McCain: Straight Talk on Abortion

It isn't just tax cuts where it's often hard to figure out exactly where John McCain stands. In case you were wondering--and no wonder you might wonder, as this collection of Big Thoughts from McCain on abortion shows--he's for repealing Roe v. Wade. (Here is a detailed story on where he stood on this back in 2000--not so resolutely anti-Roe.)

While articles like last year's gajillion word tongue bath from Esquire studiously avoid linking love for McCain with any thought about his policy positions, surely this has got to start hurting him with his old media fans.

McCain watchers, keep your eyes open--in the next print issue of Reason (subscribe already!) we'll be presenting an amazing cover feature by our former associate editor Matt Welch, currently with the L.A. Times's op-ed page, on why John McCain's presidential ambitions should make Americans nervous.

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    See?

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    See what?

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    In the history of the Supreme Court, the Roe/Griswald "penumbra" decisions are possibly the most poorly reasoned decisions ever issued by the Court, although the contest is a tight one, what with Brown v. Board, Plessy, and Dred Scott all being in the running.

    So much of the continuing judicial fight over abortion exists because Roe was a case of unprincipled "legislating from the bench." Personally, I'm rabidly pro-choice and think there probably aren't enough abortions, but I recognize that the U.S. Constitution is silent on the matter of the states' ability to regulate the issue.

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    You're pissed off about both Plessy and Brown v. Board? Jeez I guess there is just no pleasing some people.

  • sarcastic dan||

    Yeah, the penumbras aren't in the Constitution. The founders were quite clear that only those rights specifically enunciated in the Bill of Rights were protected from government infringement. Where does anyone get off finding extra rights not specifically listed. If its not specifically listed, let the government regulate it.

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    You're pissed off about both Plessy and Brown v. Board? Jeez I guess there is just no pleasing some people.

    As to the reasoning, yes. Plessy isn't hard to pick apart, but rather than admit they fucked up in Plessy, the Supremes felt the need to go into all kinds of social science bullshit to explain why separate is not equal. Brown was the pinnacle of "judicial imperialism" until Griswald v. Connecticut.

    Yeah, the penumbras aren't in the Constitution. The founders were quite clear that only those rights specifically enunciated in the Bill of Rights were protected from government infringement.

    Funny that those same justices don't seem to detect "penumbras and emanations" concerning economic rights. Or that those same justices who show such concern for the Ninth Amendment have such little regard for the Tenth Amendment.

  • sarcastic dan||

    I agree -- if the judges don't recognize penumbras and emanation for economic rights, they should not recognize penumbras or emanations for any rights. All or nothing is the way to go! Only those rights specifically listed should be recognized. Regulate anything else.

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    John McCain wants to ban abortion, but leave enough loopholes in the law that the daughters of rich, white, well-respected families can secure abortions with little difficulty.

    This is not hard to figure out at all. It's Reagan Republicanism.

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    Reagan said some inspiring things, and some nice things about libertarians, but it seems to me that he only really cared about the liberty of Eastern Europe (at least in practice).

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    On a brighter note, reason's cover looks to be a hatchet job on McCain. That's a good place to start, and I hope it turns into a trend. If they did a hatchet-job cover on each of the big boys between now and election -time; just firing them off month by month with no breaks in between, I'll subscribe!

    A hatchet-job on the cover each month will finish the job the stuffed heart bikini chick started.

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