Susan B. Anthony List Hopes To Slide Dialogue On Abortion Further Right

Where most political operatives have seen disaster in Missouri Congressman Todd Akin’s “legitimate rape” comments, the Susan B. Anthony List sees opportunity.

The radical anti-abortion group has $150,000 in ad time to spend in the state, and it’s doing so by pushing an ad blasting then state legislator Barack Obama for opposing the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act as evidence the President is “radical” on abortion. The goal, says SBA List President Marjorie Dannenfelser, is to “balance” the conversation on abortion rights. “In light of the recent national discussion over abortion, itís important Americans know the Presidentís best-kept secret: his extreme record on abortion,” said Dannenfelser in a statement.

The motivation behind the ad is curious. President Obama’s record on abortion is anything but extreme, and really, SBL knows this despite this ad. And in Missouri, voters don’t need “convincing” on President Obama’s record on choice. It’s a deep red state where views on abortion rights are entrenched. Rep. Akin’s campaign against Sen. Claire McCaskill seems to be faltering, but Democrats cannot afford to get comfortable that Akin’s gaffs will amount to an electoral win for McCaskill. The group obviously supports Akin, so in a tight race why not come out with an ad that actually says so–unless there’s a different goal in mind.

The idea that the conversation on abortion rights is skewed to favor abortion access is, frankly, laughable. On the whole this country has widely accepted the principle that abortion access should be curtailed, whether through outright bans on the procedure except for rare exceptions in some instances to the hyper-regulation of clinics, the conversation now starts with the idea that curtailing abortion access is reasonable.

And with that presumption of reasonableness anti-choice activists have been able to chip away at the very heart of abortion rights. For SBL, a group that essentially believes in fetal personhood, this ad is trying to re-set, yet again, the standard by which “reasonableness” will be measured. This ad is not about electing any candidate, it’s about setting a narrative. The real question is whether the rest of the press goes along for the ride.

Related Stories:

GOP Anti-Abortion Plank Nothing New, Just Ask Tommy Thompson

Rape Survivor Eve Ensler Responds To Akin’s Legitimate Rape Comments

GOP Will Adopt Constitutional Abortion Ban In Party Platform

Photo from DonkeyHotey via flickr.


Martha Eberle
Martha Eberle5 years ago

I find it so disgusting that a group like that can take the name of a feminist like Susan B. Anthony, besmirching her good name. But then, if you'll notice, the repubs always name their bills the opposite to what they mean.

Michael G.
Michael T5 years ago

Marianne C. I am not doubting you in the least. But I would like to have access to the stats you posted. The reason I am saying this is when I was in a discussion about this, all I could find was that there wer 167 illegal abortions the year before it was legalized. I found it hard to accept those stats as I found it difficult to accept the number was really that low. So I gave up looking.
If you can, when you can I want to be able to use that source in arguments with those who say things to the contrary to what you posted.

Evelyn M.
Evelyn M5 years ago

Marianne C, great statistics! Would that the Repubs pay attention to them instead of wanting to turn the clock back to those dangerous years.

pam w.
pam w5 years ago

Well said! I owe you stars for that one!

Michael G.
Michael T5 years ago

As I have recently said elsewhere

Again, there seems to be this anger that has welled up, a frenetic energy underlying it all.

They so want to be right, so need to be right, and by that need will pretend they are right.

That takes its toll on them. Because they know they have crossed over a line and are lying, being lied to, and are lying to themselves.

It is a desperate crazy circle and it gets to them.

They watched the convention and heard its speakers. They saw Clint Eastwood change all the buildup leading up to introducing Mitt. They saw Ann Romney look on in confusion as Eastwood embarrassed them. They know that his numbers aren’t any higher than they were before the convention. Paul Ryan lied outright. Romney’s biggest effort was in trying to appear more human like he has a soul. There was nothing of substance about the GOP plan. Nothing. NOTHING.

Are they energized by what they saw these past 3 days? I don’t think so. Are they angrier than ever that it is unlikely they will be able to get a new president? That I think is what is driving this frenzy today on Care2.

Frances C.
Frances C5 years ago

I agree with you David D. The tea party doesn't understand truth, their position has no logic. Their mindset is stuck in another century. Their small government mentality doesn't extend to women's right. That is the problem of religion getting into the government. This is exactly what are Founding Fathers were afraid of, that is why they put the wall of separation between the church and State. We must vote these religious loons out. Vote for Democrats.

Obama Biden 2012

Dennis Deal
Past Member 5 years ago

I stand with women per Roe v Wade. Any one that can understand that Supreme Court Decision. Understands my position on the matter.

The republican/tea party says it wants smaller government. Yet turns around and invites that same government to control a woman medical decision. I have often wondered and still do. Does not any one in the republican/tea party not get the hypocrisy of that position.

Amanda M.
Amanda M5 years ago

Kate L, being pro-choice IS being pro-woman! It's the WOMAN'S right to decide FOR HERSELF when and how many children she WANTS to have, and HER body that has to go through pregnancy. If she WANTS to have children, then the pregnancy will be welcomed. However, if she doesn't want to be pregnant, then she is within her rights to opt for an abortion if that is the right choice for HER.

Let me put it another way: Think of the woman's uterus as being like a house. If she wants to be pregnant, then the zygote/embryo/fetus will be treated as a welcome guest and cared for accordingly. However, if the pregnancy is unwanted, then the zygote/embryo/fetus is an illegal squatter that has no right to be there. Therefore, the woman is within her legal rights to serve an eviction notice. If property owners and landlords are within their legal rights to evict unwanted or illegal tenants, isn't the woman by the same logic allowed the same rights?

The Democratic Party advocates for the rights of the WOMAN to have full control over her reproductive options. The Republican Party, on the other hand, seems to only want her to have one option, and that is forcing her to Carry The Pregnancy No Matter What. Furthermore, their arguments against choice are based on their religious beliefs, not science. Sorry, but just because you're against abortion does NOT mean you have the "right" to force me to live by your opinion. Your rights stop where my rights to control my own body start, a

Patricia H.
Patricia H.5 years ago

let your voice be heard VOTE

Andrew K.
Andrew K.5 years ago

Personal attacks and rhetoric aside, the act simply states that many more babies are born alive from abortion procedures than one may think. An actual person who was born alive and survived the procedure explains that Barack Obama voted 4 times to prevent legal protections for babies born alive. Essentially, since their mother's wanted them dead, they should be left to die. Even Hillary Clinton supported the Federal version of the Born Alive Victims Act
In fact the senate voted 100-0 to support protections for babies born alive.
It doesn't matter if this only applies to 1000 babies or just 1 baby a year. They are now legally protected and Obama opposed that.