National Catholic Register


Platform Games

BY The Editors

August 24-30, 2008 Issue | Posted 8/19/08 at 3:00 PM


The Democratic Party is busy digging itself into a hole that will be difficult to climb out of. The party’s official platform has always called for American taxpayers to fund abortion along the lines laid out in Roe v. Wade. In other words, the party wants money withheld from your paycheck transferred to businesses that perform abortion on-demand throughout all nine months of pregnancy.

The new platform still calls for that: “The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to choose a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay, and we oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right,” it says.

But now it adds another thought: “The Democratic Party also strongly supports a woman’s decision to have a child by ensuring access to and availability of programs for pre- and post-natal health care, parenting skills, income support, and caring adoption programs.”

The natural question arises: Why do you strongly support a woman’s decision to have a child? If the answer is, “Because that’s a legitimate right of hers, and a woman does a noble thing when she keeps her child,” then a follow-up question is in order.

If you believe that a pregnant woman is carrying a child, what makes it okay for some women to kill theirs?

In fact, the new language, by admitting that women are carrying children, actually makes the party look worse.

Our culture is tied up in logical knots about abortion, and so it’s always helpful to check language like this by recasting it to be about child abuse instead of abortion.

Imagine a party’s platform said “Our party strongly and unequivocally supports a man’s right to abuse his children.”

That would be shocking (though not as shocking as the right to kill), but a partisan might come up with a way to excuse it. “Maybe they’re making the point that they believe strongly in parental rights. They can’t really be for child abuse, knowingly.”

But words would fail you if it went on to say, “Our party also strongly supports a man’s decision not to abuse his child, by ensuring access to and availability of predator rehabilitation programs.”

If the party is so certain that child protection is an important value, you would want them to make a principled stand for it, unequivocally. In the case of an epidemic of child abuse, you would want them to make child abuse illegal while helping those at risk.

Thanks to the abortion industry and the politicians who benefit from it, abortion has reached outrageous proportions. Nearly 42 million children are aborted a year worldwide. Abortion, the most common surgery in America. This problem can’t be wished away. But it’s also an evil that can’t be endured.

In an Aug. 17 discussion Sen. Barack Obama and Sen. John McCain each told evangelical Protestant author Rick Warren when they thought babies have human rights.

“At the moment of conception,” said John McCain. “I have a 25-year pro-life record in the Congress and in the Senate. And as president of the United States, I will be a pro-life president and this presidency will have pro-life policies. That’s my commitment. That’s my commitment to you.”

He’s right about when life begins and about his record, though he has supported federal funding for embryonic stem-cell research.

Barack Obama’s answer was quite different. “Well, I think that whether you are looking at it from a theological perspective or a scientific perspective, answering that question with specificity, you know, is above my pay grade.”

Actually, from a scientific view it isn’t difficult to answer the question: Embryologists all agree that there is a new organism at conception, and that organism is human. Any theology that didn’t recognize this science would be unworthy of the name theology.

However, Obama’s actions have made his position abundantly clear. He has said his first action as president would be to pass the Freedom of Choice Act, making America more friendly to the abortion industry than any other nation.

Not only is Obama a big supporter of partial-birth abortion laws, but the National Right to Life Committee has also shown that Obama has covered up his record regarding killing infants who are accidentally born during abortion.

In 2003, a nurse blew the whistle on the practice of after-birth infanticide in abortion clinics. Her horrific tales of doctors leaving children to die led to Illinois’ Born-Alive Infants Protection bill.

Says National Right to Life’s Douglas Johnson: “Newly obtained documents prove that in 2003, Barack Obama, as chairman of an Illinois state Senate committee, voted down a bill to protect live-born survivors of abortion — even after the panel had amended the bill to contain verbatim language … explicitly foreclosing any impact on abortion.”

When Obama was running for the U.S. Senate in 2004, his Republican opponent criticized him for supporting infanticide.  Obama said he had only opposed the Born Alive Infants Protection Act because it lacked language explicitly foreclosing any impact on abortion.

During Obama’s run for president, his campaign and his defenders have continued the cover-up. The documents that disprove it are available at


Is it shocking that a man who refuses to protect infants born alive is seriously contending for the presidency? It shouldn’t be. Not in a world where we say we support people’s decision to kill or keep their own kids — whichever they decide.

The only acceptable plank for an American political party should be one that reiterates what the Declaration of Independence says. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Barack Obama started out deciding that unborn children didn’t have the right to life, and it wasn’t long before he added “accidental” newborns to his list. Next came the unwanted wife, Terri Schiavo. The Senate tried to save her when a court allowed her husband to starve her to death in the hospital. Obama called the Senate’s attempt a mistake.

Once you say that some people don’t have a right to life, where do you stop?