As Cortney covered yesterday, 2020 Democratic presidential hopeful Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) said that she believes some abortion restrictions are appropriate. In an interview with Dave Rubin, Gabbard cited a 'cut off' after the second trimester, stating that elective abortions should be barred in the seventh, eighth and ninth months of pregnancy. National Review's Alexandra Desanctis also notes that Gabbard has declined to co-sponsor more hard-charging pro-abortion legislation, including an effort to end Hyde Amendment protections regarding taxpayer funding of abortion. While it's somewhat heartening to see at least one national Democrat rejecting the party's radical stance -- abortion for any reason, on demand, through (at least) birth, paid for by taxpayers, including for illegal immigrants -- Desanctis expresses well-founded dismay over the reality that Gabbard's stand somehow feels exceptional:
I find it immensely depressing that people are responding to my piece about Tulsi Gabbard opposing *some* third-trimester abortions by calling her a pro-life Democrat. If that’s “pro-life,” things are really bleak!— Alexandra DeSanctis (@xan_desanctis) September 9, 2019
Yes, opposing extreme late-term abortion is preferable to the alternative ('Pastor' Pete recently attempted to claim that the Bible might justify abortion up until an infant's first breath), but this stance should represent the absolute bare minimum in a civilized society. Elective late-term abortion is an abomination, on ethical, moral, scientific and humanitarian grounds. Abortion lobby supporters often dismiss such procedures as rare, but they account for more deaths annually than the entire sum total of mass shooting casualties within the United States in the last half-century. Would any of these abortion apologists claim that large-scale gun homicides should be ignored as a public policy matter? It must also be said that Gabbard's view, though a clear outlier among the 2020 field, is wildly popular. Vanishingly few Americans favor legalized abortion in the third trimester, according to Gallup:
Americans' support for the legality of abortion varies sharply when they are asked to evaluate it on a trimester basis, which is consistent with the pattern Gallup has found for more than 20 years. Six in 10 U.S. adults think abortion should generally be legal in the first three months of pregnancy. However, support drops by about half, to 28%, for abortions conducted in the second three months, and by half again, to 13%, in the final three months.
Abortion is overwhelmingly opposed by the American public starting in the fourth month of gestation. Indeed, it would seem that third trimester extremism is more or less limited to abortion lobbyists, Democratic politicians, and literal abortionists; everyone else understands that ending the lives of fully-formed, viable unborn children is grotesque. I'll also highlight that even within the first trimester, only a minority of Gallup respondents say abortions should be permitted for any reason. And to further reinforce how unpopular and extreme the emerging Democratic consensus has become, here's a data point from a recent Harvard/Harris survey:
Poll: "Just 6% of Americans believe abortion should be the allowed until the moment of birth," most of whom are running for president, apparently.https://t.co/r2vctkzPDt— Guy Benson (@guypbenson) June 4, 2019
Does anyone know precisely where shaky Democratic frontrunner Joe Biden stands on this question? It would be enormously politically advantageous to set himself up as the moderately pro-choice candidate, but he's already tossed previous (and widely-shared) core "convictions" overboard, having been hectored by the abortion fetishists who wield outsized influence over his party. Then again, even as the supposed 'centrist' in the race, Biden's platform has been tugged hard to the left. McClatchy reports:
Many Democrats see Joe Biden as a voice of ideological restraint in a party rapidly moving to the left. But the 2020 Democratic frontrunner’s emerging policy agenda is anything but moderate — at least compared to the party’s last presidential nominee. From health care to climate change to criminal justice, Biden has proposed ideas more ambitious and liberal than policies supported by Hillary Clinton in the 2016 campaign, a McClatchy review of the candidates’ platforms found...Taken as a whole, Biden’s policy platform represents a significant shift from Clinton’s. On nearly every major issue, Biden has either exponentially increased the scope of what Clinton proposed or advocated for new ideas that most Democrats would have up until recently considered fringe.
If Biden is out on the fringe, where does that put the rest of the competition? In response to my own question, I'll leave you with a new "right" being floated by say-anything Beto O'Rourke, who's also managed to yank the conversation about gun control solidly into confiscation territory:
Living close to work shouldn't be a luxury for the rich. It's a right for everyone. pic.twitter.com/lohRdoFGrH— Beto O'Rourke (@BetoORourke) September 10, 2019
Rubin's full interview with Gabbard is here: