Dems at a Crossroads Over Abortion

Democrats at a Crossroads Over Abortion, Activists Won’t Compromise

by Steven Ertelt Editor
December 29, 2004

Washington, DC ( – The Democratic Party is finding itself at a key crossroads on abortion.
Presidential candidate John Kerry lost in part due to his extreme abortion position, some Democrats are calling for the party to moderate its position, a pro-life Democrat is considering a bid for party chairman, and leading abortion advocacy groups refuse to back down.

A post-election poll of voters shows that a majority of Americans are pro-life and the abortion issue gave pro-life candidates such as President Bush a twelve percent advantage.

Sensing a disconnect between the party’s extreme views on abortion and the pro-life views of voters in states he lost, Kerry surprised party activists last month by telling them that Democrats should moderate their abortion stance.

Tim Roemer, a former Indiana Congressman, also sees the divide…

“[O]n the issue of abortion, I fully recognize that our party is overwhelmingly ‘pro-choice,’” Roemer, who is considering a bid for the chairmanship of the Democratic National Committee, said. “As someone who personally holds a different view, I believe that there must be a place in our party for those who have alternative positions.”

The top Democrats in the House and Senate, minority leaders Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, sense a change is needed and are encouraging Roemer to run.

But, leading abortion advocates blast the idea of a pro-life person leading a party that used the abortion issue to attack President Bush’s pro-life record during the election.

“The Democratic Party and its leadership should champion pro-choice values, and uphold the platform’s stated commitment to women’s rights and health,” Planned Parenthood’s president Gloria Feldt said regarding Roemer.

Nancy Keenan of NARAL agrees that the party should not compromise.

“I don’t think it’s smart to have the Democrats change their position,” Keenan said. “They don’t need to abandon a position on choice America agrees with. I think they need to do a better job defining choice as the mainstream value that it is.”

However, Felt may find that other candidates for the party leadership share Kerry and Roemer’s view that the party needs to open itself up to pro-life advocates.

Simon Rosenberg, the president of the New Democratic Network who is mulling a run for the DNC chairmanship, told the Boston Globe newspaper, “All Democrats are united around the idea that we should make abortion safe, legal, and rare,” but “we also have to be open to people who are pro-life.”

And in an interview NBC’s “Meet the Press” earlier this month, even pro-abortion former presidential candidate Howard Dean paid lip service to pro-life Democrats.

He said the party should “embrace” pro-life Democrats.

“I have long believed that we ought to make a home for pro-life Democrats. . . . We can have a respectful dialogue, and we have to stop demagoguing this issue,” Dean said.

Kristen Day, director of Democrats for Life of America, says she is encouraged and hopeful that the party will come around to support the 40 percent of grassroots Democrats who say they oppose abortion.

“We’re very encouraged. I think people are starting to wake up and say we can’t alienate this whole wing of our party,” she said.

The end result of these developments is anyone’s guess, but leading abortion advocacy groups are not likely to loosen their stranglehold on the party.

Since most delegates to the DNC back abortion it’s doubtful that a pro-life person like Roemer would prevail.

Most of the Democrats at the party convention, which controls the platform, also support abortion. It is not likely that the Democratic Party will modify its pro-abortion platform. In fact, at the 2004 convention, unity language supporting those who oppose abortion was removed.

What is more likely is a change in how the party presents its support for abortion.

Reflecting on his political career, former Congressman and presidential candidate Dick Gephardt told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch what many Democrats are saying.

“We’ve been painted into the view, which I don’t think is correct, that we’re pro-abortion and not just pro choice,” he said. “There’s a fine line, and maybe we haven’t articulated our views on it as well as we should.”

Look for the party to select a pro-abortion leader, keep the pro-abortion platform and run a pro-abortion candidate for president in 2008.

Party leaders will likely will include the tolerance plank or make overtures to pro-life Democrats to give the appearance of being open to those who disagree on abortion.

A change in presentation will only be cosmetic. In essence, the Democratic Party will probably remain pro-abortion.

I don’t believe them:tsktsk: They want to say things that sound pretty but will in the end be completely pro-abort. I think they did say enough to upset plannedparenthood,so I better check their site in case their having fits:D We have a long time to take a strong stand on abortion and make it clear social justice is irrelevant if your not allowed to be born,furthermore, if the demecratic party wants to continue the abortion,embryionic stem cell and gay marriage then the independant party will have a better chance of winning.God Bless

I get calls for Republican fundraisers. I tell them that the appointment of Sen Specter over the judiciary committee is a slap in the face to pro-lifers who helped elect the President. I hope the Republican Party wakes up to understand their support base.

As much as I’d like to see a pro-life Democrat, there’s too much water under the bridge in that party.

Wish we had a real leader in this area.

We have to take a hard stance and make sure the politicians know they will not get our vote if they don’t do what is right. I get sick of the media hype and the plannedparenthood bunch saying how pro-choice america is,have they not figured out yet why they lost?I went to their site and nothing was said yet about this,but they had a long article on the health benefits of sex and a certain mortal sin in which threads keep poopingup,oh, I almost forgot they also went to great links to slam the abstainence program:banghead: You don’t think they have an agenda do you:rolleyes: God Bless

I am registered as a Democrat. Not all believe the mantra. Not all in the Republican party are pro life and we all know that too. It is known, when life begins and when someone ends it. There is not one political party that represents the people and their religion. That is why it is best to seperate the two. When religion attempts to mix with politics, it becomes dirty and less powerful. God doesn’t need politics, people do.

I know the founding fathers were human and not without thier faults, but they were on to something when they suggested that politics and religion should remain seperated. Trust in the Lord.

That’s wonderful, but what does that have to do with the Democratic Party Platform calling for a continued defense (and even expansion via taxpayer monies) of abortion-on-demand both here and abroad?

– Mark L. Chance.

Sorry, but that is not historically accurate. The Framer’s opposed religion in the government because they feared that their new government would force a state/national mandated religion upon all people. This fear was greatly caused by the very nation from which they were escaping.

The practice, expression and devotion to religion was meant to be fully protected by the Framer’s idea of their government. “separation” was not part of their plan.

Anyways, I think it would be great if the Democrat platform became pro-life. Wasn’t that the case a while back? I’m not well-reviewed in that period of history, but I seem to recall the Church and liberals working together for a lot of civil liberties, before the democrats went off into abortion…

Yes, the Catholic church and Democrats used to work very closely together. A great book on the topic is “Can a Catholic be a Democrat?”

Democratic Party is pro abortion since 1976.

Here is an good example why religion and politics do not mix.

The Presidential race is heating up. The republican party has done a bang up job of it for 7 years. So much so that people running for office in the republican party in my area had no words on their signs stating they were republican, nor the little elephant. Why?, because people now do not trust the politicians in control, that would be the republican party. The people want and will reach out for change. You hear it in the churches that the republican party is pro life and the democratic party is pro choice. Rudy Guliani, the Republican, is publicly pro-choice. In a round table on the news, he is currently the only one that can possibly win next November. Here’s the rub… They stated that the Christian/Evangelical/and Chatholic base, know this about him and will probably vote for him anyway, because

  1. They want to win!
  2. Rudy promises to keep the supreme court to the right.

So the question becomes what is more important? The bribe or your god? I ask only for people to think about this. Again go with the winner…Trust the Lord!

The framers of the Constitution objected to “the establishment of religion”. It seems to me that they feared a “state church” so to speak as was the case in England from whence they came. And in this day and time, the two parties are not the same as they were in the 40’s and 50’s. Some want to hang the same labels on them with regard to policies, but they are definitely not the same now. That is why I cringe when someone says they vote one way or the other because the family always has, but when you pin them down to what they believe, it may be in sharp contrast to the party to which they affiliate themselves.

Considering how much money pro abort. democrats receive I think this is wishful thinking on some peoples part. Look at how many issues Pres. Clinton comprimised on except abortion. As they say, “do not forget who brought you to the dance”.

I think it can become a problem to attach ones self at the hip to a political party, ANY political party, when it comes to abortion. I don’t believe that any political party can end abortion or bring you to the promise land. That would be our first care and duty, our responsibility.

This is not a simple difference of opinion. Planned Parenthood receives millions from the federal government and Planned Parenthood conducts abortions as a routine procedure. This is not a level “playing field” by any stretch of the imagination.

There is an INDUSTRY in this country that relies on the procedure of abortion as its driving force, its money-maker. This isn’t just about morality, it’s about money for a lot of people ~ no matter how much they may claim it is about the “right to choose”.

While I wil not dispute that Republicans have their non-conformists when it comes to abortion (there are current Presidential candidates that meet that definition but it is forbidden to discuss them) at least the Republicans have the benefit of the fact that “Pro-Life” is an element of the party platform. The Dems cannot say the same, and, indeed, if I am not mistaken, the opposite ~ “Abortion rights” ~ is a Dem platform item.

So the Dems are the “party of death” whether they like it or not. They can make their choices (and, in fact, they already have) but they cannot escape the results of those choices and one of them is that they have earned the title of the “party of death”.

The Dems can give up the title, of course. They can abandon the ‘convenience’ murder of babies as a “right of privacy”. Unless and until they do that (and I, for one, am not holding my breath) then they have EARNED the title of “party of death” and they have no one but themselves to blame.

Of course it would be a problem to attach oneself to a politifal party. Are you trying to defend the proabortion stance of the Democrats? They are definitely proabortion and that is hard to dispute. So, how can so many Catholics vote for Democrats? I am not sure. I guess they look the other way and believe it is OK. A political party can’t end abortion. However, if all Catholics or all God fearing Christians refursed to vote for proabortion candidates, it would end governement support for this brutal practice. WE could overturn Roe vs. Wade and we could make abortion a rare occurance instead of the mass murder it is today. They say about 4,000 babies are aborted every day in this country. It is very sick and sad.

A rather stark contrast as compared to other instances of genocide, isn’t it?

While no instance of genocide is acceptable, it takes a special kind of perversity to execute the next generation before they’re even born. I submit that were some alien species were viewing this practice from afar they would regard it as INSANE.

Those that worry about the sins of this world that are bringing about various calamities might look at abortion first. At least the priorities would be well-founded, if nothing else.

If 4000 a day is an accurate number, then we are executing 4000 citizens a day in this country, without benefit of any sort of “due process”. If that is acceptable, and apparently it is for a large number of people, then I have no earthly idea why anyone would object to some of the other goings-on in the world. Get the priorities straight! 4000 executions a day by abortion is a much bigger deal than any other “hot spot” in the world!!

Not to hyjack this thread, but you are partially corret and partially in error…the framers of the Contitution did not want a federally established church, like the Church of England Where Chruch membership was required in order to hold public office/positions etc. State churches existed at the time and continued into the 1800’s [the last state church, I believe, was the Church of South Carolina].

A government established church with compulsary membership was the issue, not religion in the public square. The United States Congress published a bible for american school children. In the intoroductory pages this bible staes that every child should read from the bible every day at school…

Our Declaration of Independence and the Constition recognize a “Creator”. Our laws are based upon Judeo - Christian principles…

A fundamental right with which we are endowed by our Creator is the Right to Life…something th democratic party no longer recognizes. Such a sad commentary on the party that once worked side by side with the social justice goals that Christians hold dear…:frowning:

While listening to Catholic radio, I was reminded that the Democratic Party was once the choice of Catholics. Now, I have no political party affiliation and no party loyalty. I will pray for the Democrats and Republicans since getting to the White House or other high office is difficult without financial and more importantly, spiritual support.

God bless,

I never said anything or implied that I defended one political party over another. I did say that one should be very careful how you proceed if you think that a political party, politics, politicians and political races will end abortion or make it rain. Like guns, homocide and abortion, it in the very begining, is a matter of conscience. If you have no respect for human life, you are lost at the get go. I remember from my upbringing, it is your intentions that will determine the outcome. I am truly sorry if this may upset you. I believe you cannot legislate peoples thoughts. The path may be in dilligently offering an alternative to abortion. If you want to highlight one solution it would be: adoption, adoption, adoption. There are problems and there are solutions. The battle will be won by truth and God’s blessing by keeping the faith in him. It sounds good to me.

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