The extremism of some of the Republican party’s candidates this midterm election cycle will come as a surprise to no one, but some numbers that came out recently on candidates’ stances on abortion are truly shocking. Every year, the Republican National Coalition for Life, a PAC founded by the notorious anti-feminist Phyllis Schalfly, sends out forms asking Republican candidates for their position on abortion.
And this year’s responses are dreadful: according to Daniel Tencer of Raw Story, 78 candidates responded that they were “pro-life without discrimination” – meaning that want abortion banned under all circumstances. No exceptions.
The list doesn’t include all states or candidates running for House and Senate, so as Tencer points out, the actual count of candidates who oppose legal abortion in all its forms is probably higher. Rachel Maddow flagged this trend back in August, when she said, “The Republican Party is, without actually talking about it, this year nominating a group of candidates for top-of-the-ticket races that are more extreme on the issue of abortion than any other slate of top-of-the-ticket candidates in any other year.”
Meanwhile, the pro-choice Obama administration is demonstrating its commitment to actually helping women carry babies to term if they so desire. A few days ago, the federal government awarded $27 million to an array of state programs that would help young parents and pregnant teens. The Pregnancy Assistance Fund money is “designed to help pregnant women and teen parents finish high school, get child care, health care and housing.”
The moral opposition to abortion will always be a subject for debate, and one that isn’t easily resolved, but pro-life candidates, like pro-choice politicians, have an obligation to give women the resources to viably raise children, regardless of whether abortion is legal. Pro-life candidates’ hypocrisy is revealed when they don’t back programs like these – but of course, because of their “small-government” views, many of these candidates would prefer to force all women in the country to carry their pregnancies to term, regardless of whether the child was a product of rape, and certainly regardless of whether the mother is ready or able to raise a child.
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