A Republican candidate should have a clear position on Abortion. Here is mine.
Roe vs. Wade is the law of the land regarding abortion and has been since the supreme court ruled in 1973, (43 years ago) that on the basis of the right to privacy, a woman had the right to an abortion. Included in the final ruling was a provision that states could ( but don’t have to ) apply restrictions to abortion after the fetus was “viable”, around 24 weeks. This invalidated many state and federal laws against abortion. In 2015 the House passed a bill that would change the “viable” date to 20 weeks, but the bill died in the Senate, so there have been no significant changes to Roe in 43 years.
There is no indication that there is any movement in the Supreme Court to repeal Roe that is likely to succeed. If Roe is repealed it would revert back to a state issue and few states would now ban abortions. Federal restrictions on abortions would also be possible if Roe is repealed but significant restrictions beyond those already put in place by reality are unlikely. The reality is that while first trimester abortions are readily available, it is already very difficult to find someone to perform a late term abortion.
7/12/14 I was told my position was not clear so I am adding emphasis. It was here but not stated clearly. A significant majority in this country believe that first trimester abortions (about 12 weeks) should be legal. I share that opinion. It looks to me like that is not going to change after 43 years. If this disturbs you, please read on and you will find points of agreement regarding who pays and parental notification.
In our country, at this time, ideas travel in sets.
A significant minority of people in our country believe that abortion at any time after conception is murder. It is a powerful moral consideration that I respect. It makes some of them single issue voters. In my case, I would like to convince these people that on the abortion issue they consider today’s reality and my positions on facets of this issue, stated below, and consider voting for me anyhow, since we otherwise most likely share the same set of ideas.
I believe that no one should have to pay for someone else’s abortion, it is a matter of conscience. Some would argue that since they don’t like our defense policy they should not have to pay that portion of their taxes that support the defense department. The counter argument is that like it or not, they directly benefit from the defense of the nation and thus should have to pay. The same counter argument cannot be made in the case of abortion. There is no general societal benefit to an abortion. I would vote accordingly. For example, I would vote to prohibit federal funding for the Planned Parenthood organization which is a leading provider of abortion services.
I would vote to prohibit the late term abortion method known as “partial birth abortion”, where a near full term baby is delivered feet first, then killed with scissors while the head is still in the birth canal.
I believe that parents should be notified about a minor daughter’s condition and desire for an abortion before the fact as long as they are responsible people. In this case “responsible people” would mean a parent providing a home for the minor daughter who has no history of child abuse or drug abuse and who has not been judged mentally incompetent. A judge should determine the parents character if necessary. Parents will be responsible for the care of their daughter if things go wrong in the abortion, so they should know about the situation up front and be a factor in the decision to have an abortion. I will vote accordingly.
There is another factor to consider. Do you want Government to be in the business of enforcing religious beliefs? I do not.
Life begins at conception, the union of sperm and egg. Take that to its logical conclusion. Do you want to jail or fine people for taking the morning after pill that prevents a fertilized egg from implanting, or jail or fine people who use an IUD for contraception which prevents implantation? I do not. If you do want to jail or fine people for preventing implantation of a fertilized egg, what chance do you think your idea has of being accepted by the general public, the voters, in 2016? The chance is zero. If you can’t get the voters to agree with you what are you willing to do to impose your idea on the general public?
Do you want to fine or jail people for a first trimester abortion? I do not. This is a terrible issue, a divisive issue that is dimigogued by both sides for political advantage.
As for late term abortions, if an abortion is necessary to save the life of the mother at any point, then in my opinion it is justified.
I hate thinking about the gruesome details of this issue.