Guess Which Abortion Provider Is Still Being Funded During the Shutdown

The government shutdown has reached the one-week mark and there has been much discussion of what services are not available and which government workers are not getting paid, but one organization has been overlooked. Despite years of Republican efforts aimed at defunding the abortion provider, even shutting down nonessential government services doesn’t appear to have cut off the group from its government money.

The reason that Planned Parenthood continues to get federal checks when air traffic controllers, park rangers, and members of the Coast Guard do not is that most of Planned Parenthood’s federal money comes through the Medicaid program. As with most of the federal entitlement programs, Medicaid money continues to flow during the shutdown. Kaiser Health News reports that Medicare and Medicaid are already funded through the second quarter. That would take the health programs through the end of March.

There are some aspects of Planned Parenthood’s federal funding that could be interrupted by the shutdown. In addition to Medicaid, the group is a major recipient of Title X family planning grants. According to the group’s website, Planned Parenthood serves 1.5 million of the approximately 4 million Title X patients. The Title X grants make up about 19 percent of revenue for participating clinics. These grants could quickly expire in a protracted shutdown.

Defunding Planned Parenthood wasn’t the goal of the current government shutdown, but it would have been a nice added benefit, especially since Democrats don’t seem any more inclined to deal on the wall than they were a week ago. However, even if all federal money dried up, it wouldn’t totally bankrupt the group. Planned Parenthood gets about a third of its funding from the government and the rest from private donations.

For years now, Republicans have embraced a number of quixotic goals such as defunding Planned Parenthood, repealing Obamacare, and building a border wall. They have also embraced government shutdowns as a tactic in achieving several of these goals. Obamacare survived a shutdown in 2013 that also left Planned Parenthood funding intact. This year it appears that the wall will not be funded but that Planned Parenthood will.

Perhaps it is time for Republicans to find a new strategy.

Brett Kavanaugh Just Helped Planned Parenthood Keep Its Funding

In a surprising move, newly minted Justice Brett Kavanaugh and Chief Justice John Roberts joined with the Court’s liberal justices to prevent the high court from deciding whether states could defund Planned Parenthood. The move will let stand lower court rulings that struck down two state laws in Louisiana and Kansas that would have barred the abortion provider from receiving Medicare funds.

Louisiana and Kansas had sought certiorari to allow the Supreme Court to hear their appeals in Gee v. Planned Parenthood of Gulf Coast and Andersen v. Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri. Four judges must agree to accept a case and the votes of Kavanaugh and Roberts to deny certiorari killed any chance that the Court would hear the Planned Parenthood cases, let alone allow states to defund the group.

Several other states have attempted to ban funding for Planned Parenthood at the state level after Republicans in Washington were unable to move a funding ban through Congress. For now, it appears that any further attempts to cut off the group’s federal money will be defeated.

Chief Justice John Roberts typically votes in the conservative bloc but has been key to some high-profile disappointments for constitutionalists. Roberts was the key vote in saving Obamacare with his opinion that the individual mandate was really a tax and therefore constitutional.

Kavanaugh’s vote may surprise some, but several observers predicted that if President Trump wanted to overturn Roe v. Wade, Kavanaugh was the wrong judge to pick. Similar to Roberts, Kavanaugh ruled on an Obamacare case in which he did not dispute the constitutionality of the health insurance law. Prior to Kavanaugh’s confirmation, Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) argued that Kavanaugh was a judge who would uphold precedent. That statement was interpreted as an indication that Kavanaugh would not strike down Roe and possibly Obamacare as well.

Justice Clarence Thomas, who was appointed to the Court by the recently departed George H.W. Bush, dissented, writing that the other judges were afraid to tackle the hot-button issue. “Some tenuous connection to a politically fraught issue does not justify abdicating our judicial duty,” Thomas said. “If anything, neutrally applying the law is all the more important when political issues are in the background.”

The decision not to grant certiorari is a hard hit for pro-life groups. “If Kavanaugh was going to deal a major blow to health care rights during his first session on the court, this would have been the case to do it,” Tim Jost, an emeritus professor at Washington and Lee University School of Law, said in Politico.

During the 2016 election, Donald Trump’s pro-life platform and promise to appoint judges who would overturn Roe was a major reason that many Republicans held their noses and voted for him over Hillary. Given Mr. Trump’s long pro-choice history and the ready availability of more firmly pro-life, constitutionalist judges such as Amy Coney Barrett, many of those voters must wonder today if Justice Kavanaugh has gone rogue or if he is doing exactly what President Trump and other pro-choice Republicans wanted him to.

So Much For Defunding Planned Parenthood

When the Republican House majority exits stage right in January, any chance of defunding Planned Parenthood will be leaving also. While it’s understandable that conservatives would be angry about the failure to end federal funding of the abortion provider, there was never really any chance that the GOP would be able to follow through on its campaign promise anyway.

With 51 Republicans in the Senate, it was theoretically possible that a ban on funding Planned Parenthood could be slipped into a budget resolution in order to avoid a Democrat filibuster. However, that strategy ignores the fact that there are Republican supporters of Planned Parenthood in the Senate. Their names are Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska).

The Republican pickup of two Senate seats in this year’s elections won’t help the matter either. When it comes to the Republican domestic agenda, the gain of two Senate seats is more than offset by the Democrat wave that boosted Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to control of the House. Any attempt at defunding Planned Parenthood will be aborted by House Democrats.

“We told the White House, ‘Don’t sign any budget that funds Planned Parenthood,’” Kristan Hawkins, president of the Students for Life of America said. “‘We need you to uphold your campaign promises and force Congress to uphold theirs.’”

But, in reality, President Trump had little choice. Without the votes to pass a budget that cut Planned Parenthood’s funding, the choice was to either fund the government or shut it down. If the White House had forced a government shutdown over Planned Parenthood funding, they would have eventually had to surrender.

Republicans failed to make a case that convinced the American people that Planned Parenthood should not be funded. Although defunding the group is popular with the Republican base, 62 percent of Americans view Planned Parenthood favorably despite the fact that the electorate is evenly split on abortion.

Politico notes that many Republicans privately concede that frontal assaults on the Planned Parenthood are doomed to fail. Instead, many are looking for alternative strategies that incrementally strip away the group’s federal funding. Proposed changes to Title X by the Trump Administration would make it more difficult for abortion providers to qualify for federal funds. In West Virginia, voters recently approved a constitutional amendment that cuts Medicaid funding for abortion providers. Both moves will likely face legal challenges.

Defunding Planned Parenthood is a good idea but it was always unrealistic without a large Republican majority. The fact that President Trump’s chaotic presidency is quickly eroding Republican majorities at both the federal and state level makes it even more unlikely that Republicans will be able to terminate government funding for nation’s largest abortion provider.

 

 

 

 

Are Conservatives Tired Of Winning Yet?

 

 

As a candidate, Donald Trump promised Republicans that “We are going to win so much that you may even get tired of winning.” Over the past year, I’ve noticed that the president’s supporters and conservative critics don’t seem to share the same definition of “winning.”

A few times recently the different views of winning have come to the surface. When Donald Trump tweeted, “Why would Kim Jong-un insult me by calling me ‘old,’ when I would NEVER call him ‘short and fat?’ Oh well, I try so hard to be his friend – and maybe someday that will happen,” Trump supporters erupted in cheers and celebrations on social media. Several lists of Trump’s accomplishments making their way around the internet, such as this one on Conservapedia, point out the areas where Trump supporters believe he is winning.

From my analysis, President Trump’s accomplishments seem to fall into three main categories. First is the appointments of conservative jurists to positions throughout the judiciary. Second, Trump has used his executive authority to enact a number of promised reforms. Finally, Donald Trump uses his “bully pulpit” to fight back. The duration and effect of these accomplishments varies wildly.

In my view, President Trump’s most important and – so far – only lasting accomplishment has been his effect on the federal judiciary. The appointment of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court is only the tip of the iceberg. Working with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who many Trump supporters view as an establishment foe, Trump had appointed 44 federal judges and had eight confirmed by August. These conservative judges will have a lasting effect on the judicial branch.

The same cannot be said of Trump’s executive actions. Many of President Trump’s executive actions overturn President Obama’s executive actions. A successor could erase President Trump’s executive legacy just as easily.

The quality of President Trump’s executive actions varies as well. His executive actions range from the excellent, such as cutting bureaucratic regulations and reinstating the Mexico City policy to ban federal funding for abortions in other countries, to the ineffective, such as his travel bans that would likely have no effect on fighting terrorism.

Some of Trump’s executive actions, though they fulfill campaign promises and are applauded by his supporters, are actually harmful to the country. In one of his first acts as president, Trump withdrew from the Trans Pacific Partnership. The lack of American participation did not kill the trade deal, however. Other parties to the treaty are continuing to move forward on the agreement. If the deal goes forward without the United States, it will be American businesses, workers and consumers who lose.

The third category of Trump accomplishments is the most meaningless and illusory. Trump supporters love his snarky tweets and insults. They like the fact that he fights back and consider this an accomplishment. Essentially, Trump’s tweets and insults make Republicans feel good about themselves.

The problem is that Trump has the opposite effect on the rest of the country. An ABC News poll found that 70 percent of the public thinks that Trump does not act presidential and 68 percent don’t see him as a positive role model. The president’s behavior is now directly linked to electoral losses in which voters say that they are voting for Democrats specifically because they oppose Donald Trump.

Another commonly cited accomplishment is the surging stock market. While stocks have hit record highs under Trump, they did the same under Obama. In fact, a look at the stock market over the past 10 years shows that the market has been climbing since the end of the Great Recession in 2009. Supporters have difficulty pointing to any specific Trump policy change that could explain the surging market since Republicans have scored so few victories on fiscal and economic policy.

On the other hand, my definition of “winning” relies heavily on legislative victories that would be difficult for Democrats to reverse. As the Trump Administration prepares to close out its first year and enter a midterm election year, it has not scored a single legislative victory.

The repeal or reform of Obamacare would have been a major legislative victory since Republicans had been campaigning against the federal health law since 2010. Donald Trump campaigned against Obamacare as well, but when the chips were down, the president’s erratic behavior and attacks on Republican senators almost certainly contributed to the reform effort’s demise.

Likewise, Trump began the tax reform effort with a war against Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), a member of the Senate budget committee. Trump insisted that, in contrast with conservative fiscal doctrine, that the tax reform not lower the rates of the wealthiest taxpayers. The top 20 percent of taxpayers pay 95 percent of taxes per the Office of Management and Budget, but taxpayers in the top bracket won’t get a lower rate, if tax reform actually becomes law, thanks to President Trump.

While Trump supporters may argue that the president has accomplished more than any president except FDR, most Americans understand how little has been done in the past year. Without the passage of a single piece of legislation that is part of the Trump agenda, Republicans seeking reelection have few accomplishments to run on. As a result, many Republicans are deciding that 2018 is a good time to retire.

Donald Trump has not ushered in an era in which conservatives have grown tired of winning. In fact, winning has been in short supply over the past year. What President Trump has lacked in winning, he has more than made up for in whining, but that makes a poor substitute.

Justice for Jane

A pregnant illegal immigrant in Texas successfully obtained an abortion at U.S. taxpayer expense yesterday. According to Vogue, she released a “powerful statement” (that someone else obviously wrote) which said:

My name is not Jane Doe, but I am a Jane Doe. I’m a 17 year old girl that came to this country to make a better life for myself. My journey wasn’t easy, but I came here with hope in my heart to build a life I can be proud of. I dream about studying, becoming a nurse, and one day working with the elderly.

“Jane” was sixteen weeks pregnant at the time of her abortion. The carefully crafted statement was clearly worded to earn her public sympathy. Publications such as The Daily Beast, that support very liberal political policies in regard to abortion rights, obscenely accused “pro-life zealots” of prolonging the pregnant girl’s suffering.

That was an extraordinarily poor choice of words, at least from my perspective. And extremely offensive. She hasn’t suffered pain, or more than minor discomfort that is normal with pregnancies. She might have been mildly inconvenienced, at best. Her unborn child likely experienced brutal, agonizing pain before dying, on the other hand.

Jane Doe’s pregnancy had advanced far enough that the callous, brutal abortion method known as dilation and extraction might have become the fate of Jane Doe’s unborn child. It’s tough to watch, but everyone who believes a woman should have the right to choose to abort a child for the sake of convenience needs to watch, and learn.

Gianna was very lucky because the abortion doctor wasn’t there when she was born. One ugly but little-known truth about abortions are the many documented cases of babies accidentally born alive during botched abortions but immediately murdered by the incompetent attending doctor.

And if that isn’t appalling enough to know, Planned Parenthood has advocated for that doctor to be exempt from prosecution for the crime of infanticide, and failing to honor his or her Hippocratic oath to first, do no harm.

When Salon recently claimed writer Patrick Tomlinson had allegedly “shut down” the anti-abortion argument with a thought experiment, I encouraged him to consider an alternate perspective (mine) on the argument with an appropriate consideration for human life, but was told that my opinions were not welcome in the conversation. Fine.

The argument will continue, with or without Mr. Tomlinson. Besides, he didn’t seem to have anything of substance to contribute to the discussion, other than hot air.

“Remember, we are talking about a child here,” Judge Patricia Millett wrote as part of her opinion that paved the way for Jane Doe’s abortion. With all due respect, Judge Millett, I’m pretty sure we’re actually talking about killing an unborn baby merely for the sake of convenience for Jane Doe.

The girl was old enough to get pregnant by consensual sex, but decided she didn’t want to be burdened with a child of her own after the fact. With the help of five other liberal colleagues on the court appointed by Democrat politicians, Judge Millett allowed her terminate her pregnancy, and forced taxpayers like me to pay for it. Supporters of abortion rights  can pretend the debate is over by trying to ignore what their intellectual opposition has to say, but as long as there is breath in my body, I will not be quiet.

I’ll always listen to the other side of the conversation, but not to a lecture from some mental midget who doesn’t even know that science has clearly defined conception as the beginning of human life. Reasonable people ought to be able to reach some sort of fair compromise in regard to the most popularly cited examples of why abortions are believed to be necessary: rape and incest, the primary reasons given for having an abortion in only one percent of all cases.

Conversely, the inconvenience of having a child (expense, responsibility, lack of maturity) is the reason most frequently provided. “Reasonable” people must be willing to listen to reason.

Many abortion procedures that are currently legal are barbaric, and even medieval. They kill the child, but also may endanger the life of the mother. Perhaps compromise might include very early term medical procedures, or the “morning after” pill. There have to be some options that are negotiable, or the only alternative will be to oppose every abortion under any circumstance, even if the life of the mother is at risk. Even though a fallopian tube pregnancy will be fatal for both the mother and child, if only given the two extreme choices of every abortion being legal  (including partial-birth and post-birth) or none, in order to sleep at night I must vote that none would be legal.

There are other options besides infanticide that are available. Adoption is one of several other options that don’t involve dismemberment inside the womb — if the same thing had been done to a puppy, public outrage would likely be demanding the death penalty for the people responsible. Oddly enough, people seem to care a great deal more when the pregnant bitch is canine.

Abortion should not be treated just another form of birth control, no different than a condom or a pill. When the “fetus” has grown to the point of having arms, legs, and a head, it’s no longer debatable whether or not the fetus is a child. And it shouldn’t be debatable at that point as to whether or not it should be legal to kill it.

When “pro-choice” advocates say that a pro-life people aren’t part of the conversation about abortion, that doesn’t count as victory in the debate. It simply demonstrates how some people aren’t willing to listen. Perhaps the pro-abortion advocates understand that at the core their argument is indefensible — that an unborn child in the womb doesn’t remotely resemble a tumor or a lump of fat. By the time a child has developed for 16 weeks in the womb physically looks virtually indistinguishable from what like it will 20 weeks later, when the baby is finally ready to be born. It may not be ready for birth at 16 weeks, but it has a body, two arms, two legs, a head…and most significantly, a heartbeat.

It really doesn’t matter if some like Mr. Tomlinson refuses to speak with me. The conversation will continue with or without him.

Some feminists like to make bold and aggressive claims that are intended to bully and intimidate weak-minded men into submission. Men are often told they have no right to have an opinion about what a woman may or may not do with her own body.

However, regardless of what that feminist might think, it doesn’t matter when my money is being used to torture and kill the unborn child inside her body. I do have every right to express my opinion on this subject, whether liberals and feminists like it or not.

These critics will also complain that “…you don’t know what it’s like” or might exclaim something like “you don’t have a uterus, so you don’t have a say,” or some such nonsense, yet often those people apparently know even less about abortion than I do.  A claim does not become true simply because someone wants it to be. As long my heart continues to beat, I’ll have a say: it’s called a vote. Everyone has one, but many are too lazy or unmotivated to use it. I vote virtually every time an election is held.

Jane Doe got her abortion. She only needs to be given one last gift from the American taxpayer — a plane ticket home. It’s time to permanently deport her.

 

Should a Christian doctor perform abortions?

Dr. Willie Parker sat onstage, smiling and then applauding when actress Martha Plimpton bragged that a Seattle doctor had performed the best (her first) abortion when she was only 19, ironically the very same age Ms. Plimpton was as she played a teenage mother in the movie Parenthood.

She champions the “A Is For…” cause where the incomplete thought is intended to terminate with the word “abortion”, so it isn’t terribly surprising that she’d publicly boast about having multiple abortions. A better question might be to ask Dr. Parker his reasons for being there.

This puff-piece article by Newsweek attempts to justify Dr. Parker’s curious choice by tugging on the reader’s heartstrings. The alleged turning point in Dr. Parker’s career as an obstetrician as he “evolved” into an abortion provider came when a 12-year-old incest victim who was 23 weeks pregnant with her father’s child came to his office for help.

[WARNING: Video content is very graphic.]

Although Parker refused to perform the abortion himself, he referred the girl to a colleague who terminated the pregnancy by killing the fully formed but unborn child in the womb.

As a Christian, it isn’t difficult to feel great compassion and sympathy for the tragic young victim of incest. However, Dr. Parker claims to have performed more than 10,000 abortions over the course of his career, averaging more than 1,000 per year. Statistically speaking, we can be sure that only a small fraction of those were conceived by rape or incest.

Dr. Parker identifies himself as a Christian, yet perversely describes the abortion procedure as a “moral good.” Indeed, the portrait of him painted by the flattering Newsweek article is a heroic figure who sacrificed his penthouse in Honolulu to serve the poor pregnant women in Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi. He uses comfortable euphemisms for abortion such as “reproductive rights” and “pro-choice” while arguing that providing abortions to women on demand was a moral choice, while insisting he remains a Christian and a follower of Jesus.

Parker even has the audacity to claim that

I am doing God’s work.

That’s an odd and very bold claim for a religious person to make. I wish I had that same sort of confidence about my own work, but it’s not like God whispers His approval to me on a regular basis, even though I did once write a book titled Counterargument for God.

Because I’m not God, it’s way above my pay grade to judge the authenticity of Dr. Parker’s religious convictions. But one has to wonder if the Creator of all life considers it the moral obligation and responsibility of a physician, a profession dedicated to healing, to participate in the voluntary, arguably capricious premature end of life.

Dr. Parker also claimed his religious beliefs aren’t open for debate, correctly suggesting that other Christians cannot judge him. He said:

If Christianity is defined as being obligated to be homophobic, to be anti-immigrant, to be anti-non-Christian, or to be anti-women, then I’m not. But I’m glad it’s not open to an individual interpretation of another person who holds the same faith identity that I do to determine my authenticity and my integrity.

Hmmm. It seems that Dr. Parker (sort of) has a point. Jesus didn’t tell us that we should be homophobic, anti-immigrant, or basically anti-social jerks. Indeed Christians have been advised they should love their neighbors as themselves, to love the sinner but hate the sin, and that little children are blessed, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Dr. Parker also claims that as both a Christian and a scientist, he “knows” that life doesn’t begin at conception. While that’s an interesting claim to make from a scientific perspective considering the fact that even a fertilized egg is a living cell, it’s also a curious thought for Christians to contemplate in light of Jeremiah 1:5, which reads:

Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you.

But perhaps Dr. Parker’s Bible says something different than mine. Determined to end any debate with a preemptive strike, Dr. Parker doubled down and said,

If God is in everything, and everyone, then God is as much in the woman making a decision to terminate her pregnancy as in her Bible.

That sounds suspiciously like pantheism to me, but we’ve already established that it isn’t my place to judge Dr. Parker or his Christian faith. But I am allowed to question his scientific claim — if life doesn’t begin at conception, when does it begin?

The Newsweek article asserts that Dr. Parker won’t perform 3rd trimester abortions himself, but refers patients who need them to abortion providers who will do late term abortions. Why not? Why does Dr. Parker draw the line somewhere, arbitrarily, between conception and birth?

How are the unwashed masses, people like you and me, supposed to know where the lines have been drawn? Incredibly, representatives for Planned Parenthood have testified before Congress that they believe a woman’s right to choose extends beyond childbirth.

Which, of course, is infanticide.

Dr. Parker suggests that his motives are pure, and his goal is to “help” women manage their reproductive rights properly, or some such nonsense. His compassion seems to evaporate once the patient has used his services, making no mention of survivor stories of abortion regrets.

In the Bible, it says Yahweh especially detested worshippers of Molech, because they were willing to sacrifice their children to a false god.

So how do you think God feels about a culture willing to sacrifice millions of their own children, only for the sake of convenience?

The Babe Unborn – Eugenics in Iceland




What does it say about us as a people when we think that life is only worth living if lived according to our terms?

Eugenics refers to the belief that the human race can be “improved” through “scientific” measures which restrict or limit childbearing (those terms are in quotes because eugenics is neither scientific – in the proper sense of the term – nor does it lead to humanity’s improvement).

In former days, various countries engaged in eugenics through forced sterilization programs of “undesirables.”  The United States, Canada, and many other countries adopted laws to enforce the practice in the early 20th century (encouraged by advocates such as Margaret Sanger, founder of Planned Parenthood).  The United Kingdom was prevented from doing so by virtue of the opposition of the writer and lay theologian G. K. Chesterton who wrote Eugenics and Other Evils as a polemic against the policy.  The most infamous advocate of eugenics was Nazi Germany, which engaged in sterilization and abortion programs.

The point of all these programs was to prevent the birth of “undesirables.”  For at its core, eugenics views the value of a human life in terms of its utility.  Those born to poor parents, or those born with disabilities are seen as having less utility, being a greater “burden” on society, and having a lower quality of life.  Today, with forced sterilization programs politically untenable, abortion is being promoted as a way to achieve the same ends.

Thus, we come to a story about Iceland where Down syndrome has nearly been “eradicated,” as the article euphemistically states it.  For by “eradicated” what is meant is that children in the womb who are believed to have Down syndrome are aborted (Patricia Heaton, among others, quickly noticed this as well).  The “eradication” is a result of the high incidence of prenatal tests which look for the genetic markers which indicate the likelihood of Down syndrome.





Defenders of the practice often appeal to the fact that life for the child with Down syndrome will be difficult or “complicated.”  What does it say about us as a people when we think that life is only worth living if lived according to our terms?  Can we take no joy in, or enjoy the wonder of, life just for the sake of life itself?  Can we not recognize that a human life, in and of itself, is valuable and worth living because it is a gift from God?

Indeed, although G. K. Chesterton wrote an entire book against these sorts of evils, perhaps his most profound statement is made through his short poem, “By the Babe Unborn:”

If trees were tall and grasses short,
    As in some crazy tale,
If here and there a sea were blue
    Beyond the breaking pale,

If a fixed fire hung in the air
    To warm me one day through,
If deep green hair grew on great hills,
    I know what I should do.

In dark I lie; dreaming that there
    Are great eyes cold or kind,
And twisted streets and silent doors,
    And living men behind.

Let storm clouds come: better an hour,
    And leave to weep and fight,
Than all the ages I have ruled
    The empires of the night.

I think that if they gave me leave
    Within the world to stand,
I would be good through all the day
    I spent in fairyland.

They should not hear a word from me
    Of selfishness or scorn,
If only I could find the door,
    If only I were born.

California’s Governor Brown Says This, Not Abortion, Should Be Democrat Litmus Test

Intelligence — no longer just a litmus test for good parenting skills in Oregon.

On Sunday, California governor Jerry Brown weighed in on the Democratic Party controversy over whether abortion should be a litmus test for becoming a party candidate, arguing, according to The Hill, that it would not be a helpful standard nationwide.

“Well, the litmus test should be intelligence, caring about, as Harry Truman or Roosevelt used to call it, the common man,” Brown told NBC’s “Meet the Press” when asked by host Chuck Todd if abortion should be the litmus test for his party.

“We’re not going to get everybody on board. And I’m sorry, but running in San Francisco is not like running in Tulare County or Modoc, California, much less Mobile, Alabama.”

In calling for a less ideological party, Brown is attempting to be pragmatic about local variations across the country, but his advice is more crucial to the future of the Democratic Party than he may even realize.

The Democratic civil war over the abortion issue is taking place between what can be termed the “violence and death” wing of the party and the “compassionate, but misguided” wing. The former is the wing that violently protests any speakers whose speech they don’t approve of and excuse riots in response to unfavorable presidential elections. They see the ends as justifying any means. The latter are those who, like Brown said, care about the common man, but they are wrong that liberal policies will improve the lives of Americans. They, unlike the violence and death wing, are generally pro-choice, again for compassionate, but misguided reasons, but are not dogmatic about others adhering to their views.

As millennial Christians break with their parents’ generation regarding the GOP in the age of Trump, some may be curious about other parties. The Democratic Party will rarely be seen as an option if it insists on being pro-choice. If they want to take advantage of the potential to pick up a slice of an engaged voting bloc, Democrats needs to begin to see Christians not as religious extremists, but as people with legitimate views. In short, the more compassionate, less violence-and-death-oriented wing needs to triumph. Again, Governor Brown seems to recognize this better than most:

“So I’d say, look, even on the abortion issue, it wasn’t very long ago that a number of Catholic Democrats were opposed to abortion. So the fact that somebody believes today what most people believed 50 years ago should not be the basis for their exclusion,” Brown explained.

Brown and other big tent Democrats have their work cut out for them. Newsmax recently summarized the intra-party civil war over abortion, after Ben Ray Lujan, Democratic representative from New Mexico, told The Hill that the party would provide financial support to pro-life candidates.

Former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean, who ran the Democratic National Committee from 2005 to 2009, responded on Twitter to Lujan’s remarks, stating: “I’m afraid I’ll be withholding support for the DCCC if this is true.”

 

That may have been one of the milder reactions. Among the others:

 

Liberal journalist Lauren Duca called the move “a betrayal of every woman who has ever supported the Democratic Party.”

 

Destiny Lopez, co-director of the pro-abortion group All Above All, released a news release stating “It’s short-sighted and dangerous to pave the path to victory in 2018 at the expense of women.”

 

Mitchell Stille, a national campaign director for NARAL, told The Hill: “Throwing weight behind anti-choice candidates is bad politics that will lead to worse policy. The idea that jettisoning this issue wins elections for Democrats is folly contradicted by all available data.”

 

NARAL President Ilyse Hogue tweeted: “Ignoring women’s fundamental freedoms and equality to win elections is both an ethically and politically bankrupt strategy.”

Brown joins Bernie Sanders — also a dissenter on the issue of violent protests who condemned threats against Ann Coulter when she was scheduled to speak at Berkeley — and DNC deputy chairman Keith Ellison, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer, all of whom are themselves pro-choice, in at least allowing for some dissent on the issue. In spite of these influential members, the party is a long way from making a shift on life. As I argued at RedState back in April, “violence is the way the Left is increasingly attempting to solve its problems.” It is moving away from valuing life, not towards it.

As someone who is pro-life above all other issues, I hope that a shift away from abortion occurs within the Democratic Party. I also agree with Governor Brown that the party could use an intelligence litmus test, at least among those who create its slogans. I just don’t see either changing anytime soon.