Kathryn Lopez

"I think we need to redefine 'culture war,'" says Matthew Spalding, author of "We Still Hold These Truths: Rediscovering Our Principles, Reclaiming Our Future." "It usually means social issues fought out in politics. What the left does not understand, and why they don't understand the politics of the moment, is that many (perhaps most) see the administration's agenda, across the board, to be an assault on America's culture of self-government. In this sense, forced payment for abortions is not just or even primarily about abortion but about experts in Washington instructing us about how we make decisions about sensitive matters. The objection is the same as that against Obamacare in general."

An excellent question for social conservatives, fiscal conservatives and plain old voters is the one Chuck Donovan of the Heritage Foundation poses: "Why are U.S. taxpayers borrowing money at a record rate to, in part, provide grants to an organization, Planned Parenthood, which raised $388 million more than it spent from 2002 to 2007?"

He adds: "There might even be a rule there for Congress to consider -- any nonprofit that applies for federal funds should be required to reveal its reserves and explain why the taxpayers and not the nonprofit should bear the cost of the activity the grant covers. The easiest way to get to this result, of course, is to de-fund the grant program until the nonprofit can demonstrate real need for its services."

Sounds peachy to Ryan Hecker, who organized the tea-party "Contract from America" and sees the new House leadership's post-repeal step as a no-brainer: "Over the next two years, Congress must make many hard choices about how to rein in out-of-control spending and our national debt. This may include debates about 'untouchable' entitlement programs and whole executive departments, and unpopular and difficult decisions may need to be made. By contrast, the 'No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act' is an easy one."

If it's the very future of the Republic you're worried about, ask yourself: Unless something has to be paid for by the taxpayers to protect or defend the Constitution, why not cut it?


Kathryn Lopez

Kathryn Jean Lopez, editor of National Review Online, writes a weekly column of conservative political and social commentary for Newspaper Enterprise Association.