Patterico's Pontifications

3/12/2009

Another “I Didn’t Mean It” Moment for Michael Steele

Filed under: Abortion,General — Patterico @ 7:43 am



I said that?

RNC Chairman Michael Steele said today that despite telling an interviewer he supports “individual choice” and state-level decisions on abortion, he in fact opposes abortion and supports a Constitutional ban.

You know, I’m not even as worried about the fact that he keeps putting his foot in his mouth as I am about how incoherent his original answer was:

A: The choice issue cuts two ways. You can choose life, or you can choose abortion. You know, my mother chose life. So, you know, I think the power of the argument of choice boils down to stating a case for one or the other.

Q: Are you saying you think women have the right to choose abortion?

A; Yeah. I mean, again, I think that’s an individual choice.

Q; You do?

A: Yeah. Absolutely.

Q: Are you saying you don’t want to overturn Roe v. Wade?

A: I think Roe v. Wade—as a legal matter, Roe v. Wade was a wrongly decided matter.

Q: Okay, but if you overturn Roe v. Wade, how do women have the choice you just said they should have?

A: The states should make that choice. That’s what the choice is. The individual choice rests in the states. Let them decide.

The “individual choice” rests with the states? Does anybody understand that? Anybody?

I think we’re in real trouble if this is the best this guy can do. It’s as if he never thought about the issue before and is making up an answer on the spot.

110 Responses to “Another “I Didn’t Mean It” Moment for Michael Steele”

  1. Steele was saying he is pro federalist on abortion issues. Okay, fair enough for him. He could follow that up with stating the policy for the GOP and leave it at that.

    But nooooooo, he gets all wobbly and then recants? What is that?

    The MSM smells blood from Steele. Hunting for Steele is like going to one of those “game parks” and shooting an animal on a halter in a corral.

    Joe (17aeff)

  2. I thought Steele was more reliably articulate than this…maybe he should get a teleprompter as well.

    I am very tired of the abortion debate and even more tired of the religious wing of the republican party that drives it with the MSM.

    Still, maybe it isn’t enough to be black.

    And where is my editorial cartoon with ten white fingers above a keyboard with Barack faithfully repeating them below…..

    Jack (d9cbc5)

  3. While Steele did not state his position very clearly, one could easily formulate it as a coherent position:

    I would prefer abortion be a matter of individual choice. If I were a member of s State legislature, that is how I would vote. That to me is the proper policy position in a pluralistic society such as ours.

    But that does not mean that my policy preference rises to the level of a Constitutional right. Roe v. Wade was wrongly decided because, with little basis in the Constiution, it elevated the policy preference of a few justices to a Constitutional right — thereby placing the issue beyond the reach of the democratic process.

    Bored Lawyer (44ef84)

  4. I will repeat myself. Steele was chosen as chairman of the RNC because he is a black man who does not scare white people. No other reason.

    Ok, JD, I’m ready …. 😉

    nk (31b2d3)

  5. Bored Lawyer, his support for an amendment banning abortion doesn’t square with position. Steele is all over the map. I’m very disappointed with his performance thus far.

    Pablo (99243e)

  6. his support for an amendment banning abortion doesn’t square with position

    That I had not seen. Where did he ever say that?

    Bored Lawyer (44ef84)

  7. He’s a politician. Thinking is above his pay grade.

    Amphipolis (fdbc48)

  8. The MSM is wise to bring up social conservative issues. It splits the GOP like nothing else.

    Pro choice and pro life folks, we need to get together and admit that government is the problem. We need to take control of congress and cancel as much of this spending as possible in order to get our economy back. Of course, the GOP is only 50% likely to even do that if they do come to power. But abortion is not relevant to that.

    Sadly, while this issue is substantial and most folks care about it, it is not something that the GOP can do anything about. It would make sense for Steele to note that this is just another issue where he is free to disagree with the rest of a tent that he wants to be big, and he wants to be focused on one core principle: limited government.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  9. See the first quote, BL.

    Pablo (99243e)

  10. Actually, the first link contains the actual quote, from a statement Steele released:

    But the Republican Party is and will continue to be the party of life. I support our platform and its call for a Human Life Amendment. It is important that we stand up for the defenseless and that we continue to work to change the hearts and minds of our fellow countrymen so that we can welcome all children and protect them under the law.

    Pablo (99243e)

  11. So, according to this interviewer, overturning Roe V. Wade would remove a woman’s choice in the matter? So, overturning Roe v. Wade makes abortions illegal?

    Wow. I didn’t know that!

    Steve B (5eacf6)

  12. Steele isn’t just tongue tied, he is stupid. How many times can the RNC afford to let this guy walk into the door?

    Ken Blackwell, is that your phone ringing?

    Angry Dumbo (605071)

  13. Who is the RNC going to apologize to now?

    Pastor Warren is probably sitting by the phone waiting for the call from Steele.

    Oiram (983921)

  14. I think the anti-Steele brigade is getting tiresome. If you take out the hyper-parsing of his words, he is saying simply that abortion is a matter of state law and that Roe v. Wade was wrongly decided. That is a long held view of Republicans (Pro-life and otherwise) for a generation. The only contradiction he found himself in was the party plank of the Human Life Amendment, which applies the 14th amendment to the moment of conception. I do not support that plank, and I suspect he does not either, but as the party Chairman, he needs to voice support for the platform as an official matter.

    So give it up people.

    Kurtis Fechtmeyer (7d6780)

  15. Steele sticking his foot in his mouth is getting tiresome. I’d really like to see him knock it off and get down to business.

    Pablo (99243e)

  16. Mario – The RNC should apologize to Republicans.

    Kurtis shall brook no dissent. Submit.

    JD (546b71)

  17. If we must talk about race all the time, please enlighten me as to which black of any party actually is competent, not chosen because of his/her race, not a crook, holds to their actual avowed beliefs? I used to think Condi Rice filled the bill, but her pro-Arabist apologia lost me. And yes, I know there are plenty of honky assclowns in both parties too. And I am talking about pols and bureaucrats- a civilian like Bill Cosby is apparently capable of wisdom and some intellectual honesty. Wonder how many so-called Republican blacks did NOT vote for the magic negro what with racial pride. Ok, the one brilliant black poster on this site likely chose mcCain.

    aoibhneas (0c6cfc)

  18. #16 You are correct DJ, I was making a joke up there.

    Oiram (983921)

  19. Steele is a joke.

    How can you go into any interview as a Republican and not be prepared to clearly articulate and defend your position on abortion?It just boggles the mind.

    Furthermore,as chairman of the GOP its your responsibility to state the GOP’s position on abortion,not your own.

    cleantalkingchimp (bee7fa)

  20. For once I’m not kidding – racist.

    The lack of spacing around punctuation make me 90% sure that “cleantalkingchimp” is not who he appears to be, and that he is trying to stir up trouble here.

    carlitos (3f0da9)

  21. I concur, carlitos.

    JD (e43198)

  22. How can you go into any interview as a Republican and not be prepared to clearly articulate and defend your position on abortion?It just boggles the mind.

    Furthermore,as chairman of the GOP its your responsibility to state the GOP’s position on abortion,not your own.

    It boggles the mind. But it’s predictable. The Republican party doesn’t know what it believes, so it doesn’t know how to express itself.

    The Democratic party, on the other hand, is perfectly clear about what it wants; massive state power with them in control of it. And what it needs to do to get it; diminish or destroy anything that will reduce people’s financial, intellectual, and emotional dependency on it. Such as family, religion, and independent means.

    They’ve finally got the “transformative” figure that can plausibly redefine the Constitution into a set of “positive rights” that mandate their destructive policies. But they need villains.

    Unfortunately, the Republicans are too worried about appearing nice to make a counter-argument. Now the “big tent” isn’t big enough to include those who actually voted against Obama because they really don’t want what they’re selling.

    So, now we have a man in office who’s only previous executive experience was serving on a board started by a man who has stated continuously over the past 40 years that teaching “social justice” instead of education is the best means to end the capitalist system. That’s why Bill Ayers gave up bombing. It was less effective than indoctrination.

    So far, Obama’s response to the economic crisis has been exactly what one would expect, if one reasonably concluded that Obama had a long working relationship with Ayers because he agreed with him. That would be the reasonable conclusion, given the radical church he chose that rejected “middle classness” and denounced “white greed.” It would also be reasonable to conclude he agrees with the worldview of his own wife.

    So he’s hardly one to care about the DOW.

    Yet despite the fact he’s acted in office exactly as predicted, rather than working on a way to counter the man the Republicans spent months proclaiming his basic goodness, declaring a honeymoon, and publicly hoping for his success.

    As Steele is demonstrating, they’ve not even prepared a contingency plan. Except to join in the attack a commentator and his message that’s remained consistent over 20 years.

    Steve (1f4baf)

  23. Steele is annoying me. I live in the same county he does. I think I may make an appointment and school him.

    Vivian Louise (eeeb3a)

  24. And my CHOICE is not to contribute a single cent to the RNC or any Republican until they get serious about conservative principles and show some damn spine to the Democrat Party majority.

    GM Roper (85dcd7)

  25. Don’t do it Vivian… He has a serious case of “hyu-DUUUUUUH” that might be contagious…

    Scott Jacobs (90ff96)

  26. Steele swam, as a politician, in the center-left milieu of Maryland most of his adult life, and had to take a centrist view of most policy issues.
    Now, as the RNCC, he is swimming in a pool that has to reflect the more conservative views that are found outside the NY-DC Corridor, and he just hasn’t gotten up-to-speed with the new “play-book”.
    The question is: Can he?

    AD - RtR/OS (6b685f)

  27. Basically it boils down to this: The republican party could have picked a better-suited individual to lead their party, but they wanted too distract African-Americans from Obama during the next few election cycles. What they ended up with is an idiot at the helm. This just another in a long line of examples detailing how the right just doesn’t get it.

    Both political parties are guilty of completely alienating anyone who isn’t 100% on board with their individual creeds. There is very little room for pro-life factions within the democratic party, and the opposite goes with republicans. I think the two-party system really does a disservice to everybody. It has been articulated time and time again on this site that the republican party doesn’t truly represent a ‘conservative’ party. I think it would be great to see a conservative party. Perhaps Pat Robertson can be its leader. That would be a hoot.

    Ed from PA (6d3080)

  28. Now, as the RNCC, he is swimming in a pool that has to reflect the more conservative views that are found outside the NY-DC Corridor, and he just hasn’t gotten up-to-speed with the new “play-book”.
    The question is: Can he?

    Comment by AD – RtR/OS — 3/12/2009 @ 10:47 am

    Not if Steele thinks the new “play-book” is written by Rush Limbaugh.

    Oiram (983921)

  29. Don’t you just love him? :)

    Emperor7 (0c8c2c)

  30. No, he doesn’t answer to Rush, who (last time I checked) is not a Republican.
    He has to answer to pols such as Jeff Flake, John Ensign, Jeb Hensarling, and others who represent the great middle of America, and to those Registered Republicans that make up the donor base of the party. If he offends the donor base, and the checks stop flowing into the party’s coffers, he will be overseeing the destruction of the party’s chances in future contests.
    That is not what he was selected to do, and is the antithesis of his job-description.

    AD - RtR/OS (6b685f)

  31. Pat Roberston has a law degree from Yale, same as Bill and Hillary.

    Official Internet Data Office (9055f6)

  32. Pat Robertson has a law degree from Yale, same as Bill and Hillary.

    Official Internet Data Office (9055f6)

  33. A post so nice, he commented twice…

    Ed from PA (6d3080)

  34. #30 No, he doesn’t answer to Rush, who (last time I checked) is not a Republican.

    Then why apologize to him AD?

    I agree with the rest of your comment.

    Oiram (983921)

  35. I’m a conservative who buys in to the “penumbra” privacy doctrine. So, I believe that Roe v. Wade was correctly decided, and I believe that no governmental entity is obligated to pay for abortions.

    With that said, I almost agree with Juan #8

    “Pro choice and pro life folks, we need to get together and admit that government is the problem. We need to take control of congress and cancel as much of this spending as possible in order to get our economy back.”

    I would change “in order to get our economy back” to “to keep government out from where it does not belong.”

    To me, the economy is not THE key point. If it were, then we would be forced to conform to all sorts of direct government controls (e.g., for the good of the economy, no one, even those who do not receive government money, can party in Las Vegas except Union officers and members of Congress) when some genius comes along (say a Tim Geithner) who supposedly could make our economy hum if only we all got in line with the program.

    Ira (28a423)

  36. Comment by Oiram — 3/12/2009 @ 11:25 am

    “…why appologize…”
    I suppose because he made a disparaging, personal remark.
    He certainly had no need to kowtow to Rush for his (Steele’s) professional position;
    Rush has no power to either hire or fire Steele.
    It is only those on the Left who have created this strawman that Rush is the “head” of the GOP; whereas,
    Rush himself has only put himself forward as the “voice” of Conservatives, not of the Republican Party.

    AD - RtR/OS (6b685f)

  37. “I think the anti-Steele brigade is getting tiresome. If you take out the hyper-parsing of his words, he is saying simply that abortion is a matter of state law and that Roe v. Wade was wrongly decided.”
    Kurtis F., comment #14

    Hyper-parsing of his words? Really? REALLY? So that’s a BAD thing now? I wish someone had told Patterico that a few weeks ago.

    Rush Limbaugh (3c01f1)

  38. If it wasn’t for hyper-parsing, one would never be able to discern the thoughts of WJC (other than wanting some Booty, that is).

    AD - RtR/OS (6b685f)

  39. #36 Yeah, I “suppose” so AD.

    Oiram (983921)

  40. The point is not abortion, but Steele’s prowess as a spokesmen for the Republican Party. Start with the premise that this is one tough job and then we can look at Steele’s performance. In little more than a month he is a liability not an asset in the press and he has managed to alienate the base of the party. Public speaking was supposed to be his strong suit.

    Steele has done the impossible by doing both looking foolish in the press AND alienating the base. As such he is a drag on a party that cannot afford a drag at this time. Steele should resign so that the party can find a bottom before 2010.

    Angry Dumbo (605071)

  41. Actually, if I recall correctly, Roe V Wade didn’t legalize abortion. Before Roe, whether or not abortion was legal was a matter for individual states. Roe made it legal across the US. Doe V Bolton made abortion legal through all nine months of pregnancy, and for any reason. (Rape, incest, or danger to the life and/ or “health” of the mother. “Health” can be defined as monetary, emotional, whatever. In the end, “health” means “for any reason”.)

    Jewels (dec12d)

  42. And regarding Steele leaving the party… like it or no, that would be a monumental mistake. The Republican party ousting it’s first African American chairman? Besides which, the only thing Steele is guilty of right now is bumbling his words in a few interviews. His interview skills do need work, but it’ no reason to oust the guy.

    Jewels (dec12d)

  43. This thread brings back such fond memories of Howlin’ Howie Dean calling the majority of Americans who don’t support gay marriage bigors and homophobes after a New York court decision. My leg started tingling when he said “I hate Republicans.”

    Who can forget Howlin’ Howie’s medley of accusations of racism directed at the Republican Party? Not me.

    Sure, Steele’s fumbling around some, but compared to Howlin’ Howie he’s doing great.

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  44. I think the anti-Steele brigade is getting tiresome. If you take out the hyper-parsing of his words, he is saying simply that abortion is a matter of state law and that Roe v. Wade was wrongly decided. That is a long held view of Republicans (Pro-life and otherwise) for a generation.

    This is exactly right. The whole Roe v Wade debate is about whether states can decide this issue and it should have been left there. Abortion was legal in California in 1969, three years before RvW. The mistake was to nationalize the issue and that is what set off the 35 year guerilla war.

    Steele should keep a lower profile for a while but this comment is reassuring.

    Like it or not, his charisma and personality are going to be a big part of how he attempts to sell the GOP message. Personally, I think that’s a good thing. And for those who worry that it will obscure or overtake the conservative message, I say “relax.” I thought his riffs on freedom, individual liberty, choosing life, were all very strong – I do believe, firmly, that’s he’s one of us.

    I also loved his discussion of the weird non-relationship with Obama. More grist for the mill for those (like me) who see the President as a political pod person; he clearly was (and is?) threatened by the idea of a peer relationship with Steele. Come on Barack, you’re the man now. Have the brother over for a soda.

    Obama does look like a pod person to me.

    Mike K (8df289)

  45. Sure, Steele’s fumbling around some, but compared to Howlin’ Howie he’s doing great.

    Yeah, because the democrats have not done so well in recent elections under Dean…

    Ed from PA (c313be)

  46. #45 :)

    Oiram (983921)

  47. “Yeah, because the democrats have not done so well in recent elections under Dean…”

    Edpa – Predictable response. We’re comparing words at this point right? Am I going too fast for you?

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  48. #47 LOL

    Oiram (983921)

  49. Is it a predictable response? Was it predictable because it is quite natural for one to recognize the gaping holes in your arguments and call you on them?

    Ed from PA (c313be)

  50. Is it a predictable response? Was it predictable because it is quite natural for one to recognize the gaping holes in your arguments and call you on them?

    Comment by Ed from PA — 3/12/2009 @ 1:36 pm

    Come on daley, don’t take that laying down man.

    You’ve got a lot in your arse…..nal

    Use it! (I need the laughter)

    Oiram (983921)

  51. Does anyone know of a live copy of Allahpundit’s “Dean-O” series? When I check the wayback machine’sarchives I lose most of the images. It’s from the 2004 primaries. Good stuff.

    carlitos (3f0da9)

  52. Steele needs to have answers to these questions ready to go when they are presented. His tendency is the opposite of Obama’s: Obama speaks slowly, Steele sometimes alarmingly quickly. And very rarely does Obama speak before a question is fully formed unless he detects he can’t spin it his way. In such instances, he will try and refocus the question before it is completed or restate the question so that it fits his ready-made answer, regardless of the questioners’ original meaning.

    What we’re witnessing now is what would have happened if Barack Obama was a conservative — he wouldn’t have gotten the pass for any feel-good mushy-middle purple-states hoo-ha that contradicted his personal history or legislative record. His gaffes wouldn’t have been covered over on-the-fly (e.g. Stephanopoulos correcting his “My muslim faith” remark).

    All of y’all have got to stop losing your schtuff every time Steele says something that proves he’s not The Anti-Obama. Right now, we’ve got someone who actually wants the maddog job.

    L.N. Smithee (843bee)

  53. Comment by L.N. Smithee — 3/12/2009 @ 2:00 pm
    Word!

    Emperor7 (0c8c2c)

  54. I do not believe he should be ousted but rather have some training in public speaking. In this he very much reminds me of Palin – both capable and intelligent but lacking in articulating a cohesive thought.

    The Republican party ousting it’s first African American chairman?

    It is interesting to note that on both sides of the aisle, racial politics may be more at play than ever before. It’s manifestation is more subtle, less overt, more – dare I say – nuanced.

    Dana (137151)

  55. Having wrote what I did @ 2:00 pm, I do have to say that as I was listening to him being grilled by Laura Ingraham on my mp3 player, I started shouting out loud as he said he heard D.L. Hughley’s “Nazi Germany” remark but deliberately let it go. That’s the wrong approach – that BS has gone on long enough too long, and it’s got to be smacked down with great prejudice every time it’s spoken from this point forward.

    Steele should have said to Hughley, “Hold on! What the hell does that mean?” Unless Hughley backed down from the original insult, he would have been forced to provide elaborations that could only have been exponentially more outrageous and ridiculous. Missing that golden opportunity, Steele instead got himself into trouble by insulting a popular representative of the conservative movement.

    Steele at this point is not as gaffe-prone as Howard Dean was in his early stewardship of the Demagogic Party, but the difference is that Dean didn’t bash his own base. He said he hated Republicans and that they were racists. If any Dems got up and left the party in a huff, it didn’t hit any newswires.

    L.N. Smithee (843bee)

  56. Steele is Exhibit 1A that the Republican Party should be about the message not the messenger. Mr. Steele may be a great spokesmen (then again the people of Maryland may know more than the RNC), but he sure needs to be reminded of the message.

    A party leader should not need cue cards to recite the party line.

    Angry Dumbo (605071)

  57. BTW-Pat, you’ve gotta fix the clock. It’s a half-hour fast.

    L.N. Smithee (843bee)

  58. Now, as the RNCC, he is swimming in a pool that has to reflect the more conservative views that are found outside the NY-DC Corridor, and he just hasn’t gotten up-to-speed with the new “play-book”.
    The question is: Can he?

    I wouldn’t go there if I were you.

    Al Campanis (3f0da9)

  59. Everybody, gather ’round. Let me illustrate my strategy in real time.

    Now, as the RNCC, he is swimming in a pool that has to reflect the more conservative views that are found outside the NY-DC Corridor, and he just hasn’t gotten up-to-speed with the new “play-book”.

    The question is: Can he?

    I wouldn’t go there if I were you.

    Comment by Al Campanis — 3/12/2009 @ 2:31 pm

    Hold on! What the hell do you mean by that, “Al Campanis”?

    L.N. Smithee (843bee)

  60. Edpa – What holes? You’re attempting to compare things that can’t be compared, which is as I said typical. Has Steele been in charge through an election cycle? No.

    Did my comment regarding Dean start out by recalling his words? Yes.

    Am I still going too fast for you?

    Do you live in the Poconos? Have you taken too many Skee Balls to the head?

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  61. Mom Blogs – Blogs for Moms…

    Anonymous (5fa9a5)

  62. Sorry, LN Smithee, that was me and it was in bad taste. I apologize. In in the future I use an alias for a bad joke I will include it in the comment, not change the name.

    carlitos (3f0da9)

  63. “If”

    carlitos (3f0da9)

  64. No, you were suggesting that Howard Dean has not been successful, which is clearly not supported by the results under his leadership.

    Ed from PA (619e40)

  65. 64 was directed towards daley… if anybody was wondering.

    Ed from PA (619e40)

  66. I actually played Skee Ball once – there’s a big place about three miles from where I live. I remember much drinking, and a lot of fun – but no cranial damage (from the skee ball, I mean).

    Dmac (49b16c)

  67. Shocka – Even when daley spelled it out for EfP, it still tried to take daley’s words and twist it into something he did not say.

    JD (6864d5)

  68. “No, you were suggesting that Howard Dean has not been successful, which is clearly not supported by the results under his leadership.”

    Edpa – Are you now calling me a liar?

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  69. Nah, daley, it is just being aggressively dishonest.

    JD (6864d5)

  70. JD – Good, I thought it was me.

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  71. Eddy’s MO is always the same – obfuscate the commenter’s words, and rephrase into something beyond all meaning from the original intent.

    Dmac (49b16c)

  72. Dmac – Thanks. I don’t usually talk with him. I thought I was clear as JD indicates. Edpa’s just a twatwaffle like Lovey.

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  73. Well, you claim that Steele has been much more successful than Dean. I am just wondering what evidence (other than nothing) you have to back this up. I hardly think that makes me a twatwaffle, you snivelling little child. But, if you wish to stomp your feet and claim you did not infer something when you clearly did, I guess your ignorant and bullheaded co-commentators will gladly back you up, right EZ-mac?

    Ed from PA (7906b8)

  74. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/29658424/wid=18298287

    Weird. You guys really do think that most scientists are starting to change their minds about global warming/climate change. How does that sand taste? Must be dark down there…

    Ed from PA (7906b8)

  75. EfP’s last 2 comments are an overt admission that EfP is intentionally picking a fight, lying, and distorting daley’s words beyond recognition. Thank you for admitting that, EfP.

    JD (abe6ab)

  76. Ed, I’m going to ask you something…

    If the current models they use to predict the future can not accurately model the PAST using recorded data, why do we think they get the future right?

    Scott Jacobs (90ff96)

  77. It is settled science, Scott. There is no “on this hand, on the other hand”. There is no debate. Hell, EfP does not even get the irony of it conflating global warming and climate change. Hint, EfP. The term climate change was the fallback position once it became clear that the AGW shreiking was without foundation.

    JD (abe6ab)

  78. Well, you claim that Steele has been much more successful than Dean.

    Edpa – Grow up, Peppermint Patty.

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  79. Not that unusual. Lots of anti-choicers get caught using the popular choice language. What with the ‘choose life’ campaigns out there.

    imdw (8bb588)

  80. JD: Hint-if the globe starts getting really damn toasty, that is climate change.

    Ed from PA (d99227)

  81. The “individual choice” rests with the states? Does anybody understand that? Anybody?

    I do. He didn’t do a great job of explaining his position, but the position itself makes sense: women should, as a matter of policy, have an individual right to abortion, but that right has no grounding in the Constitution, and therefore, it should be up to the states to decide whether or not to to recognize it. That’s basically the same view Clarence Thomas expressed on sodomy in his dissenting opinion in Lawrence v. Texas, and it’s also my view on helmet laws, seatbelt laws, sodomy laws, prostitution laws, and just about every other victimless crime law under the sun.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  82. Ditto to what xlrq said.

    The Republican Party needs to take the middle ground on abortion — that’s where the voters are.

    Kevin Murphy (0b2493)

  83. 80 oh yeah, algore says the agw science is settled, but how does he explain the cooling trend of past ten years or all the bogus cooked experiments and false data interpretation? Feck the greens, agw alarmists and assorted liberal special interest groups. What has changed from Clinton years when Senate voted 95-0 against Kyoto treaty idea? The Euroweenies play all those carbon games and are worse off than US. And of course India and China get a pass on clean air rules.

    aoibhneas (0c6cfc)

  84. When they start having bikini contests in February on the Olympic Peninsula, I’ll start to take AGW seriously.

    AD - RtR/OS (5c10b1)

  85. […] Some have criticized Steele’s words and I think misunderstood them. Here is what I think he meant (actual words with my comments in italics). In an interview with GQ, his words follow the A. […]

    In defense of GOP Chairman Michael Steele « Smash Mouth Politics (186bd9)

  86. “He didn’t do a great job of explaining his position, but the position itself makes sense: women should, as a matter of policy, have an individual right to abortion, but that right has no grounding in the Constitution, and therefore, it should be up to the states to decide whether or not to to recognize it.”

    If its good policy that women have a right to abortion, Congress can make it so by passing a law, and can preempt any state law that says otherwise. No matter whether this right is in the constitution or not. The steele position is BS by republicans who can’t face up to how unpopular their anti-choicers are.

    imdw (ecbfcd)

  87. 84-And if Obama had inherited a Taliban-free Afghanistan, and the economy that Bush did, I would believe that republican presidents are a good idea. But… we all know the story. :-)

    Ed from PA (6d3080)

  88. Edpa – If Clinton had handed Bush a Taliban-free Afghanistan, and economy not headed into a recession, I agree, the situation probably would have been entirely different. You have to plat with the cards you are dealt, not whine about imperfections.

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  89. IMDW:

    If its good policy that women have a right to abortion, Congress can make it so by passing a law, and can preempt any state law that says otherwise.

    That’s one option, sure. Another would be for Congress to actually adhere to that pesky Constitution they facetiously swore to uphold, and leave the issue to the states. Personally, I prefer the constitutional option, but that’s just me.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  90. “That’s one option, sure. Another would be for Congress to actually adhere to that pesky Constitution they facetiously swore to uphold, and leave the issue to the states.”

    Oh so you think such a law would be unconstitutional. Or just bad federalist policy?

    imdw (603c39)

  91. Xrlq – You should know better than to think you will get an honest discussion with this one.

    JD (0be158)

  92. IMDW, I’m saying it is unconstitutional AND bad federalist policy. The language of the Tenth Amendment could scarcely be clearer. The written Constitution doesn’t say anything about abortion, or anything that could reasonably be stretched to include it. Therefore, it is a power “not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States” and therefore “reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

    Note that I’m NOT saying that the federal statute you propose would actually struck down in court. Since the FDR era, courts have done a horrendous job enforcing the Tenth Amendment, bending over backwards and sideways to uphold just about everything challenged under it. I do not consider the questions “Is it constitutional?” and “Will the courts let us get away with it?” to be equivalent, but YMMV.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  93. “The written Constitution doesn’t say anything about abortion, or anything that could reasonably be stretched to include it.”

    I’ve often heard opponents of choice talk about the abortion industry, congress clearly has the power to regulate this industry. Not to mention that abortion is part of medical practice, hospitals, medical education, and for some, quite a bit of travel. Congress can decide that this is an industry that will exist nationally. Just like it can decide to reach deep into a southern motel and tell it not to discriminate. So we don’t have to worry about “not delegated to the United States.”

    This ‘left to the states’ is more hogwash — you sometimes see pro-choicers, not just anti-choicers, buy into it. The reality is that these days, Congress can legislate on abortion — they do pass abortion legislation.

    imdw (de7003)

  94. I told you, Xrlq.

    JD (2ed087)

  95. “I told you, Xrlq.”

    If anyone knows anything about ‘honest discussion’ its this one.

    imdw (803b85)

  96. Comment by daleyrocks — 3/14/2009 @ 7:10 am

    That is a poor, poor excuse, Daley. FDR inherited a very poor situation and turned it around (including Nazi’s in charge in Germany, and a crappy economy). The economy wasn’t really in recession until Bush had his chance to completely ignore any warning signs and trash any opportunity that may have presented itself to turn it around. Eh, that’s a republican for ya. You don’t really have to accomplish anything, because your 20-percenters will fabricate, lie, and argue you into being one of the best presidents ever.

    Ed from PA (d99227)

  97. Shorter IMDW: if courts will let us get away with it, it’s legal.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  98. “Shorter IMDW: if courts will let us get away with it, it’s legal.”

    Truly, JD knew what he was talking about. Is there any doubt that abortion is about as national an industry as others normally regulated?

    imdw (c990d8)

  99. What “others normally regulated” are you talking about? Very few businesses are primarily regulated by the federal government. Abortion is no exception, as doctors are licensed by the states, not by Washington. Besides, the issue of abortion rights isn’t about regulating the industry and you know it.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  100. “esides, the issue of abortion rights isn’t about regulating the industry and you know it.”

    What the ‘issue is’ is irrelevant to the question of what power the constitution grants. The power is one to regulate commerce. The feds can create a scheme for licensing and regulating doctors or banks or insurance companies. That states do so as well or to some extent doesn’t really change that the feds can do it in today’s economy. The same for a medical procedure like abortion. If congress can pass the ban on “partial birth abortion” then it can also pass laws to guarantee access to abortion services.

    imdw (017d51)

  101. I’m not a big fan of the federal partial birth abortion (no sneer quotes needed) ban, either. Again, if your idea of The Constitution is whatever courts will let slip, then why bother having the executives and the legislators swear loyalty to it in the first place? Anything they pass that violates the IMDW-Constitution will be struck down anyway, so no harm no foul. Right?

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  102. “Again, if your idea of The Constitution is whatever courts will let slip, then why bother having the executives and the legislators swear loyalty to it in the first place?”

    Its not really ‘whatever will let slip.” I’ve made a very simple case that regulating abortion is a regulation of a national industry. A regulation of interstate commerce. Lots of things are interstate commerce, or necessary and proper to regulate interstate commerce, these days. Blame modernity, not the courts.

    imdw (de7003)

  103. “…Blame modernity, not the courts.”

    Is this just another variation of the “Officer Krupke” defense?

    AD - RtR/OS (dae131)

  104. Modernity has nothing to do with it. If affirming or denying anyone’s “right” to bang some guy she barely knows without protection, and then kill the kid off without the inconvenience of having to cross a state line is “interstate commerce,” then with all due respect WTF isn’t?

    No need to answer. You gave the answer away in Comment 86, when you called on Congress to mandate everything you think is “good policy,” whether it has anything to do with foreign or interstate commerce or not. Which would be fine, if you were arguing for a constitutional amendment rather than simply urging Congress to unilaterally declare the country the United State of America.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  105. Balkanizationist!

    nk (0a1ba0)

  106. “Modernity has nothing to do with it.”

    Sure it does. Nowadays, and much more than during the founding, lots of industries and activity exist in interstate commerce. And certainly lots of things exist once you include what is ‘necessary and proper’ to regulate this interstate commerce.

    ‘. If affirming or denying anyone’s “right” to bang some guy she barely knows without protection, and then kill the kid off without the inconvenience of having to cross a state line is “interstate commerce,”’

    See, it seems like you’re letting your views on abortion (and who gets them) get in the way here. Why are you still talking about ‘rights’? I’m here saying congress can simply legislate on this topic, ‘right’ or not, providing access or denying it.

    I think few if any things are outside the scope of interstate commerce — or rather, commerce “among the several states” — and what is necessary and proper to regulate that. That’s not the fault of the founders or of the courts. That’s a feature of our modern economy. Of the pervasive and borderless nature of commerce.

    imdw (de7003)

  107. Yawn. Kindly explain how interstate commerce would be disrupted if all oddly-numbered states (either by order of admission, or alphabetically, or whatever) allowed abortion on demand up to 3 months after the kid was born, while the other half prohibited morning after pills and everything that followed. And while you’re at it, perhaps you’d care to explain how “interstate commerce” changed so radically during FDR’s tenure as to justify the shift that occurred then, not now.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  108. “Kindly explain how interstate commerce would be disrupted if all oddly-numbered states (either by order of admission, or alphabetically, or whatever) allowed abortion on demand up to 3 months after the kid was born, while the other half prohibited morning after pills and everything that followed.”

    I don’t see why its relevant that it be ‘disrupted.’ The power is to regulate commerce. Perhaps you’re thinking of the ‘dormant commerce clause.’

    If a business wants to create a morning after pill, ship it, distribute it, or sell it at its many stores throughout the US, that’s certainly in interstate commerce. And necessary and proper to regulating that (whether it is to allow it or to ban it) is the regulation of the consumer purchase of the drug (whether we are prohibiting it or allowing it). Same with other services and goods associated with abortion.

    “And while you’re at it, perhaps you’d care to explain how “interstate commerce” changed so radically during FDR’s tenure as to justify the shift that occurred then, not now.”

    That the courts realized reality is that many things are interstate commerce, or necessary and proper to its regulation, during FDR’s reign doesn’t mean that’s when this reality came to be. It just means that’s when the four horsemen of the apocalypse lost their majority.

    imdw (4f0ff0)

  109. The “switch in time that saved nine” had nothing to do with recognizing the phony “realities” that are the subject of your hallucinations, and everything to do with recognizing the political realities of preserving their institution against a strongman. By your logic, EVERYTHING is interstate commerce, and the states might as well close up shop.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  110. “The “switch in time that saved nine” had nothing to do with recognizing the phony “realities” that are the subject of your hallucinations, and everything to do with recognizing the political realities of preserving their institution against a strongman. ”

    I’d always thought the switch occurred after the FDR proposal was defeated. But whichever, we still have economic reality and the court’s reality being different.

    “By your logic, EVERYTHING is interstate commerce, and the states might as well close up shop.”

    Just about everything is, yup. But why the states would close shop, I don’t know. States right now regulate things that are quite clearly interstate.

    imdw (e8b540)


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