McCain and abortion

Yes, he’s committed to overturning Roe v. Wade. The capacity of some liberals for self-deception about the intentions of our opponents is truly breathtaking.

From the latest McCain fund-raising letter:

4. Senators Obama and Clinton support abortion and oppose overturning Roe v. Wade. Senator McCain has a twenty-five year pro-life record and supports overturning Roe v. Wade. Which presidential candidate’s positions do you support?

5. John McCain will nominate judges who enforce — not make — the law, judges of the quality and character of Justices John Roberts and Samuel Alito. Senators Obama and Clinton voted against Justices Roberts and Alito and favor liberal activist judges. Which presidential candidate’s positions do you support?

And on McCain’s website, the entry on “Human Dignity and the Sanctity of Life” starts out with a section on “Overturning Roe v. Wade”:

John McCain believes Roe v. Wade is a flawed decision that must be overturned, and as president he will nominate judges who understand that courts should not be in the business of legislating from the bench.

Constitutional balance would be restored by the reversal of Roe v. Wade, returning the abortion question to the individual states. The difficult issue of abortion should not be decided by judicial fiat.

However, the reversal of Roe v. Wade represents only one step in the long path toward ending abortion.

But don’t worry. Michael Lind says we can relax because “liberalism” has won, no matter how many actual elections conservatives win, and the Supreme Court defers to precedent (except when it doesn’t), or figures out a way to “uphold” a previous ruling while eviscerating it.

And Froma Harrop of the Providence Journal has exerted her psychic powers to determine that McCain doesn’t mean what he says, or what he’s been saying and voting on for a quarter of a century, but what he said in the brief moment in 2000 when he was pretending to be a moderate. (As Arianna Huffington says, there are lots of people who would like to vote for the John McCain of 2000, but to do so you would need a time machine.)

What’s scary is that both Lind and Harrop are Democrats. Lind lives in the mythical center, with all the yellow lines and dead armadillos, while Harrop is a die-hard Clintonite who’s still peddling the old fairytales about how Obama isn’t strong on the right to choose. But whatever their motivations, they’re helping out the right wing by trying to persuade progressives that a McCain Administration really wouldn’t be that bad. The last time I heard about how a Republican Presidential candidate wasn’t as much of a conservative lunatic as the rest of the Republicans, his name was George W. Bush. Fool me once ….

h/t Rick Perlstein

Update George Will gets this one right:

Three quarters of the country at this point does not know that John McCain is pro-life. They think because he‘s a maverick, and maverick means disagreeing with your party, he probably disagrees with the party on that. They‘re wrong.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: