It’s become a given that people running for office are going to be asked their views on abortion. And, predictably, those who run on the more conservative end of the political spectrum always come out against it. It’s one reason why, despite abortion remaining a legal medical procedure in the U.S., many women are burdened with restricted providers, medically unsound rules, and a small ocean of red tape if they want to get one. With that sort of climate, lots of voters (particularly women voters), are listening to what the leading presidential candidates are saying about it.
Which is why it’s such a big deal that Donald Trump seems to have finally stepped in something that’s sticking to him.
Pro-Life Politics As Usual?
Something that’s been pointed out about Trump’s presidential campaign is that he’s ignoring all the usual couched language that’s been employed by extreme conservatives in the past to make their positions seem more reasonable. Everything, from his comments on immigration, to the way he talks about protesters, drips with contempt, and is clearly meant to be divisive. There is no attempt at understanding, or reaching across to those with other views; simply a turning up of the volume from the lectern.
Until now, the controversy stirred up by the Trump campaign hasn’t seemed to cause him any negative effects. But, according to CBS News, Trump has felt the need to clarify his comments on abortion. He maintains that it should be illegal, but the comments he made that women who get them should be punished are being softened around the edges. He maintains there needs to be, “some consequences,” but that until the procedure is banned those consequences can’t be decided. It was the first time we’ve really seen him back down from an extreme comment, trying to modify his words.
He also said something else while on the subject; something which would seem to undermine his argument entirely. To paraphrase, if abortion was banned in America, we’d see a return to the days when women would go to illegal providers to have the procedure done. Rather than suggesting we provide proper healthcare for women who need it, including birth control as a way to prevent the need for abortions, Trump instead suggested that making abortion a crime would somehow prevent it from happening.
If it didn’t work then… why would it work now?