NRL News

Making the world safe for pro-abortion Democrats

by | Oct 4, 2016

By Dave Andrusko

Tim Kaine

Tim Kaine

Many of us are avid readers of and admirers of William McGurn, a member of the Wall Street Journal’s editorial board, and a columnist for the WSJ (which trails only USA Today in circulation).

Just prior to the vice presidential debate, McGurn wrote a piece that ran under the headline “Meet Planned Parenthood’s Tim Kaine: The long campaign to make America safe for pro-choice Catholic Democrats.”  To say that is devastating is the understatement of the year.

I will only highlight some of his argument because, believe me, you want to read his column before tonight’s debate between Sen. Kaine and pro-life Indiana Gov. Mike Pence.

For me, someone who is old enough to vividly remember the 1980s when pro-abortion New York Gov. Mario Cuomo won bushels full of kudos from the Media Establishment for his “personally opposed” position, here are the most intriguing two paragraphs:

In sum, Mr. Kaine is a garden variety Catholic Democrat of the early 21st century. In this capacity, the orthodoxies that now define his party and might once have disturbed a practicing Catholic bother him not at all. These include abortion on demand, underwritten with taxpayer dollars.

In some ways Mr. Kaine’s rise represents the yielding of the old pro-choice Catholic Democrat represented by Mario Cuomo—“I am not implying that we should stand by and pretend indifference to whether a woman takes a pregnancy to its conclusion or aborts it” said he at Notre Dame in 1984—to the brave new world where son Andrew Cuomo says that those who oppose abortion “have no place in the state of New York.” Whatever else this is, it marks a comedown from the high hopes of liberal American Catholicism in those heady days before JFK became the first Catholic president.

Mario Cuomo

Mario Cuomo

I’m guessing that Kaine might feel a bit uncomfortable being lumped in with Andrew Cuomo. Not necessarily because he thinks pro-lifers ought to have a place at the table, but because Andrew Cuomo has all of his father’s famous volcanic temper but none of his legendary charm.

Speaking of the late Mario Cuomo (as NRL News wrote many years ago), “In a famous speech at the University of Notre Dame in 1984, Mr. Cuomo demonstrated how to play the shell game: Beyond stating that one is ‘personally opposed’ to abortion, one must lovingly speak of the Catholic Church and vocally profess loyalty to Church teaching on abortion, but then express one’s greatest respect for ‘our unique pluralistic democracy’ and, ultimately, stand firmly with the pro-abortion crowd for ‘choice.’”

By 2016, most pro-abortion Democrats don’t even bother emphasizing that they are supposedly “personally” opposed to abortion, let alone (if they are Catholics) speak of loyalty to the Catholic Church . With a very, very few notable exceptions, the Democratic Party is indistinguishable from NARAL and Planned Parenthood and the rest of the Abortion Establishment. Support for abortion is embedded in the party’s (and its candidates’) DNA.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Kaine still mouths the words. The fig leaf that covered his complete capitulation to the entirety of the pro-abortion was support for the Hyde Amendment. That vanished, after a couple of embarrassingly lame attempts to square the circle, and now, as NRLC President Carol Tobias has said, “Sen. Kaine is good at hiding behind his Catholic background – but no one should be fooled. His record, and his openly declared legislative goals, are as pro-abortion as they come.”

Is that an overstatement? Consider

Like Hillary Clinton, Sen. Kaine is so extreme on abortion he opposes even the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, legislation to protect unborn children from abortion after 20 weeks, when they are capable of feeling excruciating pain during dismemberment or other late abortion methods.”

As a U.S. senator, Kaine has voted against the pro-life position every chance he got. Sen. Kaine voted to allow government funding of abortion providers, and he voted against legislation to require an abortionist to notify at least one parent before performing an abortion on a minor girl from another state.

Kaine took his most extreme pro-abortion action yet with his recent co-sponsorship of the so-called “Women’s Health Protection Act” (S.217), known to pro-lifers as the “Abortion Without Limits Until Birth Act.” This bill would nullify nearly all existing state and federal limitations on regulation of abortion, and prohibit states from enacting meaningful pro-life laws in the future. This revamped version of the long-stalled “Freedom of Choice Act” is a priority of the pro-abortion forces in Washington, D.C.

To return to McGurn, writing on Kaine’s “personal opposed” defense

Has Mr. Kaine ever raised his voice to say he dissents from a worldview in which one life can be taken if it is deemed inconvenient to another’s? To the contrary, Mr. Kaine is that new model of Catholic politician who believes it is the church that must take its creed from the secular culture.

Near the end, McGurn offers this summary judgment:

In this sense, Mr. Kaine might be best understood as the byproduct of a decadeslong effort by liberal Catholicism to make the world safe for pro-choice Catholic Democrats.

For those of us who grew up in working class homes with parents who voted without fail for a very different Democratic Party, this remains a bitter pill to swallow.

Categories: Politics