wouldn’t vote for Democrats or most Republicans on other grounds anyways, so it’s kind of a moot point for me.

    The big problem for the Republicans is that they haven’t actually been conservative for a long time except in their rhetoric. Besides the “at least they aren’t as bad as the Democrats” argument, the fact that they are usually seen as the only home for pro-lifers is the only reason they still have a base at all. Many people will cheerfully abandon them if more Democrats go pro-life.

  • http://wipfandstock.com/store/As_Though_It_Were_Actually_True_A_Christian_Apologetics_Primer Matt C.

    I’m not a single issue voter, but I would never vote for a pro-abortion politician. Along with a few other issues, this one is a basic requirement for competency to hold office. Of course I wouldn’t vote for Democrats or most Republicans on other grounds anyways, so it’s kind of a moot point for me.

    The big problem for the Republicans is that they haven’t actually been conservative for a long time except in their rhetoric. Besides the “at least they aren’t as bad as the Democrats” argument, the fact that they are usually seen as the only home for pro-lifers is the only reason they still have a base at all. Many people will cheerfully abandon them if more Democrats go pro-life.

  • Winston Smith

    As long as pro-choicers like Nancy Pelosi, Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer dominate the party, the Democrats will never be a real pro-life alternative. There have always been pro-life Democrats — recall that Gov. Bob Casey of Pennsylvania was not allowed to speak at the (1992, I think) convention because he was pro-life.

  • Winston Smith

    As long as pro-choicers like Nancy Pelosi, Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer dominate the party, the Democrats will never be a real pro-life alternative. There have always been pro-life Democrats — recall that Gov. Bob Casey of Pennsylvania was not allowed to speak at the (1992, I think) convention because he was pro-life.

  • Carl Vehse

    What would it take for you to switch to the Democratic party?

    An act of treason, since it is the party of infanticide by abortion. As for pro-life people who are Democrats, they are analogous to Christians who were members of the Nazi Party in wartime Germany.

  • Carl Vehse

    What would it take for you to switch to the Democratic party?

    An act of treason, since it is the party of infanticide by abortion. As for pro-life people who are Democrats, they are analogous to Christians who were members of the Nazi Party in wartime Germany.

  • Jonathan

    Given a pro-choice Republican, like a Scott Brown, or a pro-life Democrat, like a Bart Stupak, I would vote for the Democrat.

    I’ve read a number of articles that say the Tea Party movement is avoiding linking itself with a lot of social issues, including abortion. I believe “TEA” started as an acronym for “Taxed Enough Already,” which pretty much has the focus of fiscal conservatism as its base.

  • Jonathan

    Given a pro-choice Republican, like a Scott Brown, or a pro-life Democrat, like a Bart Stupak, I would vote for the Democrat.

    I’ve read a number of articles that say the Tea Party movement is avoiding linking itself with a lot of social issues, including abortion. I believe “TEA” started as an acronym for “Taxed Enough Already,” which pretty much has the focus of fiscal conservatism as its base.

  • Peter Leavitt

    The Republicans are far from being “Do Nothing” on the issue of abortion. Within the legal restraints of Roe/Wade and Casey, they have worked at passing laws on such issues as partial birth abortion; also, in the long run the issue of abortion rests fundamentally on overturning Roe v, Wade/Casey. Arguably, Pres. Bush in recent years made the greatest contribution to this cause with his appointments of Justices Roberts and Alito. The biggest threat to this cause routinely comes from the justices that Democrat presidents have nominated, including Pres. Clinton’s and Obama’s appointments of Justices Breyer, Ginsburg, and Sotomayor.

    One might just as well believe in the tooth fairy as in the Democratic Party’s favorable influence on the issue of slaughtering unborn children.

  • Peter Leavitt

    The Republicans are far from being “Do Nothing” on the issue of abortion. Within the legal restraints of Roe/Wade and Casey, they have worked at passing laws on such issues as partial birth abortion; also, in the long run the issue of abortion rests fundamentally on overturning Roe v, Wade/Casey. Arguably, Pres. Bush in recent years made the greatest contribution to this cause with his appointments of Justices Roberts and Alito. The biggest threat to this cause routinely comes from the justices that Democrat presidents have nominated, including Pres. Clinton’s and Obama’s appointments of Justices Breyer, Ginsburg, and Sotomayor.

    One might just as well believe in the tooth fairy as in the Democratic Party’s favorable influence on the issue of slaughtering unborn children.

  • http://lutherama.blogspot.com Dr. Luther in 21st Century

    It would take a lot for me to ever consider voting Democratic. I would likely vote Libertarian first.

  • http://lutherama.blogspot.com Dr. Luther in 21st Century

    It would take a lot for me to ever consider voting Democratic. I would likely vote Libertarian first.

  • scots

    I’m a single issue voter. For me to become a Democrat two things would have to happen. The DNC would have to remove abortion on demand as part of the party platform and the RNC would have to adopt abortion on demand as part of their party platform. There are nuances, of course, but that’s the simple view.

  • scots

    I’m a single issue voter. For me to become a Democrat two things would have to happen. The DNC would have to remove abortion on demand as part of the party platform and the RNC would have to adopt abortion on demand as part of their party platform. There are nuances, of course, but that’s the simple view.

  • Jerry

    The working definition of a Republican is someone who would never vote for a Democrat. However, that’s not far off. The divide between the two parties has become more than obvious: Republicans are for preserving the Constitution, including the right to life; Democrats for ignoring the Constitution as they see fit including denying the right to life. Most pro-life Democrats take this as a religious issue. They don’t believe it belongs in the political realm unless they’re being asked to pay for it. So this is much more than a single-issue, it’s the very heart and soul of the “American experiment.”

  • Jerry

    The working definition of a Republican is someone who would never vote for a Democrat. However, that’s not far off. The divide between the two parties has become more than obvious: Republicans are for preserving the Constitution, including the right to life; Democrats for ignoring the Constitution as they see fit including denying the right to life. Most pro-life Democrats take this as a religious issue. They don’t believe it belongs in the political realm unless they’re being asked to pay for it. So this is much more than a single-issue, it’s the very heart and soul of the “American experiment.”

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    It isn’t a single issue, I care about other issues, just not near as much, it is a biggest issue thing for me.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    It isn’t a single issue, I care about other issues, just not near as much, it is a biggest issue thing for me.

  • DonS

    Ms. Dannenfelser’s premise is way overblown. Every Republican, including Cao, is currently on record as opposing this legislation, and its abortion funding (though Democrats have attempted to obfuscate on the issue) is a prominent reason. Just what are the Republicans supposed to do, in addition to what has already been done? At this point, it is a Democratic party fight — the Republicans do not have the votes to further influence the matter.

  • DonS

    Ms. Dannenfelser’s premise is way overblown. Every Republican, including Cao, is currently on record as opposing this legislation, and its abortion funding (though Democrats have attempted to obfuscate on the issue) is a prominent reason. Just what are the Republicans supposed to do, in addition to what has already been done? At this point, it is a Democratic party fight — the Republicans do not have the votes to further influence the matter.

  • http://jen-lehmann.livejournal.com Jen

    I’m fascinated by the other comments. I’m sick of having my faith called into question because I don’t vote Republican. I grew up in California, then moved to Arizona, and never had a pro-life candidate from a major party to vote for. It’s nice for these others that their Republican candidates are pro-life, but the party has repeatedly chosen key note speakers to represent their lack of a solid pro-life position (Susan Molinari, Rudy Guiliani).

  • http://jen-lehmann.livejournal.com Jen

    I’m fascinated by the other comments. I’m sick of having my faith called into question because I don’t vote Republican. I grew up in California, then moved to Arizona, and never had a pro-life candidate from a major party to vote for. It’s nice for these others that their Republican candidates are pro-life, but the party has repeatedly chosen key note speakers to represent their lack of a solid pro-life position (Susan Molinari, Rudy Guiliani).

  • http://RoseFremer@yahoo.com Rose

    If you’d like to thank Bart Stupak, come vacation in his district in northern Michigan this summer on Lake Michigan, Lake Huron or Lake Superior—any place north of Alpena or Petosky, incuding Mackinac and the Upper Peninsula. Some of the district is economically stressed and the Democrats will punish Stupak for his position. Wouldn’t it be great if many prolife people showed up to thank the 1st Congressional district?

  • http://RoseFremer@yahoo.com Rose

    If you’d like to thank Bart Stupak, come vacation in his district in northern Michigan this summer on Lake Michigan, Lake Huron or Lake Superior—any place north of Alpena or Petosky, incuding Mackinac and the Upper Peninsula. Some of the district is economically stressed and the Democrats will punish Stupak for his position. Wouldn’t it be great if many prolife people showed up to thank the 1st Congressional district?

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Don (@11), could you point me to a place where abortion funding is listed as a “prominent reason” by any — apparently many — Republicans for opposing the health care bill? I have yet to run across any Republican politicians making this claim. The only politicians I have found opposing the bill for abortion reasons are Democrats.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Don (@11), could you point me to a place where abortion funding is listed as a “prominent reason” by any — apparently many — Republicans for opposing the health care bill? I have yet to run across any Republican politicians making this claim. The only politicians I have found opposing the bill for abortion reasons are Democrats.

  • J

    I’m still looking at the Senate legislation to see where it ‘funds abortion.’ My searches among the bill’s opponents all lead to the same NRLC summary, which is a house of cards, e.g., If A happens, then B might happen, which could lead to C happening, which means that D might occur, etc.

    I conclude that only what the bill arguably ‘funds’ abortions that it may allow a citizen to get a tax credit to pay for some private policy, and that policy may cover an elective abortion.

    I find this interesting because the very insurance companies that ‘fund’ their policyholders’ abortions, by paying for them, receive all kinds of tax breaks from the US government. Thus, to apply this logic, our tax dollars right now ‘fund’ the abortion industry, since the industry would likely fold if health insurance companies did not pay for them. And it’s highly likely that your health insurance comes from a company that covers abortions. So your premiums right now ‘fund’ abortions. Thus, the only honorable thing to do is give up yours and your family’s health insurance coverage.
    Of course you won’t do that. But you will fight, on the basis of this specious abortion logic, to ensure that people right who can’t afford the same insurance you have will remain without it. All in the name of pro life. Rich irony.

  • J

    I’m still looking at the Senate legislation to see where it ‘funds abortion.’ My searches among the bill’s opponents all lead to the same NRLC summary, which is a house of cards, e.g., If A happens, then B might happen, which could lead to C happening, which means that D might occur, etc.

    I conclude that only what the bill arguably ‘funds’ abortions that it may allow a citizen to get a tax credit to pay for some private policy, and that policy may cover an elective abortion.

    I find this interesting because the very insurance companies that ‘fund’ their policyholders’ abortions, by paying for them, receive all kinds of tax breaks from the US government. Thus, to apply this logic, our tax dollars right now ‘fund’ the abortion industry, since the industry would likely fold if health insurance companies did not pay for them. And it’s highly likely that your health insurance comes from a company that covers abortions. So your premiums right now ‘fund’ abortions. Thus, the only honorable thing to do is give up yours and your family’s health insurance coverage.
    Of course you won’t do that. But you will fight, on the basis of this specious abortion logic, to ensure that people right who can’t afford the same insurance you have will remain without it. All in the name of pro life. Rich irony.

  • J

    Sorry. The first sentence of my 2d paragraph @15 should have read: “I conclude that the only way the bill arguably ‘funds abortions is by allowing a citizen to ….”

  • J

    Sorry. The first sentence of my 2d paragraph @15 should have read: “I conclude that the only way the bill arguably ‘funds abortions is by allowing a citizen to ….”

  • Bryan Lindemood

    I agree with Jen and would like to vacation in Michigan this year. We’ll see. Rose makes me laugh.

    The Republican stance on abortion is what it has been for too long: Get votes. Win. Do nothing. Lose. Repeat.

  • Bryan Lindemood

    I agree with Jen and would like to vacation in Michigan this year. We’ll see. Rose makes me laugh.

    The Republican stance on abortion is what it has been for too long: Get votes. Win. Do nothing. Lose. Repeat.

  • Adam

    Lindemood@17
    Your candor is refreshing. But may I ask if you have recently voted for the Democratic candidate for national office? I suspect you haven’t. If I’m wrong, would you tell us what compelled you to vote for the Democrat? I ask this only because you’ve also described the typical pro life GOP voter.
    Voter votes GOP. GOP wins. Nothing done. GOP whips voters into a frenzy over abortion issue. Voter votes GOP. Repeat.

  • Adam

    Lindemood@17
    Your candor is refreshing. But may I ask if you have recently voted for the Democratic candidate for national office? I suspect you haven’t. If I’m wrong, would you tell us what compelled you to vote for the Democrat? I ask this only because you’ve also described the typical pro life GOP voter.
    Voter votes GOP. GOP wins. Nothing done. GOP whips voters into a frenzy over abortion issue. Voter votes GOP. Repeat.

  • Bryan Lindemood

    Adam. I have a hard time voting for Democrats because I was raised in Idaho :-) . For national office, rather than not vote, I hope to vote for the most viable 3rd party candidate. Yes, I once voted nearly exclusively Republican. Now, I view there to be very little practical difference between the 2 major parties. I feel no pressure to vote for either of them. I’m a pro-life small-local-government-centric liberal, but that’s because I live in Utah ;-) . That’s the most accurate I can think to describe myself politically right now. Just being honest. I’m glad you find it refreshing.

  • Bryan Lindemood

    Adam. I have a hard time voting for Democrats because I was raised in Idaho :-) . For national office, rather than not vote, I hope to vote for the most viable 3rd party candidate. Yes, I once voted nearly exclusively Republican. Now, I view there to be very little practical difference between the 2 major parties. I feel no pressure to vote for either of them. I’m a pro-life small-local-government-centric liberal, but that’s because I live in Utah ;-) . That’s the most accurate I can think to describe myself politically right now. Just being honest. I’m glad you find it refreshing.

  • DonS

    tODD @ 14: Here you go, from John Boehner: http://republicanleader.house.gov/blog/?p=725

    Let’s understand this in context. The Republicans hate this bill on a thousand levels, and express them all in their opposition. The Stupak Democrats hate it for one primary reason, which is abortion. So that is the issue that gets the play with respect to Democratic opposition. It doesn’t mean these Democrats are more pro-life than Republicans. It just means that the issue is more prominent with them because it is holding up their vote.

    Two things to keep in mind: 1) I don’t think the Republicans do enough on the pro-life issue, agreeing with many others on this thread. However, to even contemplate the notion that Democrats are better than Republicans on pro-life is nuts.
    2) When the House was organized last January, the most adament pro-life Democrats voted for Nancy Pelosi as their Speaker. She is easily the most radical, pro-abortion speaker ever to sit in that chair, and she controls the House agenda. In contrast, the most pro-abortion Republicans voted for John Boehner as their leader. Enough said about the ultimate value of a pro-life Democrat. Until the party understands that abortion is murder, not a choice, it is difficult to understand how a pro-life politician can remain in that party and cast votes for that kind of radical leadership. Also, watch as many of the “Stupak 12″ are caving under the pressure of the Pelosi push this week.

  • DonS

    tODD @ 14: Here you go, from John Boehner: http://republicanleader.house.gov/blog/?p=725

    Let’s understand this in context. The Republicans hate this bill on a thousand levels, and express them all in their opposition. The Stupak Democrats hate it for one primary reason, which is abortion. So that is the issue that gets the play with respect to Democratic opposition. It doesn’t mean these Democrats are more pro-life than Republicans. It just means that the issue is more prominent with them because it is holding up their vote.

    Two things to keep in mind: 1) I don’t think the Republicans do enough on the pro-life issue, agreeing with many others on this thread. However, to even contemplate the notion that Democrats are better than Republicans on pro-life is nuts.
    2) When the House was organized last January, the most adament pro-life Democrats voted for Nancy Pelosi as their Speaker. She is easily the most radical, pro-abortion speaker ever to sit in that chair, and she controls the House agenda. In contrast, the most pro-abortion Republicans voted for John Boehner as their leader. Enough said about the ultimate value of a pro-life Democrat. Until the party understands that abortion is murder, not a choice, it is difficult to understand how a pro-life politician can remain in that party and cast votes for that kind of radical leadership. Also, watch as many of the “Stupak 12″ are caving under the pressure of the Pelosi push this week.

  • Adam

    Lindemood@19
    Thanks. I appreciate your answering my question.

    DonS @20
    What’s ‘nuts’ is your belief that the Republican party is pro life.

  • Adam

    Lindemood@19
    Thanks. I appreciate your answering my question.

    DonS @20
    What’s ‘nuts’ is your belief that the Republican party is pro life.

  • DonS

    Adam @ 21: As usual, a very well reasoned screed. Thanks for your thoughtful comment.

  • DonS

    Adam @ 21: As usual, a very well reasoned screed. Thanks for your thoughtful comment.

  • Adam

    DonS @22.
    You make it much too easy.

    J’s comment @15 made me check my health insurance policy, which the taxpayers help pay for. While it does not cover elective abortions, it does pay for abortions involving ‘maternal risk.’ I don’t know if that’s another term for ‘medically necessary,’ but, more importantly for this discussion , it is not an outright prohibition. Thus, taxes (right now) help pay for abortions under my policy.

  • Adam

    DonS @22.
    You make it much too easy.

    J’s comment @15 made me check my health insurance policy, which the taxpayers help pay for. While it does not cover elective abortions, it does pay for abortions involving ‘maternal risk.’ I don’t know if that’s another term for ‘medically necessary,’ but, more importantly for this discussion , it is not an outright prohibition. Thus, taxes (right now) help pay for abortions under my policy.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Don, thanks for the Boehner link (@20). Still, I feel you’re making two rather different claims. Which of these two is the one you want to defend:

    “Every Republican … is currently on record as opposing this legislation, and its abortion funding … is a prominent reason.” (@11)

    “The Republicans hate this bill on a thousand levels, and express them all in their opposition.” (@20)

    The first makes it sound like one of the main reasons Republicans are opposing this bill is abortion. The second makes it sound like abortion is merely one of a thousand reasons they hate this bill.

    Having searched through Boehner’s blog, I’m not convinced that abortion is “a prominent reason” that he opposed this health care bill (a rough Google search says that perhaps 8% of his health care posts mention abortion). But I am convinced that it is one of the thousands of reasons he opposes it.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Don, thanks for the Boehner link (@20). Still, I feel you’re making two rather different claims. Which of these two is the one you want to defend:

    “Every Republican … is currently on record as opposing this legislation, and its abortion funding … is a prominent reason.” (@11)

    “The Republicans hate this bill on a thousand levels, and express them all in their opposition.” (@20)

    The first makes it sound like one of the main reasons Republicans are opposing this bill is abortion. The second makes it sound like abortion is merely one of a thousand reasons they hate this bill.

    Having searched through Boehner’s blog, I’m not convinced that abortion is “a prominent reason” that he opposed this health care bill (a rough Google search says that perhaps 8% of his health care posts mention abortion). But I am convinced that it is one of the thousands of reasons he opposes it.

  • Peter Leavitt

    The notion that the Republicans attract votes but do nothing about abortion is a canard. Congress in 2003 led by the Republicans passed partial-birth abortion acts in 1995 and 1997 that were vetoed by Pres. Clinton. In Illinois Republicans were thwarted in passing a partial-birth abortion act by Barack Obama, Finally in 2003 the Republicans were able to push a partial-birth abortion act through that was signed by Pres. Bush.

    Pres. Bush, also, appointed John Roberts and Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court, both of whom, while cagey in their statements about Roe v. Wade, bid fair to eventually find a way to undo this terrible decision. Just now the only hope for this is to limit Pres. Obama to one term and hope that the next Republican president can tip the court’s balance. Otherwise the best that Republican solons can do is legislate at the margins of Roe v. Wade and limit the extreme proposals of the present majority of Democrats who favor the slaughter of unborn children, which is exactly what they are doing.

    The Christians who think that voting a few pro-life Democrats into office will substantively change the Democratic position on abortion are rather naive. The Democrats are incorrigible on abortion and homosexual marriage.

  • Peter Leavitt

    The notion that the Republicans attract votes but do nothing about abortion is a canard. Congress in 2003 led by the Republicans passed partial-birth abortion acts in 1995 and 1997 that were vetoed by Pres. Clinton. In Illinois Republicans were thwarted in passing a partial-birth abortion act by Barack Obama, Finally in 2003 the Republicans were able to push a partial-birth abortion act through that was signed by Pres. Bush.

    Pres. Bush, also, appointed John Roberts and Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court, both of whom, while cagey in their statements about Roe v. Wade, bid fair to eventually find a way to undo this terrible decision. Just now the only hope for this is to limit Pres. Obama to one term and hope that the next Republican president can tip the court’s balance. Otherwise the best that Republican solons can do is legislate at the margins of Roe v. Wade and limit the extreme proposals of the present majority of Democrats who favor the slaughter of unborn children, which is exactly what they are doing.

    The Christians who think that voting a few pro-life Democrats into office will substantively change the Democratic position on abortion are rather naive. The Democrats are incorrigible on abortion and homosexual marriage.

  • Peter Leavitt

    In the above first para. second sentence strike out …in 2003….

  • Peter Leavitt

    In the above first para. second sentence strike out …in 2003….

  • Adam

    Fromt he same Wikipedia article that Peter read:

    “A 2007 article in The Boston Globe reported that, in response to this statute [prohibited partial birth abortions], many abortion providers had adopted the practice of injecting the fetus with lethal drugs before all late-term abortions. Even though these providers do not perform intact dilation and extraction procedures, they feel the broad wording of the ban compels them “to do all they can to protect themselves and their staff from the possibility of being accused.””

    So the partial-birth abortion ban is no ban at all.

  • Adam

    Fromt he same Wikipedia article that Peter read:

    “A 2007 article in The Boston Globe reported that, in response to this statute [prohibited partial birth abortions], many abortion providers had adopted the practice of injecting the fetus with lethal drugs before all late-term abortions. Even though these providers do not perform intact dilation and extraction procedures, they feel the broad wording of the ban compels them “to do all they can to protect themselves and their staff from the possibility of being accused.””

    So the partial-birth abortion ban is no ban at all.

  • DonS

    Adam @ 23: I’m not sure what I am supposedly making easy. But my question for you would be to ask you why the taxpayers are helping you to pay for your health insurance policy.

  • DonS

    Adam @ 23: I’m not sure what I am supposedly making easy. But my question for you would be to ask you why the taxpayers are helping you to pay for your health insurance policy.

  • DonS

    tODD @ 24: My original comment was that every Republican, including Joseph Cao, is currently on record as opposing the health care bill. Cao specifically cited the weak Senate abortion language as his reason for switching from his earlier support of the House bill, with the Stupak amendment. The abortion provision in the Senate bill is a prominent reason for most of the Republicans to oppose the bill, though there are a thousand other reasons. I’m sure not all Republicans find the abortion problem persuasive, because not all Republicans are pro-life. But, most are. I am convinced that were the other 999 reasons to be resolved to their liking, a majority of Republicans (hopefully a large majority) would still oppose the bill because of the abortion language. We can’t know that, because the Democrats are unwilling to even begin to seriously negotiate this thing with Republicans, so we are dealing with hypotheticals.

    The bottom line to my original comment was that the pro-life Democrats, like Stupak, are getting the attention right now, because the pro-abortion language in the Senate bill is the only issue they are citing as preventing them from voting for it. So it is a big deal. Since the Republicans are uniformly against the entire measure, the pro-life issue isn’t singled out for them. But it doesn’t mean it is less important, and it doesn’t mean they are less pro-life than Stupak. And it certainly doesn’t mean they are ignoring abortion, as Dannenfelser seems to be saying in her article.

  • DonS

    tODD @ 24: My original comment was that every Republican, including Joseph Cao, is currently on record as opposing the health care bill. Cao specifically cited the weak Senate abortion language as his reason for switching from his earlier support of the House bill, with the Stupak amendment. The abortion provision in the Senate bill is a prominent reason for most of the Republicans to oppose the bill, though there are a thousand other reasons. I’m sure not all Republicans find the abortion problem persuasive, because not all Republicans are pro-life. But, most are. I am convinced that were the other 999 reasons to be resolved to their liking, a majority of Republicans (hopefully a large majority) would still oppose the bill because of the abortion language. We can’t know that, because the Democrats are unwilling to even begin to seriously negotiate this thing with Republicans, so we are dealing with hypotheticals.

    The bottom line to my original comment was that the pro-life Democrats, like Stupak, are getting the attention right now, because the pro-abortion language in the Senate bill is the only issue they are citing as preventing them from voting for it. So it is a big deal. Since the Republicans are uniformly against the entire measure, the pro-life issue isn’t singled out for them. But it doesn’t mean it is less important, and it doesn’t mean they are less pro-life than Stupak. And it certainly doesn’t mean they are ignoring abortion, as Dannenfelser seems to be saying in her article.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Well, Adam , the partial-birth abortion act was an honest attempt to prevent partial-birth abortions. Of course, those physicians and individuals who wish to slaughter late-term pre-natal babies found a way around this act with lethal drugs, though this hardly condemns the many Republicans and few Democrats who favored the partial-birth abortion law.

    Your suggestion that Republicans merely manipulate the voters on the issue of abortion is merely vicious, juvenile cynicism. It’s the sort of clever and easy post-modern relativism that I abhor.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Well, Adam , the partial-birth abortion act was an honest attempt to prevent partial-birth abortions. Of course, those physicians and individuals who wish to slaughter late-term pre-natal babies found a way around this act with lethal drugs, though this hardly condemns the many Republicans and few Democrats who favored the partial-birth abortion law.

    Your suggestion that Republicans merely manipulate the voters on the issue of abortion is merely vicious, juvenile cynicism. It’s the sort of clever and easy post-modern relativism that I abhor.

  • DonS

    Well stated, Peter. And to further the point, it is the height of cynicism, given Adam’s apparent strong opposition to abortion, for him to support Democrats, given the party’s adamant and unconditional support of the right to even late term abortions, on the pretext that Republicans aren’t sufficiently pro-life either.

  • DonS

    Well stated, Peter. And to further the point, it is the height of cynicism, given Adam’s apparent strong opposition to abortion, for him to support Democrats, given the party’s adamant and unconditional support of the right to even late term abortions, on the pretext that Republicans aren’t sufficiently pro-life either.

  • Adam

    Face it, DonS. The GOP does not want health care reform. Period.
    The ‘abortion provision’ is a red herring because, with the exception of Rep. Cao, every GOP member of the House voted against the House bill, which HAD the Stupak language.
    Cao, to be consistent, says he needs the Stupak language to support the Senate bill. But every other GOP representative couldn’t care less about the Stupak lanaguge because they have NO interest in supporting health care reform.
    While the GOP may cite ‘abortion’ as one of its myriad of reasons for opposing health care reform, it is NOT an honest reason.

  • Adam

    Face it, DonS. The GOP does not want health care reform. Period.
    The ‘abortion provision’ is a red herring because, with the exception of Rep. Cao, every GOP member of the House voted against the House bill, which HAD the Stupak language.
    Cao, to be consistent, says he needs the Stupak language to support the Senate bill. But every other GOP representative couldn’t care less about the Stupak lanaguge because they have NO interest in supporting health care reform.
    While the GOP may cite ‘abortion’ as one of its myriad of reasons for opposing health care reform, it is NOT an honest reason.

  • DonS

    Adam @ 32: I’m having trouble following your logic. What you appear to be saying is that, once the Stupak language was inserted into the original House bill, every Republican should have fallen in line to support it, regardless of how horrible the rest of it was, and how much the nature of it abrogated every principle of small, limited federal government which Republicans support. Otherwise, in your view, they don’t “want health care reform. Period.” So, in your view, the House bill was the only legitimate approach to health care reform. And since the Republicans didn’t support the bill even when the Stupak language was added, their abortion reason “was NOT an honest one”.

    Just because you don’t like the health care reform proposals the Republicans support (Paul Ryan has done an outstanding job of outlining one such approach), doesn’t mean Republicans don’t want health care reform. It just means they don’t want government-run, bureaucratic, inefficient, liberty-robbing, healthcare choice limiting, rationed health care. Unfortunately, in Obama’s world, it’s his way or the highway, so we have probably lost our chance for real healthcare reform until after the next election.

  • DonS

    Adam @ 32: I’m having trouble following your logic. What you appear to be saying is that, once the Stupak language was inserted into the original House bill, every Republican should have fallen in line to support it, regardless of how horrible the rest of it was, and how much the nature of it abrogated every principle of small, limited federal government which Republicans support. Otherwise, in your view, they don’t “want health care reform. Period.” So, in your view, the House bill was the only legitimate approach to health care reform. And since the Republicans didn’t support the bill even when the Stupak language was added, their abortion reason “was NOT an honest one”.

    Just because you don’t like the health care reform proposals the Republicans support (Paul Ryan has done an outstanding job of outlining one such approach), doesn’t mean Republicans don’t want health care reform. It just means they don’t want government-run, bureaucratic, inefficient, liberty-robbing, healthcare choice limiting, rationed health care. Unfortunately, in Obama’s world, it’s his way or the highway, so we have probably lost our chance for real healthcare reform until after the next election.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Face it, DonS. The GOP does not want health care reform.

    This is another of your moralistic, simple-minded and cynical effusions. I should suggest that you read Paul Ryan’s Road Map that reforms and provides health-care in a way that the CBO affirms is fiscally sustainable, unlike Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security that are vastly underfunded.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Face it, DonS. The GOP does not want health care reform.

    This is another of your moralistic, simple-minded and cynical effusions. I should suggest that you read Paul Ryan’s Road Map that reforms and provides health-care in a way that the CBO affirms is fiscally sustainable, unlike Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security that are vastly underfunded.

  • Adam

    Peter, I love your language, but your assertions could use some help. The CBO said the following about Ryan’s proposals:

    “Dear Congressman:
    At your request, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has analyzed the Roadmap for America’s Future Act of 2010, which would make comprehensive changes to the Social Security program; to federal involvement in health care, including Medicare,
    Medicaid, and the tax treatment of health insurance; to other federal spending; and to other features of the tax system.

    “CBO’s analysis is based on the legislation that you introduced today, as modified pursuant to specifications provided by your staff. In particular, the specifications for Medicaid and the tax system that CBO analyzed are highly stylized versions of the more detailed provisions in the bill.

    “This letter summarizes the agency’s analysis of the impact that the bill (along with the simplifying specifications) would have on federal outlays, budget deficits, and debt during the next 75 years.

    “The analysis is subject to a great deal of uncertainty, because of both the complexity of the proposal and the very long time horizon over which its many provisions would unfold. The analysis does not represent a cost estimate for the legislation, which would require much more detailed analysis and would be much more limited in the time span that could be examined.”

  • Adam

    Peter, I love your language, but your assertions could use some help. The CBO said the following about Ryan’s proposals:

    “Dear Congressman:
    At your request, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has analyzed the Roadmap for America’s Future Act of 2010, which would make comprehensive changes to the Social Security program; to federal involvement in health care, including Medicare,
    Medicaid, and the tax treatment of health insurance; to other federal spending; and to other features of the tax system.

    “CBO’s analysis is based on the legislation that you introduced today, as modified pursuant to specifications provided by your staff. In particular, the specifications for Medicaid and the tax system that CBO analyzed are highly stylized versions of the more detailed provisions in the bill.

    “This letter summarizes the agency’s analysis of the impact that the bill (along with the simplifying specifications) would have on federal outlays, budget deficits, and debt during the next 75 years.

    “The analysis is subject to a great deal of uncertainty, because of both the complexity of the proposal and the very long time horizon over which its many provisions would unfold. The analysis does not represent a cost estimate for the legislation, which would require much more detailed analysis and would be much more limited in the time span that could be examined.”

  • Peter Leavitt

    Adam, you gave us the proper CBO qualifications of its analysis of the RoadMap for Health-Care, though you neglected to point out its summary analysis, which is as follows:

    Overall Budgetary Effects of the Roadmap
    The Roadmap, in the form that CBO analyzed, would result in less federal spending for Medicare and Medicaid as well as lower tax revenues than projected under CBO’s alternative fiscal scenario (see Table 1). Federal spending for Social Security would be
    slightly higher than under CBO’s alternative fiscal scenario for much of the projection period. On balance, those changes would reduce federal budget deficits and the fed-eral debt. Under the proposal, federal outlays excluding interest (so-called primary spending) would decline, from 26 percent of GDP in 2009 to 19 percent in 2020,
    16 percent in 2060, and 14 percent in 2080

    Also, I take it that by acknowledging that Republican Congressman Ryan has proposed a serious Health-Care plan that you have withdrawn tour earlier effusions that th republicans simply don’t care
    about the procision of health-care.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Adam, you gave us the proper CBO qualifications of its analysis of the RoadMap for Health-Care, though you neglected to point out its summary analysis, which is as follows:

    Overall Budgetary Effects of the Roadmap
    The Roadmap, in the form that CBO analyzed, would result in less federal spending for Medicare and Medicaid as well as lower tax revenues than projected under CBO’s alternative fiscal scenario (see Table 1). Federal spending for Social Security would be
    slightly higher than under CBO’s alternative fiscal scenario for much of the projection period. On balance, those changes would reduce federal budget deficits and the fed-eral debt. Under the proposal, federal outlays excluding interest (so-called primary spending) would decline, from 26 percent of GDP in 2009 to 19 percent in 2020,
    16 percent in 2060, and 14 percent in 2080

    Also, I take it that by acknowledging that Republican Congressman Ryan has proposed a serious Health-Care plan that you have withdrawn tour earlier effusions that th republicans simply don’t care
    about the procision of health-care.

  • Adam

    Peter, you’re kidding, no?
    Read the dates. All the CBO could reasonably conclude from Ryan’s bizarre plan to essentially gut these programs is that, yes, by the close of the 21st century, federal outlays would decline since the programs would be on life support. Even so, the CBO noted that its analysis was subject to a great deal of uncertainty.
    Not even the Republicans take Ryan seriously, which is why his plans don’t represent the party.
    Why I say the GOP doesn’t really care about health care reform is that when the party’s in office, it does nothing about it.

  • Adam

    Peter, you’re kidding, no?
    Read the dates. All the CBO could reasonably conclude from Ryan’s bizarre plan to essentially gut these programs is that, yes, by the close of the 21st century, federal outlays would decline since the programs would be on life support. Even so, the CBO noted that its analysis was subject to a great deal of uncertainty.
    Not even the Republicans take Ryan seriously, which is why his plans don’t represent the party.
    Why I say the GOP doesn’t really care about health care reform is that when the party’s in office, it does nothing about it.

  • http://chaz-lehmann.livejournal.com Rev. Charles Lehmann

    I think it’s incredibly unlikely that I’ll ever register again as a member of either the Democratic or Republican parties, but if the election was between a pro-life Democrat and a pro-life Republican, I’d probably vote for the Democrat every time.

    Pro-life Democrats are willing to take a much more multifaceted approach to reducing the number of abortions than your average pro-life Republican is.

    Overturning Roe v. Wade would at most reduce the number of abortions by 10% (based on the likelihood of each individual state criminalizing abortions). That means that 90% of the babies dying today would still die. That’s unacceptable. Many Republicans work toward overturning Roe v. Wade and that’s it. Unacceptable.

    Most pro-life Democrats have that as one of several goals. Better.

  • http://chaz-lehmann.livejournal.com Rev. Charles Lehmann

    I think it’s incredibly unlikely that I’ll ever register again as a member of either the Democratic or Republican parties, but if the election was between a pro-life Democrat and a pro-life Republican, I’d probably vote for the Democrat every time.

    Pro-life Democrats are willing to take a much more multifaceted approach to reducing the number of abortions than your average pro-life Republican is.

    Overturning Roe v. Wade would at most reduce the number of abortions by 10% (based on the likelihood of each individual state criminalizing abortions). That means that 90% of the babies dying today would still die. That’s unacceptable. Many Republicans work toward overturning Roe v. Wade and that’s it. Unacceptable.

    Most pro-life Democrats have that as one of several goals. Better.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Adam, you’re not paying attention to this matter. In recent months Ryan’s proposals, based on long-term entitlement reforms, have been getting considerable attention from both the pundits and politicians. His is probably the only proposal at the national level that deal scomprehensively with taxes, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Health-Care. and has been scored by CBO. Many Republicans and some Democrats are taking his proposals seriously. He is a ranking member of the House Budget Committee who is well aware that America is heading for a fiscal disaster unless we get control of these vastly underfunded entitlements.

    Should you wish to understand the impact of Ryan’s Roadmap, have a look at Ross Douthat’s New York Times article, Paul Ryan’s Moment., including:

    That’s Ryan’s own view of the matter. “I would argue that I make a lot of concessions here to the left,” he told me. “I’m not trying to win an award from the Cato Institute.” He was quick to acknowledge that his blueprint would still work with somewhat less austerity, and somewhat larger benefits: “I pay off the debt completely, and over time I wipe all these unfunded liabilities off the books. But if we do half that, that’s fantastic.” And he was emphatic, in our conversation, about the plausibility of bipartisan conversation: “I’m just trying to get this debate going. I put this plan out there, [hoping] that other people would do the same thing, and then we can start debating it. There are plenty of ways to fix this thing, and … I’m not suggesting that I have all the answers. I’m suggesting that I have an answer, and I’m hoping other people will bring their answers to the table.”

    As to the Republican’s supposed lack of accomplishment on entitlements, you overlook Pres. Bush’s establishment of Health-Savings Accounts and a prescription drug plan for seniors that involves a competitive marketplace. Your view of the Republicans involves mainly a faulty generalization and straw-man.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Adam, you’re not paying attention to this matter. In recent months Ryan’s proposals, based on long-term entitlement reforms, have been getting considerable attention from both the pundits and politicians. His is probably the only proposal at the national level that deal scomprehensively with taxes, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Health-Care. and has been scored by CBO. Many Republicans and some Democrats are taking his proposals seriously. He is a ranking member of the House Budget Committee who is well aware that America is heading for a fiscal disaster unless we get control of these vastly underfunded entitlements.

    Should you wish to understand the impact of Ryan’s Roadmap, have a look at Ross Douthat’s New York Times article, Paul Ryan’s Moment., including:

    That’s Ryan’s own view of the matter. “I would argue that I make a lot of concessions here to the left,” he told me. “I’m not trying to win an award from the Cato Institute.” He was quick to acknowledge that his blueprint would still work with somewhat less austerity, and somewhat larger benefits: “I pay off the debt completely, and over time I wipe all these unfunded liabilities off the books. But if we do half that, that’s fantastic.” And he was emphatic, in our conversation, about the plausibility of bipartisan conversation: “I’m just trying to get this debate going. I put this plan out there, [hoping] that other people would do the same thing, and then we can start debating it. There are plenty of ways to fix this thing, and … I’m not suggesting that I have all the answers. I’m suggesting that I have an answer, and I’m hoping other people will bring their answers to the table.”

    As to the Republican’s supposed lack of accomplishment on entitlements, you overlook Pres. Bush’s establishment of Health-Savings Accounts and a prescription drug plan for seniors that involves a competitive marketplace. Your view of the Republicans involves mainly a faulty generalization and straw-man.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Peter (@39), are you reading your own links?

    On the one hand, you claim that, “Many Republicans and some Democrats are taking [Ryan's] proposals seriously.” But the Douthat article you linked to paints a rather different picture:

    Even if there were a politically-feasible path toward the kind of overhaul Ryan has in mind, it’s not clear how many Republican politicians would want to take it. Ryan is circumspect about this problem: He talked hopefully about the “maturation” of the G.O.P., as it goes from being “an opposition party to being the alternative party,” … And when I brought up Republican politicians who have embraced a “Medicare now, Medicare forever” approach to critiquing the Obama health care proposals, Ryan turned grim in a hurry. “I don’t do that,” he said sharply. “I don’t do that.” For now, this honesty leaves him in a relatively lonely position — both within his party, and in Washington more generally. … “I’m trying to encourage people to jump in the pool with me,” Ryan said ruefully. “I’m in there alone right now.” But there are advantages to being in the pool alone, as well. There are hundreds of Republican politicians in Washington, but Ryan is one of the few worth taking seriously on substance.

    I also cannot believe that you rail against “vastly underfunded entitlements” on the one hand, and yet somehow, somehow, find a way of praising Medicare Part D that was passed by the Republicans. I mean, hello?! Part D created a $9.4 trillion unfunded liability over the next 75 years. And you’re praising that?

    And what’s more, you praise Part D as having “a competitive marketplace”, and yet somehow ignore that, by design, Part D prohibits the federal government from negotiating drug prices, leading to not a small amount of waste — the VA pays 58% less for drugs, on average.

    Given all that, I can’t believe you said it was Adam that’s “not paying attention to this matter”.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Peter (@39), are you reading your own links?

    On the one hand, you claim that, “Many Republicans and some Democrats are taking [Ryan's] proposals seriously.” But the Douthat article you linked to paints a rather different picture:

    Even if there were a politically-feasible path toward the kind of overhaul Ryan has in mind, it’s not clear how many Republican politicians would want to take it. Ryan is circumspect about this problem: He talked hopefully about the “maturation” of the G.O.P., as it goes from being “an opposition party to being the alternative party,” … And when I brought up Republican politicians who have embraced a “Medicare now, Medicare forever” approach to critiquing the Obama health care proposals, Ryan turned grim in a hurry. “I don’t do that,” he said sharply. “I don’t do that.” For now, this honesty leaves him in a relatively lonely position — both within his party, and in Washington more generally. … “I’m trying to encourage people to jump in the pool with me,” Ryan said ruefully. “I’m in there alone right now.” But there are advantages to being in the pool alone, as well. There are hundreds of Republican politicians in Washington, but Ryan is one of the few worth taking seriously on substance.

    I also cannot believe that you rail against “vastly underfunded entitlements” on the one hand, and yet somehow, somehow, find a way of praising Medicare Part D that was passed by the Republicans. I mean, hello?! Part D created a $9.4 trillion unfunded liability over the next 75 years. And you’re praising that?

    And what’s more, you praise Part D as having “a competitive marketplace”, and yet somehow ignore that, by design, Part D prohibits the federal government from negotiating drug prices, leading to not a small amount of waste — the VA pays 58% less for drugs, on average.

    Given all that, I can’t believe you said it was Adam that’s “not paying attention to this matter”.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Todd, just add this to your breathless catalog of catalog of items regarding my assorted beliefs.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Todd, just add this to your breathless catalog of catalog of items regarding my assorted beliefs.

  • moallen

    The only unfunded liability the Democrats don’t like is the one passed under a Republican Presidency. It makes me laugh every time I read a left-leaning person attack the Prescription Drug plan. Bush was not a conservative and betrayed limited government ideals on many levels (although this is the tactic of assault – look a conservative passed an unfunded mandate!)- and the DEMOCRATS hate him for it. So why should Republicans ever go along with any more bankrupt Democrat policies – they’ll just hate them for it. Seriously – there’s nothing people hate more than a hypocrite. The conservative Republicans need to stick to their principles, there is no respect in those who betray their constituents.
    The Pro-life issue rises above any other “political” issue I have. My primary political involvement has been centered on the pro-life issue. I would vote for a pro-life Democrat over a pro-abortion Republican – voting early and often. I would not vote for a fake like current Senator Casey who has feigned a pro-life position while betraying his father’s legacy. His story is very disheartening, especially since his Dad was such a strong voice for life.
    I went to a pro-life banquet the other night lead by a woman who is doing something about the situation. She has opened 2 crisis pregnancy centers here in Houston in primarily minority neighborhoods – reaching out in love, sharing the unconditional love of Jesus Christ with these women. Her speech was centered on Jesus Christ. Her clinics – http://www.fifthward.org/ – are staffed by nurses, doctors, and helpers – all volunteers – and they are reaching hundreds and saving children – all while our government funds Planned Parenthood, the number 1 abortion provider in the U.S. I don’t know what her politics are and I don’t care – she has started something amazing, and there are children still alive today because of the caring of those who work at these two urban clinics.

  • moallen

    The only unfunded liability the Democrats don’t like is the one passed under a Republican Presidency. It makes me laugh every time I read a left-leaning person attack the Prescription Drug plan. Bush was not a conservative and betrayed limited government ideals on many levels (although this is the tactic of assault – look a conservative passed an unfunded mandate!)- and the DEMOCRATS hate him for it. So why should Republicans ever go along with any more bankrupt Democrat policies – they’ll just hate them for it. Seriously – there’s nothing people hate more than a hypocrite. The conservative Republicans need to stick to their principles, there is no respect in those who betray their constituents.
    The Pro-life issue rises above any other “political” issue I have. My primary political involvement has been centered on the pro-life issue. I would vote for a pro-life Democrat over a pro-abortion Republican – voting early and often. I would not vote for a fake like current Senator Casey who has feigned a pro-life position while betraying his father’s legacy. His story is very disheartening, especially since his Dad was such a strong voice for life.
    I went to a pro-life banquet the other night lead by a woman who is doing something about the situation. She has opened 2 crisis pregnancy centers here in Houston in primarily minority neighborhoods – reaching out in love, sharing the unconditional love of Jesus Christ with these women. Her speech was centered on Jesus Christ. Her clinics – http://www.fifthward.org/ – are staffed by nurses, doctors, and helpers – all volunteers – and they are reaching hundreds and saving children – all while our government funds Planned Parenthood, the number 1 abortion provider in the U.S. I don’t know what her politics are and I don’t care – she has started something amazing, and there are children still alive today because of the caring of those who work at these two urban clinics.

  • DonS

    Rev. Lehmann @ 38: There are, apparently, 12 pro-life Democrats in all of the House of Representatives, out of some 250+ members. So your odds of finding one to vote for are slim indeed. Moreover, it remains to be seen how many of those 12 will remain true to their principles. We will see in the next few days.

    That being said, there is something to the notion that a person who is both pro-life and a member of the Democratic party is, indeed, somewhat of an independent thinker, and certainly someone to be admired. But, keep in mind that each one of those 12 pro-life Democrats voted for Nancy Pelosi as Speaker of the House. It takes a lot to overcome that one horrific act.

  • DonS

    Rev. Lehmann @ 38: There are, apparently, 12 pro-life Democrats in all of the House of Representatives, out of some 250+ members. So your odds of finding one to vote for are slim indeed. Moreover, it remains to be seen how many of those 12 will remain true to their principles. We will see in the next few days.

    That being said, there is something to the notion that a person who is both pro-life and a member of the Democratic party is, indeed, somewhat of an independent thinker, and certainly someone to be admired. But, keep in mind that each one of those 12 pro-life Democrats voted for Nancy Pelosi as Speaker of the House. It takes a lot to overcome that one horrific act.

  • Sam

    A “horrific act” for which I heartily repent is voting for Bush in 2004; I imagine I will stand before the Lord someday to explain why I voted for a man whose war in Iraq cost the lives of so many Iraqi Christians.

  • Sam

    A “horrific act” for which I heartily repent is voting for Bush in 2004; I imagine I will stand before the Lord someday to explain why I voted for a man whose war in Iraq cost the lives of so many Iraqi Christians.

  • Peter Leavitt

    I’m delighted to have voted for Pres. Bush, a great president who had the wisdom and backbone to see the Iraq War through, defeating Saddam Hussein’s atrocious dictatorship and establishing an Arab democracy in the heart of the Middle East that gives hope to people heretofore oppressed by autocrats.

  • Peter Leavitt

    I’m delighted to have voted for Pres. Bush, a great president who had the wisdom and backbone to see the Iraq War through, defeating Saddam Hussein’s atrocious dictatorship and establishing an Arab democracy in the heart of the Middle East that gives hope to people heretofore oppressed by autocrats.

  • Daniel Gorman

    Tax Cuts for the Rich, Iraq War, Earmarks, and Part D Medicare were payoffs to various Republican constituencies. None of these deficits creators were ever paid for by increased revenue or reduced spending.

    The Democrats are now paying off their constituencies with the economic stimulus bill and an unfunded healthcare bill. The cost of these bills will be peanuts compared to the enormous debt run up by the Republicans. And they will have two positive effects: 1. abortion rates will decline. 2. Democrats will be thrown out of office before they can do any more damage. The nation will return to the gridlock of 1994-2000 that produced record prosperity and an actual surplus in the budget.

  • Daniel Gorman

    Tax Cuts for the Rich, Iraq War, Earmarks, and Part D Medicare were payoffs to various Republican constituencies. None of these deficits creators were ever paid for by increased revenue or reduced spending.

    The Democrats are now paying off their constituencies with the economic stimulus bill and an unfunded healthcare bill. The cost of these bills will be peanuts compared to the enormous debt run up by the Republicans. And they will have two positive effects: 1. abortion rates will decline. 2. Democrats will be thrown out of office before they can do any more damage. The nation will return to the gridlock of 1994-2000 that produced record prosperity and an actual surplus in the budget.

  • Sam

    Peter, never a word from you about the Iraqi Christians. Why?

  • Sam

    Peter, never a word from you about the Iraqi Christians. Why?

  • Peter Leavitt

    Sam, having lost a Grandfather in WW I and an uncle In WWII, along with a father who commanded a naval ship in WW II from which he barely escaped after it was sunk under him with heavy loss of life, for which he grieved until the end of his life, I happen to be well aware of the accidents of hard war. I am, also, a former Marine officer trained not to be sentimental about the cruel exigencies of war.

    As to theIraqi Christians who were slaughtered by cruel Islamists in response to our perfectly just and necessary war in Iraq, I regret this, though it doesn’t affect my view of Pres. Bush’s correct decision to go to war in the slightest.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Sam, having lost a Grandfather in WW I and an uncle In WWII, along with a father who commanded a naval ship in WW II from which he barely escaped after it was sunk under him with heavy loss of life, for which he grieved until the end of his life, I happen to be well aware of the accidents of hard war. I am, also, a former Marine officer trained not to be sentimental about the cruel exigencies of war.

    As to theIraqi Christians who were slaughtered by cruel Islamists in response to our perfectly just and necessary war in Iraq, I regret this, though it doesn’t affect my view of Pres. Bush’s correct decision to go to war in the slightest.

  • Sam

    You need to become a Christian, Peter.

  • Sam

    You need to become a Christian, Peter.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Sam, I happen to be a Christian and am amused at your nonsensical suggestion that I’m not one . Who are you to decide whether one is a Christian or not?

  • Peter Leavitt

    Sam, I happen to be a Christian and am amused at your nonsensical suggestion that I’m not one . Who are you to decide whether one is a Christian or not?

  • Sam

    Peter, this is how I wish more Christians would speak about wars.

    “Our government has declared a military victory in Iraq. As a patriot, I will not celebrate. I will mourn the dead — the American GIs, and also the Iraqi dead, of which there have been many, many more. I will mourn the Iraqi children, not just those who are dead, but those who have been be blinded, crippled, disfigured, or traumatized, like the bombed children of Afghanistan who, as reported by American visitors, lost their power of speech. The American media has not given us a full picture of the human suffering caused by our bombing; for that, we need to read the foreign press.” — Howard Zinn

  • Sam

    Peter, this is how I wish more Christians would speak about wars.

    “Our government has declared a military victory in Iraq. As a patriot, I will not celebrate. I will mourn the dead — the American GIs, and also the Iraqi dead, of which there have been many, many more. I will mourn the Iraqi children, not just those who are dead, but those who have been be blinded, crippled, disfigured, or traumatized, like the bombed children of Afghanistan who, as reported by American visitors, lost their power of speech. The American media has not given us a full picture of the human suffering caused by our bombing; for that, we need to read the foreign press.” — Howard Zinn

  • Peter Leavitt

    Sam, Howard Zinn is a notorious anti-American author whose views I loathe. He has no appreciation for at times the hard necessity of just wars. One ought to mourn the dead in any war, though Christian just war thinkers from Augustine through James Turner Johnson have understood that the hard necessity of war is sometimes necessary in order secure a tranquil order.
    Johnson, in a First Things article wrote as follows:

    All this took place within a maturing theory of politics first outlined by Augustine in City of God, which conceived the good society as one characterized by a just order and thus one at peace both within itself and with other polities similarly justly ordered. Within this conception of politics the ruler’s right to rule is defined by his responsibility to secure and protect the order and justice, and thus the peace, of his own political community and also to contribute to orderly, just, and peaceful interactions with other such communities.

    In the case of Iraq Pres. Bush, after careful consideration and with the substantial agreement of Congress, decided that the brutal and destabilizing regime of Saddam needed to be fought. Over time this war was won, and Iraq bids fair to become a stable democracy in the heart of the Middle East. Compared to most major wars, little American blood was lost. In the long run Pres. Bush will likely be regarded both by Americans and people in the Middle East as the liberator of Iraq. Zinn at best will earn a footnote as corrosive anti-American historian.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Sam, Howard Zinn is a notorious anti-American author whose views I loathe. He has no appreciation for at times the hard necessity of just wars. One ought to mourn the dead in any war, though Christian just war thinkers from Augustine through James Turner Johnson have understood that the hard necessity of war is sometimes necessary in order secure a tranquil order.
    Johnson, in a First Things article wrote as follows:

    All this took place within a maturing theory of politics first outlined by Augustine in City of God, which conceived the good society as one characterized by a just order and thus one at peace both within itself and with other polities similarly justly ordered. Within this conception of politics the ruler’s right to rule is defined by his responsibility to secure and protect the order and justice, and thus the peace, of his own political community and also to contribute to orderly, just, and peaceful interactions with other such communities.

    In the case of Iraq Pres. Bush, after careful consideration and with the substantial agreement of Congress, decided that the brutal and destabilizing regime of Saddam needed to be fought. Over time this war was won, and Iraq bids fair to become a stable democracy in the heart of the Middle East. Compared to most major wars, little American blood was lost. In the long run Pres. Bush will likely be regarded both by Americans and people in the Middle East as the liberator of Iraq. Zinn at best will earn a footnote as corrosive anti-American historian.

  • Sam

    Peter,
    Even the most ardent Bush lackey hesitates to support the invasion of Iraq with the just war theory. Even Rove.
    But not you.
    I’m persuaded that you either do not understand the circumstances of the Iraqi invasion or the principles behind the just war theory, or both. Further, I remain disturbed by your dismissive attitude toward the massive loss of life caused by the Iraqi invasion.

  • Sam

    Peter,
    Even the most ardent Bush lackey hesitates to support the invasion of Iraq with the just war theory. Even Rove.
    But not you.
    I’m persuaded that you either do not understand the circumstances of the Iraqi invasion or the principles behind the just war theory, or both. Further, I remain disturbed by your dismissive attitude toward the massive loss of life caused by the Iraqi invasion.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Sam (@53), you should also know that Peter once referred to the Iraq War as “excellent”.

    Of course, he won’t like that I remembered that, so he might choose to turn the spotlight on me and accuse me of having too much free time or whatever it is he typically accuses me of.

    And while it is a failing that my memory has chosen to remember that fact and not something useful, at least I have never glibly referred to any war as “excellent” (though I will acknowledge, somberly, that some have been necessary). It is extremely difficult for me to see how one could align that word with any of the attitudes Peter says we ought have about wars.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Sam (@53), you should also know that Peter once referred to the Iraq War as “excellent”.

    Of course, he won’t like that I remembered that, so he might choose to turn the spotlight on me and accuse me of having too much free time or whatever it is he typically accuses me of.

    And while it is a failing that my memory has chosen to remember that fact and not something useful, at least I have never glibly referred to any war as “excellent” (though I will acknowledge, somberly, that some have been necessary). It is extremely difficult for me to see how one could align that word with any of the attitudes Peter says we ought have about wars.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Todd, coming from a family with a long military tradition, I regard war as both necessary and excellent. War brings out both the best and worst character in men. The modern illusion, propagated by romantic “peace studies” types, that war is evil and able to be prevented by enlightened souls, ignores the biblical reality that men and nations are fallen and prone to aggression, causing wars from the beginning to probably the end of the temporal plane.

    The highest obligations of political leaders is to strive for justice and the security of their nations in relation to enemies. Pres. Bush, with the approval of Congress, including many Democrats, in excellent fashion, declared war against Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, defeated him, and after the usual mistakes made during wars eventually defeated the insurgency.

    Iraq at present bids fair to develop a credible Arab/Muslim form of democracy that could ultimately be rather influential in the Arab world. Bernard Lewis, the brilliant Princeton emeritus scholar of Islam, advised Pres. Bush that in the long run radical Islam could only be defeated by establishing credible democracies in the Arab world that would give young people a fair political and economic chance. In the long pull of history an excellent war indeed.

    Bush didn’t go to Andover, Yale, and Harvard for nothing, however amusing his countrified veneer that won him elections with the help of his brilliant “architect,” Carl Rove.

  • Peter Leavitt

    Todd, coming from a family with a long military tradition, I regard war as both necessary and excellent. War brings out both the best and worst character in men. The modern illusion, propagated by romantic “peace studies” types, that war is evil and able to be prevented by enlightened souls, ignores the biblical reality that men and nations are fallen and prone to aggression, causing wars from the beginning to probably the end of the temporal plane.

    The highest obligations of political leaders is to strive for justice and the security of their nations in relation to enemies. Pres. Bush, with the approval of Congress, including many Democrats, in excellent fashion, declared war against Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, defeated him, and after the usual mistakes made during wars eventually defeated the insurgency.

    Iraq at present bids fair to develop a credible Arab/Muslim form of democracy that could ultimately be rather influential in the Arab world. Bernard Lewis, the brilliant Princeton emeritus scholar of Islam, advised Pres. Bush that in the long run radical Islam could only be defeated by establishing credible democracies in the Arab world that would give young people a fair political and economic chance. In the long pull of history an excellent war indeed.

    Bush didn’t go to Andover, Yale, and Harvard for nothing, however amusing his countrified veneer that won him elections with the help of his brilliant “architect,” Carl Rove.

  • Daniel Gorman

    Thanks for identifying the real reason for the Iraq War. A war to establish “credible democracies in the Arab world” could never have been sold to the American people even by an Ivy leaguer with an amusing countrified veneer.

    As long as the GOP remains in the grip of a faction that wants the military to kill people in unjust wars, it will never be a pro-life party. As long as the Democratic Party remains in the grip of a faction that wants government agents to kill unborn babies, it will never be a pro-life party.

  • Daniel Gorman

    Thanks for identifying the real reason for the Iraq War. A war to establish “credible democracies in the Arab world” could never have been sold to the American people even by an Ivy leaguer with an amusing countrified veneer.

    As long as the GOP remains in the grip of a faction that wants the military to kill people in unjust wars, it will never be a pro-life party. As long as the Democratic Party remains in the grip of a faction that wants government agents to kill unborn babies, it will never be a pro-life party.

  • Dan Kempin

    Rose, #13,

    Looks like I’m going to have to cancel that vacation in Michigan.

    Turns out a politician’s promise is a good deal different than the reality.

  • Dan Kempin

    Rose, #13,

    Looks like I’m going to have to cancel that vacation in Michigan.

    Turns out a politician’s promise is a good deal different than the reality.


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