Quotes of the Day
Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee indicated Thursday that if elected, he wouldn’t rule out employing federal troops or the Federal Bureau of Investigation to stop abortion from taking place in the United States.
Though the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against bans on abortion, Huckabee said past presidents have defied Supreme Court rulings.
The comments came at two public speaking stops on a tour of Iowa.
In response to a question from the audience at the Pizza Ranch in Jefferson, Iowa, Huckabee said he would “invoke the 5th and 14th amendments for the protection of every human being.”
Now you might think ol’ Erick’s just an inflated bloviater whose chosen style is the bullyboy threat of a political commissar. But the thing is he’s going to be the impresario of the Republican presidential cattle call next weekend (the Red State Gathering, in Atlanta) that will come immediately after the first candidate debate, with ten candidates currently confirmed: Jeb Bush, Scott Walker, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee, Rick Perry, Chris Christie, Carly Fiorina, Bobby Jindal, and yes, even Donald Trump. This will be the event at which “winners” at the debate try to spin madly and consolidate their gains, while “losers” seek to make a quick recovery. It’s a pretty big deal, and additionally, historians will someday recognize that its counter-scheduling against the Iowa Straw Poll had a lot to do with that one-time major “winnowing” event falling to its death.
I somehow don’t think any of these candidates are going to be allowed to leave Atlanta without answering their host’s insanely furious demands for a government shutdown to “defund” Planned Parenthood.
It’s interesting, this phase of political history where the configuration of forces in Washington means that the GOP cannot insist on having its way without risking or executing a government shutdown. And that in turn means that the big competition among conservative activists is to have the cause that’s the latest pretext for a government shutdown, whether it’s Obamacare, the debt ceiling, immigration policy or the Iran Nuclear Deal.
Now the antichoicers are putting in their bid to be the constituency that rules the roost.
Republican lawmakers can forget about defunding Planned Parenthood for now — because it will never happen with a Democratic president in the White House, Sen. Lindsey Graham tells Newsmax TV.
“We may get a majority but we’ll never get a bill signed into law that defunds Planned Parenthood because Obama won’t sign it,” Graham, a South Carolina Republican and GOP presidential candidate, said Thursday on “The Steve Malzberg Show.”
“So if you want to defund Planned Parenthood, replace Obama, and do a lot of things that we would like, like build the [Keystone] pipeline, you’d better get a new president.”
Planned Parenthood has been under fire for a series of undercover videos released by the conservative Center for Medical Progress that show officials discussing the sale of aborted fetal organs for research.
The footage spurred Republican lawmakers to demand an investigation of Planned Parenthood, which they say should not receive federal funds until it is concluded. According to Planned Parenthood’s annual report, it has received $4.3 billion in government funding over the last 10 years.
But Graham told Steve Malzberg:
“I don’t want to tell people on your show that we have the votes to defund Planned Parenthood because you’d have to override the presidential veto. Do you think Obama would veto a bill that would defund Planned Parenthood?”
We have passed the point where Nazi comparisons are inappropriate. In the latest video about Planned Parenthood, if you want to watch it, you will see an admission that some of the children are born alive before being killed and carved up — their bodies being sold essentially for scrap.
These are children. They entered into the world alive and were killed, chopped up, and sold bit by bit.
“It’s a boy,” one person commented in the latest film. They talk about the commoditization of children’s eyeballs (the ones in the video were not developed enough), hearts that turn to mush they are so small, and reference the legs, feet, and hands of the children.
They are children being killed, butchered, and sold in pieces. The video is unedited. Planned Parenthood is kiling them, gleefully, for cash. They want their Lamborghinis.
The White House on Friday threatened a veto on any bill that defunds Planned Parenthood.
A budget measure that strips funding from the organization “is certainly something that would draw a presidential veto,” press secretary Josh Earnest said.
“We have routinely opposed the inclusion of ideologically driven riders” in budget bills, Earnest added.
It is the first time the White House issued a veto threat against Republican efforts to defund Planned Parenthood since an anti-abortion group began releasing secretly recorded videos.
Senate Republicans have taken aim at the women’s health group in recent weeks on the heels of videos that the Center for Medical Progress claims show Planned Parenthood officials trying to sell parts of aborted fetuses, which would be illegal.
Liberals and abortions rights advocates insist that the videos are selectively edited to smear Planned Parenthood, which has been targeted repeatedly by political attacks in recent years.
An antiabortion group that has said it has proof that Planned Parenthood “sells” fetal tissues for profit released a fourth video Thursday, this one featuring undercover footage of a Planned Parenthood employee discussing the details of fetal parts, and worries about the perception of that process.
The video comes as Planned Parenthood and its opponents battle over the organization’s future in Congress, in the courts and even on the women’s health organization’s own Web site.
The video was recorded in April, according to the Center for Medical Progress, with actors posing as representatives of an out-of-state company that procures fetal parts for researchers. The CMP identifies the Planned Parenthood official as Savita Ginde, vice president and medical director of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains. In the video, the group discusses a potential contract for fetal parts.
The White House described undercover videos of Planned Parenthood officials selling fetal tissue as “fraudulent” Thursday and said President Obama will reject efforts to strip federal funding from the organization, setting up yet another potential shutdown showdown for September.
Senators will vote early next week on a bill to defund the organization, though that’s likely to fail. But some Republicans are already vowing to try to use the annual spending deadline of Sept. 30 to force the issue, saying they won’t vote for any spending bills that include money for Planned Parenthood.
As leadership paves the way for a vote to cut off money to the organization’s clinics around the country, Sens. Joe Manchin, a Democrat, and Susan Collins, a Republican, are working quickly to hammer out a bipartisan compromise that would avoid defunding the organization outright. Whether their bill would even have support of leadership, however, is an open question.
The idea is to find a middle ground between taking away all of the money allocated to Planned Parenthood and ensuring that women’s health care, from birth-control consultations to routine checkups, is still covered.
Collins says she was “horrified” and “troubled” by videos that purport to depict Planned Parenthood health care providers discussing the selling of fetal tissue, but she worries that cutting off the flow of funding to the organization could have unintended consequences for women’s health. As it currently stands, Planned Parenthood is not allowed to use federal funding for abortion services. Instead, the money in question goes directly to other functions of the organization, from health screenings to family planning.
Stem cells hold terrific promise for the treatment—and, eventually, the defeat—of ALS. The most useful stem cells are found in fertilized embryos and fetuses, where they haven’t yet developed into specialized cells. (Scientists can also reprogram adult cells to act like embryonic stem cells, but these reprogrammed cells, while useful for research, have not been shown to be therapeutically safe.)
The first Food and Drug Administration–approved clinical trials to treat ALS with fetal stem cells are already underway. Any treatment derived from fetal tissue is many years away at best, but the early research has been a success. Stem cells injected into ALS patients’ spinal cords have survived for years and have caused few side effects. The cells seem to protect diseased motor neurons, stimulating their survival. With motor neurons restored to health, muscle atrophy slows or ceases. The experimental treatment slowed or reversed the progression of the disease in several patients in a small Phase I clinical trial.
One patient, whose muscles had degenerated to the point that he couldn’t walk without a cane, abandoned his cane months after the trial began. He later participated in a 2.5-mile walkathon. That was in 2011. He remains alive and well today. The treatment also effectively halted disease progression in the other five patients still in the early stages of ALS. It was a stunning leap forward in ALS treatment. A Phase 2 trial, with new patients, further demonstrated the safety and effectiveness of the therapy; symptoms improved in seven of 15 patients.