Romney is no Reagan When it Comes to Abortion

lovestory.jpgFirst we had Giuliani and his Washington state supporters aping Reagan with this line — “My 80% friend is not my 20% enemy” — a line falsely attributed to Reagan Now we have Romney claiming that his change of heart on abortion is similar to Reagan’s. Romney says his position is, “exactly what Ronald Reagan did. As governor, he was adamantly pro-choice. He became pro-life as he experienced life.”  Washington state republicans took up the same line in favor of Romney at the Evergreen Leadership Conference earlier this year and continue to try and sell it to us to this day as Garry Pagon says in this post — “Ronald Reagan signed the most liberal abortion law in the nation when he was governor of California, and only later changed his mind to become a champion for the right to life as President. If we cannot rally and welcome new converts to the cause, we will never have the political strength we need to change the law.” 

Like the Giuliani 80/20 line, this revisionist history defies reality and takes advantage of the electorate’s short memory or ignorance of the public abortion debate pre Roe v. Wade. 

When Reagan signed California’s abortion law there was no “pro-choice” movement, just a pro-abortion movement. With the sexual revolution of the 60’s the demand for abortion increased, especially on the part of men. There were many doctors doing abortions illegally who saw the huge money making potential in legalized abortion. This was the situation here in our own state of Washington. Planned Parenthood of King County (Lee Minto who filed I-20) partnered with politicians (Dan Evans, Joel Pritchard, Slade Gorton) and local doctors performing illegal abortions (Dr. A. Frans Koome) and came up with a legislative strategy to legalize abortion. The marketing slogans of “choice”, “women’s health”, “women’s liberation”, “every child a wanted child”, etc. were conjured up to put words in the mouths of politicians and the public so they could mindlessly pin a smiley face on abortion. The slogan “Saving Children is Statist” wasn’t invented until 2007. 

Reagan was not part of this movement. 

Conversely there was no pro-life movement. The right to life was something that most American’s had taken for granted up to this point. Recognizing the abortion movement for what it was — a radical attack on the human person emanating from the nation that had liberated Hitler’s death camps — was a new concept that the public still can’t seem to get their minds around. Hence, the desperate and emotional attachment to the word “choice”.  To this day it’s as if the entire nation has come to suffer from a communal case of Stockholm syndrome.

It is understandable that in this environment — a nation proud of its human rights achievements, freedoms, and superiority; with a well financed, organized, motivated, politically savvy pro-abortion movement; combined with a pro-abortion drum-beat from a media, political, legal, and medical elite hell-bent on legalization, no pro-life movement, no knowledge of where abortion would lead the country — Reagan signed the law he did. He was anything but “adamantly pro-choice” and from the sound of it confused and conflicted. He had neither full knowledge of the intent of the bill or the carnage that was to come. Furthermore, he was under incredible pressure to act so that it appears he could not have given full consent of the will. 

We also need to remember all the promises made by the abortion industry: less abortion, wanted children would mean less child abuse, healthier women, healthier children, better relations between men and women, more freedom, better sex, more better sex, oh and don’t forget really great sex. Promise Americans better sex and they’ll practically kill their first-born to get it. 

Romney can claim none of these mitigating circumstances.  

Thirty-five years after Roe and none of the abortion movement’s promises have come true. Thirty-five years after Roe the number of abortions is approaching 50 million in the US alone. Thirty-five years after Roe we know that abortion is not safe. Thirty-five years after Roe we can see a human child developing in the womb. Thirty-five years after Roe and AG Christine Gregoire gives nurses free reign to hand out RU-486 so a women can lie alone in a back-bedroom abortion while her dead child bleeds from her body. Thirty-five years after Roe a band of nobodies called the WA state board of pharmacy decides to take the Constitutional right not to participate in the killing of another person from the pharmacy profession. Thirty-five years after Roe the former Governor of Washington, Booth Gardner, begins an attack on the old and infirm and defenseless through legalized euthanasia. Thirty-five years after Roe and the Washington State Superintendant of Education is about to unleash on school children the idea that killing a child is equal to the act of giving life to a child. Thirty-five years after Roe and the University of Washington begins breeding humans for the express purpose of harvesting their body parts. Thirty-five years after Roe and the nation’s scientists begin cross-breeding humans with animals for….what?..better sex?

That’s the environment in which Mitt Romney now wants to play footsie with the pro-life movement. That’s the environment in which Mitt Romney wants to “send it back to the states.” That’s the environment in which he wants to claim he’s just like Reagan. Real converts to the pro-life cause know and understand what is at stake. We welcome converts to the cause but they need to have the will to act if they are going to be given the power to act.

Mr. Romney you sound like a well-meaning man who wants to do the right thing but 35 years after Roe it’s later that you think.

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7 thoughts on “Romney is no Reagan When it Comes to Abortion

  1. Reagan did sign a very liberal pro-abortion law while governor. He did change his mind, many years later, conveniently right before he ran for President. Where is the revisionist history. Frankly, your post here is really lacking.

    I read and re-read this and tried to figure out what the idea is here? I think it is (1) a defense of Reagan for being clueless and (2) an attack on Romney for not converting to a pro-life position 35 years ago. Both ideas are poorly supported and nonsensical.

    Reagan let the abortion genie out of the bottle in CA as one of the first few governors to sign pro-abortion laws and then, many years later, right before running for president, decided he was pro-life. As president, he failed to put the genie back in the bottle. Pro-life senators pushed for repealing Roe v. Wade early in Reagan’s first term but got fillibustered. Reagan did little after that to push the issue forward on the domestic agenda — even his Supreme Court nominees were not too hot.

    Somehow Reagan is given a pass above because of mitigants such as: “When Reagan signed California’s abortion law there was no “pro-choice” movement, just a pro-abortion movement” or “Promise Americans better sex and they’ll practically kill their first-born to get it.” Those excuses don’t justify what Reagan did as governor and why his conversion is any different than Romney’s. Yes, times change but they have changed such that being pro-life is actually a tougher position to take, not an easier one, on the public stage.

    I liked Reagan as a president. I don’t see Romney’s conversion being any more of a problem than Reagan’s. Reagan could have converted earlier, too; however, he came out of a socially liberal time and place and waited until he was eyeing a run for the presidency to go all out publicly pro-life — sound familiar? Your selective memory and illogical support doesn’t do any justice to your attempt at revising revisionist history. I don’t think it’s ever too late to become pro-life. Saying otherwise is a silly stance! Just say you don’t like Romney — that’s fine. Just don’t do it on such a flimsy basis.

  2. Christian,
    Thanks for posting. You’ve made several things very clear.
    Despite reading and re-reading you still don’t understand Mary’s article.
    You don’t understand Roe v Wade.
    You don’t understand or can’t remember Reagan’s administration and…
    You don’t have a clue about Mitt Romney.

    But thanks for playing. And feel free to return any time.

  3. Why is it Doug, when you are confronted with your distortions, you dodge the specific charges??!!! “Thanks for playing”? this is all you have? Come on man, I expect better from you.

  4. RBN
    I’ve confronted you, it seems, dozens of times, O, faceless one. You, and a thousand like you, form ideas about politics by reading articles in the dark and fantasizing. You imagine what politicians are like that you’ve never met and never dealt with and your ideas are not informed by philosophical or historic truth, but, rather, your narrow, materialist education and the influence on you of media that was conceived to manipulate you into giving your rights away to make way for tyranny.

    It is quite obvious this guy has no clue what he’s writing about, but has some rooting interest that was stung by the article and he clearly, as he says, doesn’t understand it. Perhaps he is a shallow Mormon or has been captivated by Romney’s image on TV and is offended by being made to confront the truth about the Republican Clinton.

    “Pro-life senators pushed for repealing Roe v. Wade”?? It’s absurd on its face. Roe v. Wade isn’t a law and cannot be “repealed” by any Senatorial or Presidential action. He’s simply making up something that he thinks sounds passable. He has no sense at all for what the Reagan Administration did and under what pressure. I bet he was under twenty when GHW Bush took office. Yet he has the temerity to smear the Greatest President of the last hundred and fifty years? The man who saved the nation in an hour of deep peril and set us, miraculously, back on course?
    And I’m supposed to let that slide? Or waste my time going through it line by line documenting all the reasons the myriad things his ambiguities might mean are wrong? Idiotic, even?
    AND YOU GIVE THIS CREDENCE?
    Let me ask you two things.
    1. When you asked me about my membership on the King County Central Committee, you did something similar to this poster. You obviously had no idea what you were talking about, or how the Party is run, but, undeterred by your ignorance, you asked me, “Are you exageratting a bit, or simply not telling the truth?” That question assumed a lie that you had invented, to wit, that there were only two possiblilities, I was either exaggerating or lying.
    But I was telling the truth, and it was your question that was based on your lying fabrication.
    Now that you have been, by my explanation, rebuked, why haven’t you apologized?
    2. Given that you are refuted and exposed over and over again on this site, why do you never learn? Do you have absolutely no interest in the truth about politics?

    Now you are claiming I have been “confronted with my distortions” by this poster. What on earth are you talking about?

  5. His post was very specific, and all you can do is names and insult me?

    Here is a debate for you Doug; (It really should not be this difficult for you) state why you think Reagan as governor was any different than Romeys changing postions.

  6. It’s already been done, beautifully, in the article, above, with one exception.
    Mary gives Romney a pass that he sincerely changed his mind. I don’t. Since Romney established a track record, while he was the liberal Governor of Massachusetts, of coming down, firmly, on BOTH sides of issues, I don’t think you can believe anything he has to say on anything as a matter of principle.

    Romney asks us to believe he has changed his position on virtually everything (except his fascist policies and inclination, like on health care, which he confuses with conservatism), concurrent with his conversion to a Presidential Candidate. Abortion, gay rights, gun control, illegal immigration. Overnight, we are to believe, he went from our opponent to one of us on key core issues. Overnight we are to accept him, not just as a new convert, but as our leader. And he says that even while maintaining his support for Government-imposed universal health care. How stupid are we?

    If you believe that, George Bush has an international freeway for you to invest in.

  7. I think the author of this article (which was not Doug) explained the difference between Romney and Reagan. The scientific knowledge that is now available about fetal development and the philosophical arguments that support the personhood of pre-born children (to which Reagan would eventually contribute) were not as well known then.

    Romney, however, living in a post-Reagan era, has always claimed to be “personally pro-life” and yet he turned off his personal beliefs to operate as a governor and heavily courted the pro-abortion lobby when running for governor. In other words, he supported child killing with full knowledge. He has not come to the complete pro-life position, even cosmetically.

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