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The irony of watching her, Joy Behar, and Sunny Hostin pile on Alyssa Farah here is that Farah better represents *by far* the mainstream view of abortion in the United States. Apart from the fanatic 20 percent who believe in the right to abort without limits, everyone agrees that a child’s interest in being born affects the moral calculus. Most Americans intuit that that interest is weak relative to the mother’s interest in ending a pregnancy early in her term and grows as the child becomes more recognizably human. Comparatively few people are willing to condone “the full Gosnell” in month nine.
But it looks like a couple of them enjoy a perch on this supposedly mainstream television show, where they get to posture as though they’re the reasonable mainstreamers on this issue.
I’ll pay Whoopi et al. the compliment of assuming that they believe a child has rights once it’s born. Which means, inescapably, they think abortion up to the moment of birth is permissible.
Sunny Hostin thinks people are so angry at the conservative justices that they’re eager to spring to the polls in the midterms and “to vote these people out.”
“And they need to be voted out,” she declared.
That’s not how that works, Sunny. pic.twitter.com/H5tNqKIkEK
— Nicholas Fondacaro (@NickFondacaro) May 12, 2022
One way to reckon with the dilemma of how best to balance a woman’s interests with those of the child she’s carrying is … to not reckon with it. Until the thing in your uterus leaves your body, it’s yours to deal with as you see fit. Plain and simple.
You get nine full months to decide.
Is Hostin right, meanwhile, that abortion is now a top issue for voters commensurate with inflation? Well, sort of. Here’s a new Monmouth poll today:
Abortion now matches the economy, although not inflation per se, in terms of the share of voters who say it’s the most important issue to them. Quote: “Nearly half (48%) of Democrats say a candidate’s alignment with their views on abortion is extremely important to their vote, which is up from 31% who said the same in 2018… Of note, the importance of abortion in the congressional vote has gone up by six points among women (43% extremely important now) and by three points among men (27% now) since 2018.” So, sure, Democratic interest in abortion has risen in the wake of the Alito draft.
But bear in mind that partisan Democrats who were planning to vote for their party this fall come what may were already disinclined to say that the economy was their most important issue. The economy — read: inflation — is widely viewed as terrible. If you’re a liberal who’s planning to vote Dem, obviously the terrible economy won’t be the issue that’s most important to your vote. You’ll be looking around for excuses to vote the way you were inclined anyway. And now you have a good one.
Here’s another new poll from Pew that unfortunately didn’t include abortion in its list of answers. But these inflation numbers — hoo boy.
In a “normal” midterm in which inflation wasn’t a factor, I think the end of Roe could have had game-changing potential for Democrats. In the current climate, as rising prices continue to gobble up wages, I suspect it’ll end up being marginal. It may keep a few seats blue that would have otherwise gone red without the Dobbs ruling but 70 percent calling inflation a big problem is a high mountain for Dems to have to climb.
Of course, the more horror stories there are about unintended consequences in strict anti-abortion legal regimes, the greater the chance of a meaningful backlash:
Dr. Lauren Thaxton, an OB-GYN and assistant professor at the Dell Medical School at the University of Texas-Austin, has already heard about local patients who have been miscarrying, and couldn’t get a pharmacy to fill their misoprostol prescription.
“The pharmacy has said, ‘We don’t know whether or not you might be using this medication for the purposes of abortion,’” she said…
At least several OB-GYNs in the Austin area received a letter from a pharmacy in late 2021 saying it would no longer fill the drug methotrexate in the case of ectopic pregnancy, citing the recent Texas laws, said Dr. Charlie Brown, an Austin-based obstetrician-gynecologist who provided a copy to KHN. Methotrexate also is listed in the Texas law passed last year.
One obstetrician in Texas says he’s heard colleagues admit that they’re reluctant to intervene in a miscarriage now until they’re absolutely sure that the pregnancy isn’t viable. But being absolutely sure can require a lot of bleeding first.
Pro-choicers have material to work with, in other words, but those like the “View” crew would rather take the 20 percent side in a debate over whether there should be any restrictions on abortion. Of course, once Roe goes, many Republicans will opt to take the 10 percent side in a debate over whether there should be a right to abort at any point of a pregnancy. Good times politically for America lie ahead.