Friday, August 06, 2004

Dueling Opinions: Jobim's Fifth Response To Me

A few things,

- On the partial birth legislation, the lack of the exceptions Kerry
complains about are irrelevant. It only banned a particular type of
abortion, so anyone affected by the ban could still get an abortion for any
of those reasons, just not the partial-birth procedure. Can [Finnegan]
find any evidence of Kerry supporting any limit on abortion?
- On the polls, so a majority of Americans (60%) support limits on abortion.
This is not "pro-choice" accoridng to any of the various abortion
organizations (NARAL, PPA, NAF, etc.). Note also that when the question
is asked more Americans call themselves "pro-life" than "pro-choice," though
the numbers are very close (47-44 in the last poll I saw from this spring).
- Bush has siad repeatedly he would not seek to prohibit abortion until he'd
changed the hearts and minds of a majority of Americans on the issue.
- On Roe, [Finnegan] is wrong on the Supreme Court. The last abortion
case, Stenberg v. Carhart, was indeed 5-4, but (as I already noted) Justice
Kennedy held that the law in questions (the Nebraska partial birth statute)
was not protected by Roe as reinterpreted by Casey. So, there are still 6
votes to protect the "essential holding" of Roe. I teach these cases
every year. There is no dispute on this fact. I know some of the activist
groups claim otherwise, but they are lying. (I'm sorry, but there is no
other word for it.)
- On the FMA, parse Bush's statement from the state of the union and read
the conservative complaints about Senator Hatch's proposed language. I'd
agree that Republican Senators may have preferred to have the issue than the
victory, and so didn't propose more moderate amendment language, but the
Bush Administration would support such an amendment, and Kerry would oppose
- As for where the American people are, most oppose gay marriage, and a
constitutional amendment is basically a dead heat. (see
- On trade, the Democratic party has recently gone off the deep end of this
issue (which is a real problem for the future of trade liberalization).
Kerry himself has been luke-warm to the more recent trade agreements
negotiated by this administration, is a demagogue on outsourcing (which is
really a free-trade issue), and supports hamstringing trade agreements with
all sorts of labor and environmental side agreements that create the
potential for all sorts of non-tariff barriers. (I'm an advisor to a member
of the USTR Trade and Environment Policy Advisory Committee, and I can
assure you all this is a huge threat to free trade.) So, while Bush has
been a disappointment on trade, I see no reason to believe Kerry would be
any better.

That's all for now. More later.


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