The death of pro-choice Republicans

David Daleiden, the man who produced the Planned Parenthood videos, told National Review that the purpose of his exercise was — as the headline noted — to “end the tyranny of euphemisms” and show “buyer and end users haggling over the price of living children and negotiating the ways they will be killed in order to do experiments that they want.”

“Living children”? “Killing”? Seriously? Such terms used to be reserved for late-term abortions, even in the pro-life camp. But the majority of fetuses in Daleiden’s footage were 12 weeks or under, with some in the first month of the second trimester. Deploying such lacerating terminology is meant to create an equivalence between early-term fetuses and live children. This implies that every abortion at any time regardless of circumstances is murder.

This is not a position that is in sync with the intuitions of the vast majority of people. Indeed, even those who self-identify as pro-life have a hard time with a blanket ban unless there are exceptions for rape, incest, and mother’s health. When the GOP tried to impose a 20-week abortion ban with an exception for rape only if the victim filed a police report, pro-life female GOP leaders such as Reps. Rene Ellmers (R-N.C.) and Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) revolted, forcing the bill’s authors to back off.