Question for pro-choice Dems: If gun control is worth doing if it saves just one life, how about limiting late-term abortions?

Via John McCormack, this makes twice in less than a week that a prominent, proudly pro-choice congressional Democrat has been reduced to stammering non sequiturs after a question about late-term abortion. Last time it was Nancy Pelosi, who explained the difference between what Kermit Gosnell did and what Republicans are trying to ban by mumbling something about her faith and then quickly moving on. Today it’s abortion warrior Diana DeGette, co-chair of the Congressional Pro-Choice Caucus and ardent gun-control advocate. (You might remember DeGette from the post-Newtown debate for suggesting that magazines can’t be reloaded.) Simple question for her: Given what we now know about what Gosnell did, why not endorse restrictions on late-term abortion so that other viable babies aren’t serially murdered? “If it saves just one life” was good enough to justify a big gun-control push. Why isn’t it good enough to justify, shall we say, an abortion-control push? Her answer, transcribed by McCormack:

“Many Democrats, when they were arguing for gun control in the wake of the Sandy Hook shooting said even if this saves one life it will be worth doing. Why not support this bill then, if it undoubtedly will save lives of babies that have been carried throughout 5 months of pregnancy?”

DeGette said, “Well, this is, this is. … We already have laws in many states of this country. This bill is blatantly unconstitutional.”

“And, and if you look at the perceived—if you look at the stated reason of doing this legislation the Kermit Gosnell case, that gentleman was convicted of murder and sentenced to life,” DeGette said. “Any other questions?”

When tried to follow up, DeGette said, “No, excuse me. Any other questions?”

So it turns out that constitutional rights do trump if-it-saves-just-one-life imperatives. Imagine that. The answer DeGette wants to give here, obviously, is that no “life” is in play until the baby emerges alive from the womb, or maybe even a few minutes after. (Planned Parenthood seems ambivalent about whether a doctor should be allowed to finish off an infant outside the womb if it survives the initial abortion attempt.) But that’s an answer Democrats seem increasingly uncomfortable offering publicly. When people look at the Gosnell photos or read the description of him keeping feet in jars as souvenirs and feel sick in their gut, how do you turn around and tell that that wasn’t “life”? Better to run away from the question or fall back on a non sequitur citing the fact that he was, after all, prosecuted. Of course he was prosecuted; the question is, should he have been? Should there be murder laws involved here at all? Watch the second clip for that, as McCormack himself asks her if she’d be comfortable banning abortion at any point of pregnancy. Only a fanatic would refuse to draw any line at all. Guess whether she draws one.

Jazz Shaw Dec 01, 2021 11:01 AM ET