Romney Just Doesn’t Care About Abortion Policy

As if further evidence were needed, pro-lifers just received another reality check that Mitt Romney doesn’t give a discarded gray hair for their cause.  He told The Des Moines Register today that “there’s no legislation with regards to abortion that I’m familiar with that would become part of my agenda.”

Damage control was immediate, no surprise, and I doubt pro-lifers will abandon him for this remark.  His opponent’s a real believer in reproductive rights, so Romney can flip-flop and self-contradict and play the moderate here and still appear preferable to their eyes.

We voters can be so easy to manipulate.

I would expect Romney, if elected, to restrict abortion in more ways than one, but not out of deeply-held conviction.  After all, he was willing to go along with government funding of abortion to make the Massachusetts health care insurance reform law a reality. As Obama spokeswoman Lis Smith said today, “It’s troubling that Mitt Romney is so willing to play politics with such important issues.”

Yes, it is.  And it should trouble pro-life activists that their champion by default cares so little about them and about the unborn that he’ll flat out lie about his agenda regarding abortion.

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Kyle Cupp

Kyle Cupp is a freelance writer who blogs about culture, philosophy, politics, postmodernism, and religion. He is a contributor to the group Catholic blog Vox Nova. Kyle lives with his wife, son, and daughter in North Texas. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

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28 Responses

  1. Matthew Shadle says:

    You need to read the quote more carefully. He says he does not know of a piece of “legislation” on abortion that would become part of his plan. We do have a constitutional government with the separation of powers, after all. Legislation is what the legislature does. Can you name an important piece of current pro-life legislation that Romney should be endorsing but is not? This in no way contradicts his earlier statements about prohibiting foreign aid that includes abortions or about appointing Supreme Court justices who would overturn Roe v. Wade because those are executive decisions of the president, not legislation.

    • Kyle Cupp says:

      You dance well, Mr. Shadle, but I’m not impressed. Oh, I caught the possibly super-subtle use of the words “legislation” and “agenda” by this would be chief executive, but it doesn’t matter. First, as president, he would sign bills, after all, and he could, if he cared about abortion policy, promote them. Second, Romney’s spokesperson issued the following walk back, “Governor Romney would of course support legislation aimed at providing greater protections for life,” indicating, albeit vaguely, that restrictions on abortion would become part of his agenda.

      • Michelle says:

        Republicans introduce plenty of anti-abortion legislation each year. His own running mate has co-sponsored some of the more draconian legislation aimed at outlawing not only abortion but also some forms of birth control. So “severe conservative” Romney could certainly come out in support of it. Massachusetts Moderate Mitt, however, knows it will cost him votes to do so, hence the waffle-y, disingenuous statement to the Des Moines Register, which a campaign spokespod predictably walked back. Once again, the Mittster is trying to have it both ways.

  2. BlaiseP says:

    As a Mormon bishop, Romney counselled women not to obtain abortions, instead recommending they give their unwanted children up for abortion. We tend to forget, amongst all this foofaraw over Romney the politician, that he’s also a authority figure within the LDS faith.

    • Kim says:

      Yes, and he acts an awful lot like French bishops during the French Revolution, doncha think? 😉

      • BlaiseP says:

        Mitt Romney’s LDS background is the most important aspect to his personality. They’re an insular community; it’s hard to get a grip on the dynamics of their communities.

        This much seems safe to say: there are two schools of thought about how a proper society is organised. The first says we ought to be able to rely on our neighbours. That’s the Amish way, too. The second says we ought to able to rely on the community, that is to say, our government.

        The Mormons are separatists and always were. But they treat the American Constitution as a quasi-sacred document. Their views on the USA also take on religious overtones: they believe this nation was set apart by God as a place for the rebirth of the true faith. In other words, the way some people, especially the Evangelicals and Zionists look at Israel, the LDS folks look at America through similar lenses. Now that’s simplistic enough to be wrong in some particular respects, but that’s what I’ve learned from my limited contacts with Mormons.

        LDS and its hierarchy has much in common with other religions of orthodoxy: they’ll repair to their own community authority structures in preference to any governmental entities. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, it’s just a difference in philosophy.

        • Kim says:

          yeah… it’s kinda fun to troll a mormon, or so i’m told.
          so many buttons…
          Obama’s having… fun.

    • Jeff No-Last-Name says:

      You might want to edit:
      “they give their unwanted children up for abortion” to
      “they give their unwanted children up for adoption”

  3. bookdragon says:

    Of course he cares about abortion…it’s a very important lever that if pulled just right can help him win an election.

  4. Rodak says:

    @BlaiseP —

    What he did as a Mormon bishop has precious little to do with how he’s playing politics with the abortion issue which he was apparently for before he was against before he was indifferent. Romney may be the first man to figure out how to simultaneously have his thumb up his ass and his finger in the wind.

    • BlaiseP says:

      Romney’s as fake as a three dollar bill. We all know that. But deep in his little dark heart, he’s willing to say anything to get his ass into the chair behind the desk in the Oval Office. Then we’ll find out who this bastard really is. Oh yes we will.

      • Michelle says:

        That’s the scary part. Presumably Romney has some core convictions other than sheer ambition and crossing “win the presidency” off his bucket list, but who knows what they are. I don’t really want to find out.

        • Kim says:

          Man’s a coward. He wants to surpass his father. I don’t think he has any core convictions — the type of man who would rob America’s coffers and his own church — if he HAS core convictions, I believe you’re right, I don’t want to know them.

        • BlaiseP says:

          Mostly it’s about appointing American Taliban to SCOTUS. That’s my guess. See, most of what a president actually does is react. Sure, he can propose and veto legislation, and there’s the Bully Pulpit — and Congress has ceded a good many powers to POTUS since 9/11. But the legacy of any POTUS is his SCOTUS appointments.

        • Pub Editor says:

          “Presumably Romney has some core convictions other than sheer ambition and crossing “win the presidency” off his bucket list”

          Assumes facts not in evidence.

          • Rodak says:

            @ Pub Editor —

            I think that there is pretty good evidence to support the contention that Romney’s core convictions include the idea that the majority of Americans are either parasites, or pawns to be used and discarded as needed at the whim of those deserving members of the entrepreneurial class (and their bankers), who constitute the only group, (though few in number) that matters. This Randian philosophy certainly does transcend both Romney’s personal ambitions and his desire to be elected as POTUS.

  5. Rodak says:

    @BlaiseP —

    Don’t forget that under our wonderful political system the POTUS spends his whole first term running for a second term. So we won’t see the REAL Mitt unless and until he gets re-elected in 2016.

    • BlaiseP says:

      That’s not such a terrible thing in a republic, keeping the voters’ opinions in view. But these days, it’s mostly about calling donors and inviting them to stay in the Lincoln Bedroom and other such fellatory folderol so’s he can keep his campaign coffers full.

      As for second terms, it’s been a long time since any POTUS has enjoyed the ride. Bush’s second term was a bust, likewise Clinton’s second term. Reagan’s second term was a nightmare. Barbara Bush tells the tale of Bush41 leaving after one term, somewhat depressed. Barbara (probably the only sane member of that clan, well, there is Jeb, but he’s his mother’s son and should have run for Prez) told Bush41 he’d done a good job. It was Bush41 himself who observed this pattern of evil second terms.

      Many years later, Bush41 and Bill Clinton were doing tsunami fundraising. Clinton was always deferential to the old guy. They were crossing the Indian Ocean on a bizjet with only one bed. Clinton asked Bush41 to sleep in the bed, said he’d stay up for a while. Bush41 awoke to find Clinton curled up in the aisle of the jet. Bush43 got wind of it and thought the world of Bill Clinton thereafter.

      These president guys are still human beings. We tend to forget that sometimes. The job is too much for one man. Eight years of it, bearing that much responsibility, ages them horribly. I’d never want such a job.

      • Rodak says:

        @Blaise P —

        I always thought that “the job ages them horribly” too. And then I got to be the age at which presidents get elected to that office, and I saw how much I aged during an eight-year period at that age. It’s not the job; it’s just nature.

        As for second terms: whether they enjoy them once they’ve got them or not, they still need to spend their first term pandering to those powers-that-be who will make successfully running for the second term possible. As you say, it isn’t listening to the voice of the people, it’s listening to the voice of the Koch brothers, et al. They also, of course, have to do nothing that will alienate any part of the constituency who put them there in the first place. So the first term is largely a great footsy-playing event. In the second term, they try to do that which they really wanted to do in the first place and then things can get rough. Breaks your heart to see it, doesn’t it?

      • Kim says:

        You’re calling the Don of the Bush Crime Family sane??
        [bush crime family’s their term, not mine]
        Man, she screwed up george W but royally…
        Her husband was a good guy.

    • Liberty60 says:

      I don’t think there is a real Mitt; I think he is perfectly comfortable with whatever agenda or results happen to coincide with his being POTUS.

  6. Jaybird says:

    Yes, it is. And it should trouble pro-life activists that their champion by default cares so little about them and about the unborn that he’ll flat out lie about his agenda regarding abortion.



  7. Thanks for keeping us up to date on subjects of such importance. It continues to be hard for me to imagine that forces against life from conception to natural death have done such a good PR job that Americans just go along with the ideas represented in R vs. W and its immoral & horrific impact on society. Every society that has regulated life in such ways are in decline or experiencing the negative impacts of their unjust / immoral decisions (China & Russia – to name two).

  8. Rodak says:

    @ Eric Neubauer —

    Could you give us the short list of those countries now prospering because they have NOT regulated life in such ways? Maybe just the top four or five?