The hard right is gathering strong behind Mississippi’s personhood amendment and their goal of criminalizing abortion and outlawing contraception. But there may be a few cracks in the shell.
Yesterday, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour (R) expressed significant concern over the bill’s very broad, and very vague, language, telling MSNBC’s Chuck Todd that he may not vote for the bill due to its “ramifications” on women’s access to health care and maybe even their rights.
The Personhood USA campaign, the collective force behind the effort to get a fertilized egg recognized as a person, was quick to attack Barbour, pointing out that Barbour took campaign contributions from pharmaceutical companies Monsanto and Pfizer, companies that both manufacture the abortion bill.
These are hardly damning accusations since there is likely not a single elected official who has not received some campaign cash from the pharmaceutical industry. And it reveals the larger, more terrifying problem for conservatives (let alone women) in this debate: deviation from the agenda is simply not allowed.
Barbour noted his concerns surrounded the fact that there are at least four ways an egg can be define as fertilized and the Mississippi bill deals with only one. The others, which can result in life-threatening medical conditions for women and ban in vitro fertilization procedures for couples trying to conceive. He did so while reiterating that he firmly believes life begins at conception and would normally support a “personhood” bill and he was still attacked by Personhood USA.
When Barbour is attacked by the anti-choice community it is clear there is no possibility for a sane, rational debate, grounded in science, about this bill. And that right there should tell you what the real agenda behind the egg-as-person movement is all about.
Photo from yoshiffles via flickr.