Two conservative GOP leaders with presidential aspirations, Mitch Daniels and Haley Barbour, both recently stated that they think the GOP should ignore social issues in lieu of fiscal issues.
Some think such chatter is a concerted effort emanating from establishment Republicans anxious to win over/hold on to independents heading into the 2010 and 2012 elections.
Indeed, the Los Angeles Times reported yesterday that the much-touted GOP book released that same day, “Young Guns: A New Generation of Conservative Leaders,” is “a manifesto of fiscal conservatism” that “avoids the hot-button social issues, including abortion and gay rights, which have been featured in previous GOP campaigns.”
In addition, the Republican National Coalition for Life reports that the Republican’s upcoming 2010 version of the “Contract with America” currently excludes any mention of Life issues whatsoever. RNC4L writes that pro-life stalwart Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, is battling for the GOP to include at a minimum a pledge to defund Planned Parenthood, the United States’ largest abortion provider.
I get really, really tired of the constant, senseless battle with Republicans to uphold the sanctity of human life.
I understand fiscal concerns are foremost on American minds, but that doesn’t mean the preborn baby should be thrown out with the political bath water.
Social issues comprise the foundation of fiscal issues. Voters should be educated about this.
Furthermore, there are aspects of the fight against abortion that are popular with independents and even Democrats, such as the public not wanting to pay for it.
God bless tea-party leader Dick Armey for getting this. Here’s what Armey said at a Christian Science Monitor event Monday:
The Monitor reported:
Mr. Armey said, “A truce? No. These are issues of the heart. People are not going to turn their hearts and minds away from things that they have so heartfelt.”
Armey, who served as House majority leader, added, “the fact of the matter is there is sort of a question of 1st things first priorities. If we lose this nation, if it falls into insolvency, then all of these issues pretty well fall by the wayside too, don’t they. So I think there is a setting of priorities.”
He specifically referred to the abortion issue. “Since President Obama has been elected, there has been extraordinarily high levels of funding for international abortions through what is called the Mexico City language. That fight hasn’t been had for a few years. Now that fight will be had with this majority,” he said, referring to his stated expectation that Republicans will win control of the House, and perhaps the Senate. He added, “these issues are too important to be left behind and they won’t be left behind.”
Armey was making the point that while our nation’s fiscal emergency is an obvious priority right now, the abortion issue shouldn’t be cast aside, and the Mexico City policy is one example where the two intersect.
Armey understands the public by and large opposes paying for abortion either here at home, such as part of Obama’s health-care plan, or internationally, such as part of the Mexico City policy.
These are winning issues for Republicans.
It is disturbing that the House Republican leadership is treating the pro-life issue like its red-headed stepchild. We must make noise not to let them.