Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
May 17, 2007
POLITICS: Eliot Spitzer's Pro-Abortion Zealotry
Most of you should be familiar by now with the Seven Stages of Liberal Legal Activism:
1. It's a free country, X should not be illegal.
We have known since very early on in Eliot Spitzer's tenure in public office that he was a pro-abortion zealot who would stop at nothing to serve the financial interests of the abortion industry. The only question now is whether New York's Governor is at Stage Six or Stage Seven.
A New York NARAL Political Action Committee brochure reads: "NARAL/NY was central to the narrow yet critical triumph by Eliot Spitzer in the race for Attorney General" in 1998. The brochure also quotes Mr. Spitzer, a Democrat, as saying that "NARAL/NY was instrumental in my victory."
Eliot Spitzer, the state attorney general . . . is conducting a civil investigation to determine whether they are practicing medicine without a license, and also whether they are intentionally misleading women into thinking they can obtain abortions at the centers. The attorney general's office subpoenaed the records of nine CPC operations, but withdrew them under protest and legal challenge by CPC lawyers, who are representing the money-strapped centers for free.
Anne Downey, who represents the Crisis Pregnancy Center of Western New York, says, "There certainly seems to be a political motivation" behind the attorney general's investigation: "We have never been given any specifics about this alleged violation at our center. We don't know if there's even a factual basis for this significant intrusion into our activities." Downey also complains that the investigators "keep coming back and narrowing what we are allowed to say"; for example, the attorney general wants CPCs to put up signs on their doors explicitly saying the centers are not abortion clinics.
What do CPCs do that so offends abortion-rights proponents? "The charade is that they provide alternatives, when they don't provide alternatives, they frighten women with horror films about abortion, they lie about the psychological impact of abortion; they have even been known to lie about whether a woman is pregnant," Planned Parenthood president Gloria Feldt told the Washington Post. Even worse, from the abortion-rights point of view, CPCs are getting savvier about employing ultrasound technology to "trick" pregnant women into having their babies instead of aborting them. An increasing number of CPCs offer sonograms for pregnant women who visit them-and they report that women, once they see their babies moving in their wombs, overwhelmingly choose to carry the pregnancy to term. Fumed one Long Island abortion provider in the New York Times: "The bottom line is no woman is going to want an abortion after she sees a sonogram."
As the NY Sun noted, the investigation was characteristically intrusive and costly:
The subpoenas, which demanded the names of staff members and their credentials, training materials, promotional information, and data on all policies relating to client referrals, created an onerous burden on these centers, which are nonprofit and funded by private donations.
More here. Yet, Spitzer refused to take action against an abortion clinic that did engage in deceptive practices, including "advertising in a section of The Yellow Pages that is solely reserved for organizations that do not provide abortions or references for abortions."
Unsurprisingly, Spitzer got an ethusiastic endorsement in 2006 from NARAL.
Now, in reaction to the Supreme Court upholding the bipartisan ban on partial-birth abortion - a ban so limited and moderate that it was supported by the last two leaders of Spitzer's own party in the Senate as well as numerous reliable Congressional liberals like Patrick Leahy, Joe Biden, John Dingell, Patrick Kennedy, Jack Murtha and David Obey - and the collapse of any further challenges to that ban in New York, Spitzer is rolling out the "Reproductive Health and Privacy Protection Act," which according to Spitzer will do the following:
*Affirmatively state that a woman has a fundamental right to control her own reproductive health *Establish protections for the rights ensured by Roe: that a pregnant woman has the right to an abortion at any time when her life or health are in danger *Ensure the continuation of public funding for reproductive health services *Decriminalize abortion in New York *Solidify in New York law the existing federal right to contraception and remove the statute that makes it a crime to provide non-prescription contraception to minors.
More here and here; Spitzer's wife stressed that "[a]t a time when the future of Roe is uncertain, states must ensure that their protections of reproductive rights are as robust as they can possibly be."
As if this were not enough, however, the New York State Catholic Conference notes that the bill quietly goes much further:
The Governor’s bill would:
(I'm quoting from a NYSCC email, portions of which are also reprinted here).
It's time for the New York State Senate to stand up against Spitzer's extremism. And it's also time for New York's two leading presidential candidates to weigh in. Hillary Clinton happily took Spitzer's endorsement; is she willing to publicly embrace Spitzer's extremism on this issue? And Rudy Giuliani has struggled to convince pro-lifers that his longstanding support for legal abortion, donations to Planned Parenthood and acceptance of honors from NARAL doesn't amount to the kind of pro-abortion stance that Democrats like Spitzer have taken; now is his chance to put some substance to that effort.
Spitzer is outside the mainstream, even in New York. He must be stopped.
Posted by Baseball Crank at 6:06 PM | Politics 2007 | Politics 2008 | Comments (10) | TrackBack (0)