Monday, May 07, 2007

Rudy Gave Money To Planned Parenthood

Rudy Giuliani's stump speech on abortion:

On the campaign trail, Giuliani has a consistent mantra when the abortion issue comes up. "I'm against abortion. I hate it. I wish there never was an abortion, and I would counsel a woman to have an adoption instead of an abortion," Giuliani said last month in Columbia, S.C., in a typical comment.

One problem with the above mantra: if Rudy hates abortion so much, why did he and his former wife, Donna Hanover, make personal donations to national, state and city chapters of Planned Parenthood in 1993, 1994, 1998, and 1999?

Seems like an inconsistency on this issue, no?

His Repub opponents think so and they're bragging that they've got tons of tape showing Rudy to be a very enthusiastic abortion rights advocate. Stuff like this:

In 2001, appearing at a NARAL/Pro-Choice America luncheon, he voiced the conservative case for abortion rights, arguing that it "might be more consistent with the philosophy of the Republican Party.

"Because the Republican Party stands for the idea that you have to restore more freedom of choice, more opportunity, more opportunity for people to make their own choices rather than the government dictating those choices," said Giuliani.

I just don't see how Rudy wins over social conservatives with stuff like this in his past.

UPDATE: The Washington Post says Rudy is taking hits for his "rambling and sometimes contradictory responses" on the abortion issue and his donations to Planned Parenthood. Here's how a visit to Laura Ingraham's show went for Rudy yesterday:

Under grilling by Ingraham, Giuliani said his financial support for Planned Parenthood -- he gave about $900 in the mid-1990s -- was driven by a desire to increase adoptions in New York City. Planned Parenthood, one of the largest providers of reproductive services, including abortion, also counsels about adoption and parenting.

"My idea of a choice is that it should be a real choice and that ultimately, then, you have to respect a woman's consciousness," Giuliani told Ingraham and listeners on 340 radio stations nationwide. "I think life is enormously important, but so is personal liberty."

Ingraham pressed Giuliani, asking him whether stories about the birth of a 22-week-old baby affected him. Giuliani said they did, calling the debate about abortion "a deeply personal" issue. He stressed that Americans understand the difference between personal beliefs and public policy.

"So why people think this is such a contradiction, I don't get. I think it's entirely consistent," he said.

When Ingraham ended the segment with a standard line about his returning again, a clearly agitated Giuliani responded: "I would love to come back, but you're going to have to ask me about the war on terror and what we do about the economy, which is after all what most citizens ask me about."

"Well, conservatives are citizens, too, Mayor Giuliani!" Ingraham responded. "We're citizens, too."

How many attacks can Rudy take on this issue before he blows his top and we get one of those "ferret moments" Rudy was so famous for before he became more famous as America's Mayor?

If I have learned one thing in life, it's that a man has just about as much business pontificating about what to do about a problem pregnancy as a cat does driving a Formula 1 race car. There are times when a man not only doesn't belong in the driver's seat, he shouldn't be along for the ride unless he's part of the family, and his job is to shut the f___ up and hand over his check book when asked.

Why the fundies have selected this as the litmus test of tribal membership, I have no idea, but those that pander to them are even less rational than those they pander to.
Well said, kicksiron. I happen to agree w/ Rudy on the issue, mostly, I just delight in watching him twist himself into a pretzel to try and make the fundies in his party happy (when you no that no matter what, he won't, so he ought to just be upfront about his past and current support.)
kicksiron, you wrote:

"If I have learned one thing in life, it's that a man has just about as much business pontificating about what to do about a problem pregnancy as a cat does driving a Formula 1 race car."

Really? Why is that?

About 1.4 million abortions are performed in the US every year. Are they ALL aimed at terminating "problem pregnancies"?

You wrote:

"There are times when a man not only doesn't belong in the driver's seat, he shouldn't be along for the ride unless he's part of the family, and his job is to shut the f___ up and hand over his check book when asked."

In other words, even though women have been fighting for equal rights for a long time, they -- and you -- believe women should enjoy equal rights except when they hold special priviledges that allow individual women to decide upon matters of life and death.

My views on abortion are the same as Rudy's. However, since I was adopted, I think that option deserves more support.
n_s, I probaly need to define what I meant by "problem pregnancy". At the least serious, it might be "I think we need to move up the wedding date by a couple of months"; at its worst, it might be "No surgery, chemo or radiation. I'm pregnant." There's a big range of what one could consider a problem, and only a fraction are "solved" by abortion. While all voluntary abortions are the result of problem pregnancies, the reverse is not true.

Until men are able to give birth, and learn what it is to have a profound lifelong bond with a child, no, I'm afraid that men DON'T have rights equal to a woman's when it comes to pregnancy and child rearing.

While I would even agree with Rudi and Jimmy Carter that abortion is a terrible option to choose, sometimes it is the best of terrible options. Contraception is far better ALWAYS, and if we can't reliably change people's behavior, then, if we have to have condoms, the Pill, and even the Morning-After Pill available in our high school and college councelors' offices, that's what we should be doing (and Rudi shouldn't be afraid to piss the fundies off by saying so).

My big problem is with the fundies that are saying that any woman who finds herself pregnant outside of holy matrimony is a Jezabel who deserves to live with all the worst consequences of her "sin", and to do so without a lick of help from them.
Before I draw a red flag on that last one, let me say I realize there's not a public school system in the country that could risk the medical liability for dispensing the Pill or RU-486, even if the consent issue weren't at least as big a problem. It's not a question on college campuses because the young women are over the age of consent and colleges are recognised as acting in loco parientis.

There's not a real solution to this one -- there's not a 15-year-old girl in the country who doesn't consider herself old enough to make her own decisions with regard to sex, and damn few parents who would agree with that assessment.

Could you imagine the uproar if there were a high school course for both boys and for girls titled "Alternatives to Intercourse (And I Don't Mean Miniature Golf)"? But that's exactly what's needed, although I suspect teens know virtually all the material the course could cover already.
kicksiron, I teach two classes of college bound seniors every year. Along w/ teaching them about college level work, financial aid, the admissions process, etc., I also want to teach them about waiting to have children until they are absolutely ready financially, emotionally, mentally, and career and relationship wise. Nothing short circuits a promising future and perpetuates another generation of poverty like an early pregnancy.
rbe, your students are lucky to have wise councel. Giving them the truth, the whole truth and nothing but is the surest way to get them to make the wise decisions you made (or wish you had made).
Last year, I had 8 students who were pregnant during the Spring semester. 8.

This year, I had 2. One (who had aborted a previous pregnancy) had the child. The other had an abortion.

It really is sad.
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