WWW Opinion Times

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

2008 Alert: Hillary to the Red States--Part I

I wonder if Hillary is running for President. Let's take a peek:
NY Times: Mrs. Clinton, in a speech to about 1,000 abortion rights supporters at the state Capitol, firmly restated her support for the Supreme Court ruling that legalized abortion nationwide, Roe v. Wade. But then she quickly shifted gears, offering warm words to opponents of abortion - particularly members of religious groups - asserting that there was "common ground" to be found after three decades of emotional and political warfare over abortion.

In addition to her description of abortion as a "tragic choice" for many," Mrs. Clinton said that faith and organized religion were the "primary" reasons that teenagers abstain from sexual relations, and reminded the audience that during the 1990's, she promoted "teen celibacy" as a way to reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies.

"The fact is, the best way to reduce the number of abortions is to reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies in the first place," Mrs. Clinton said.
Shrewd move. It won't fly with conservative activists, but if she is able to come across sincerely, it could neutralize those millions of extra votes which showed up for President Bush while allowing her to keep her base in the Democrat left. She and Bill know how to seem conservative "enough."

This emphasizes the fact that conservatives cannot sit down after the great gains in 2004. Without continued, large-scale information campaigns, Democrat prevarication could cause the Bush base to crumble.

She'll get the nomination I predict (unless she gets into legal trouble). And unless a strong, conservative Republican candidate emerges (no, I don't mean Giuliani or McCain), she could eek out the Presidency. We'd better be on the top of our game.

Thank God for the blogsphere!

UPDATE: Not only is Hillary trying to triangulate conservative politicians, voters and herself on the issue of abortion as described above, The Guardian reports that she is blaming George Bush's family planning policy for increases in abortion
She said there could be a link between a decline in so-called "comprehensive" sexual education and an increased number of terminations.

Speaking to a conference of family abortion rights supporters in New York, Mrs Clinton said that during her husband's administration, family planning funding was a priority and "we saw the rate of abortion consistently fall."

"The abortion rate fell by one quarter between 1990 and 1995, the steepest decline since Roe was decided in 1973," Mrs Clinton said, referring to the Roe v Wade decision which legalised abortion.

"The rate fell another 11 percent between 1994 and 2000."
And then the Bush administration, sadly, responded weakly after a good rally speech this past weekend. The administration responded thus:
White House spokesman Ken Lasaius said the president believed in co-operation on the abortion front.

"He's made it very clear that whether we agree or disagree on the issue of abortion, that we can all work together to take practical steps to reduce the number of abortions that occur," Mr Lasaius said.
What kind of a response is this? Cooperation will accomplish nothing in this battle for life. The President should be de-legitimizing Hillary's pro-death policies. Instead, he is responding in kind to her statements. This is the same trap that former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich fell into when countering the statemens of then President Bill Clinton--by his own admission. If the President takes this approach, he will fare no better than Newt in the battle of ideas.