While Democrats have long supported a woman’s right to choose, this year’s full-throated embrace of abortion rights — from the president down to the most obscure House candidate — marks a historic departure that now places the party as firmly and unyieldingly in support of abortion rights as the GOP is in opposition.

The long-term implications of that shift worry some Democrats — who long shied away from being the party of “abortion on demand,” in the phrase of their GOP opponents, to avoid alienating voters who favor some restrictions or find it morally troubling. But with the White House and Senate hanging in the balance, Obama and the party have replaced that political caution with a new political calculus — that it’s the GOP that looks extreme and out of touch, particularly to women voters who will help decide the election…

Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List, a group that supports anti-abortion candidates, views the Democratic strategy as “a big gamble.”

“The threshold that has been crossed is that every bit of energy has been placed behind this,” she said. “Strategy, messaging and tactics are all aligned with that full embrace. It’s a gift for us. It’s 100 percent clarity on where they stand.”