SIMMONS: ‘High stakes’ in the politics of abortion

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Missy Reilly Smith, who has paired up with pro-life Democratic presidential candidate Randall Terry to siphon votes from President Obama, isn’t about to fall into the rabbit hole and start questioning the president’s U.S. citizenship, parentage or even his views on government largesse.

Instead, as a vice-presidential candidate, she is honing in on the theological divide that separates her from the president, D.C. Mayor Vincent C. Gray and other like-minded supporters of abortion rights.

“This is high stakes,” Ms. Smith said in an interview Saturday, “and I’m all in.”

By “all in,” she means deploying the same in-your-face pro-life strategies she used in 2010, when she made a national name for herself as the Republican challenger to D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton, a hugely popular Democrat who is pro-choice.

The issues then and now are abortion, chastity, promiscuity, infidelity and adultery and, believe it or not, hypocrisy.

“I’m outraged by [Mr. Gray],” said Ms. Smith, who, like the mayor, is a Roman Catholic. “The worst thing you can do if you are a public figure and supporting the murder of children and go to Communion is accept Communion. It’s a scandal he receives Communion.”

Ms. Smith’s mightiest aspersions are cast upon abortion in the broadest sense, but she is particularly enraged by politicians and other advocates who target poor populations and communities of color in defense of abortion.

Her concerns are legitimate.

According to statistics released last year by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, blacks make up 12.6 percent of the U.S. population but account for 36.5 percent of the nation’s abortions.

Meanwhile, we have a pro-choice, pro-sex-education president who has said he wouldn’t want either of his daughters “punished with a baby” as teenagers, and the mayor of the nation’s capital and the city’s nonvoting House delegate scream bloody murder (no pun intended) whenever Congress considers prohibitions on government-funded abortions for poor women.

No shrinking violet, Ms. Smith stares at them and their brothers and sisters across the theological divide and calls a spade a spade.

“They are preying on children with abortion. It’s just what Margaret Sanger wanted,” she said of the birth-control-and-eugenics-crusading founder of what now is called Planned Parenthood.

“They are killing babies and supporting gender-selection abortions,” she continued. She went on — and hardly sarcastically, I might add — that, “When a woman is pregnant, we don’t say, ‘We’re having a fetus shower.’ “

Visuals are key to Ms. Smith’s campaign for the vice presidency, just like they were in the 2010 campaign against Mrs. Norton.

Back then, Ms. Smith, who still resides in the District, aired a series of ads highlighting the ugly and violent truths of abortion, ads that were shocking enough to make a grown woman drop to her knees in prayer and ask God to close the great divide.

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About the Author
Deborah Simmons

Deborah Simmons

Award-winning opinion writer Deborah Simmons is a senior correspondent who reports on City Hall and writes about education, culture, sports and family-related topics. Mrs. Simmons has worked at several newspapers, and since joining The Washington Times in 1985, has served as editorial-page editor and features editor and on the metro desk. She has taught copy editing at the University of ...

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