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The Tragic Extinction of the Pro-Life Democrats

12:55 AM, Sep 5, 2012 • By JONATHAN V. LAST
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It’s a fascinating case study in political schizophrenia: Bart Stupak was stampeded into voting for a bill which he didn’t particularly like and must have realized was going to end his political career. The only thing he got in return was a fig-leaf executive order, which the president quickly violated. And today he supports Obamacare and the president more unequivocally than he did three years ago. How can that be?

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It turns out that pro-life Democrats have one final justification. Now that they’ve been compromised into supporting the expansion of abortion by Obama they’re insisting that Republicans would only cause more abortions. And that’s where Stephen Schneck comes in.

Schneck is director of Catholic University’s Institute for Policy Research & Catholic Studies and, as he notes with a smile, associated with the group Catholics for Obama. (He’s the only member of the panel who does not voice opposition to the HHS mandate.) Schneck believes that “The most powerful abortifacient in America is poverty.” He calls the Romney-Ryan ticket “frightening.” And then he asks,

Can a pro-life voter vote for Romney if it means a six, or a seven, or God forbid an eight percent increase in the number of abortions in America? If it means thousands of new deaths among the unborn?

When pressed to show his work on why he believes there would be a massive increase in abortion under Romney, Schneck explains that a third of births are covered by Medicaid, Romney would cut Medicaid by 40 percent, and so, ipso facto, a large percentage of Medicaid births would necessarily be converted to abortions. It’s an amazing claim.

But it’s the only straw left for the pro-life Democrats to grasp. Where they once opposed abortion, however ineffectually, they’re now reduced to actively supporting it—while inventing an alternate universe in which the anti-abortion policies of Republicans actually cause more of them. And if you can’t quite bring yourself to believe it? Then the foundation crumbles. And you either decide to stop being pro-life or stop being a Democrat.

Which is why pro-life Democrats are quickly becoming extinct.

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