Abortion is supposed to be a winning issue for Democrats — the issue they use to mobilize their base and appeal to suburban voters they’ve lost on the economy, crime, the border — just about everywhere else.
Instead, it will be their Charge of the Light Brigade, their Cemetery Ridge, their Little Bighorn. It will be the hill Democratic candidates die on this year.
The party’s establishment doesn’t really buy the media myth that opposition to the reversal of Roe is a magic bullet. But, once again, the agenda is being driven by the “far-woke” fringe.
Whatever the president and his party’s leadership do here — however far they go — it will never be enough for the circular firing squad.
At the urging of pro-abortion protestors, the administration is doing everything it thinks it can get away with. President Biden says he may declare pregnancy a public health emergency, to free up funding for abortion.
There are persistent reports that the administration is flying pregnant illegals from the border to states where they get an abortion. Attorney General Merrick Garland refuses to enforce a law against demonstrations outside the homes of federal judges meant to intimidate.
Adding fuel to the summer of rage, Mr. Biden recently exhorted radicals to “Keep protesting. Keep making your point.” He didn’t offer examples of what he considers First Amendment protest. At the same time, he hasn’t criticized over-the-top tactics like banging drums and blowing whistles outside the homes of justices.
Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg said he was fine with the mob hunting down Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh at a D.C. steak house. “People are upset. They’re going to exercise their First Amendment rights” — like stalking and harassment?
In the meantime, the fringe keeps pushing the envelope. They’re demanding court-packing and floating abortion clinics in the Gulf of Mexico.
Groups like Jane’s Revenge have disrupted church services. Pro-life pregnancy centers across the country have been vandalized and firebombed. Police are investigating suspicious fires in three Bethesda, Maryland, churches over the past weekend.
Crying, “If abortion isn’t safe, neither are you,” the sky is the limit for the post-Roe wrecking crew. Whatever the administration gives them, it will never be enough.
Regardless of their position on abortion, the law-abiding majority will be increasingly alienated by the orgy of violence and by the party that condones it.
What will it profit Democrats in November to appease the nuts today?
According to a USA Today/Suffolk University poll, released on top of the Dobbs decision, just 15% of likely voters say abortion is their most important issue in the coming election, compared to 66% who said the economy (including inflation and gas prices) is more important. Abortion ranked slightly ahead of guns as a factor motivating voters.
The media claim a plurality of Americans want abortion to be legal — adding, almost as an afterthought, in all or some circumstances.
In fact, most voters favor a ban on abortion after 15 weeks. An April Wall Street Journal poll showed 48% supported such a ban, while 43% oppose it.
But the official position of the Democratic Party is abortion up to the moment of birth. Some leaders, like former Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, have taken it further, advocating a “woman’s right to choose” for a newborn lying on a delivery table gasping for breath.
Does the party want voters asking its candidates: “So, do you really favor abortion throughout the nine months of pregnancy — for any reason? What do you call a newborn the mother doesn’t want — an embryo, a fetus, the product of conception? The president has told us, in the case of gun ownership, that the right to defend your life isn’t absolute. So why is taking a life through abortion an absolute right?”
Every time the president and his minions bluster about an “ultra-MAGA” supreme court taking away the sacred right to abort, voters will be wondering: “Why aren’t they talking about gas prices, the difficulty of feeding our families, terrorists and drugs flowing across our border, and cities descending into anarchy?”
The Democratic pundits who say abortion will be a winning issue for their party are whistling past the graveyard. This is a discussion they don’t want to have — about a fight they can’t possibly win — but one which their woke base is forcing on them.
• Don Feder is a former Boston Herald writer and syndicated columnist.