72% of Republicans Believe in a Woman’s Right to Choose
Washington, D.C. – Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney wriggled his way through Sunday’s debate in a transparent display of pandering to the extreme right-wing of the Republican Party. When questioned on his record as a pro-choice Governor of Massachusetts, Mr. Romney did all he could to deny his past and portray himself as an opponent of choice. This comes from a man who can be seen in a 1994 Senatorial debate on YouTube burnishing his pro-choice credentials, and whose past campaign literature lauded him as “a strong supporter of a women’s rights” who “has promised to protect a woman’s right to choose.” It seems that Mr. Romney has flip-flopped on the issue of choice under the assumption that the majority of Republicans want the issue of the right to choose to be a central focus point of the GOP. This assumption is wrong. Real Republicans are far more socially tolerant that Mr. Romney believes. Recent polling from a renowned Republican polling agency suggests that his anti-choice rhetoric does not speak to the real Republican majority; rather, it is geared toward a small, vocal minority, the “super-moralists.” Here are some noteworthy findings from the poll:
• 72% of Republicans asserted the government should not play a role in controlling choices for women, believing instead that the decision to have an abortion should lie with women, their doctors, and their families.
• 53% of the Party believed that the GOP has spent too much time focusing on moral issues such as abortion and gay marriage.
• Within the 24% of Republicans who comprise the “moralist” wing of the Party, more than one-third of those could support a candidate who differed with them on the issue of abortion if they agreed on other issues. Thus, only 15% of the GOP is comprised of the “super-moralists”– narrowly-focused, single issue voters for whom opposition to abortion is the primary issue driving their vote.
• An overwhelming 71% of Republicans ranked issues such as national security, balancing the budget, Social Security and education as top GOP priorities.
(Fabrizio/McLaughlin poll, June 2007)
Mr. Romney needs to wake up and smell the poll numbers. Candidates who wish to lead the country and lead in Congress must appeal to the broadest spectrum of voters, and not twist their positions and the facts to fit the mold of the far right’s obstinate ideal. Real Republicans seek to bring people together and forge common sense solutions. Real Republicans value privacy, responsibility, small government and individual liberty. Most importantly real Republicans understand that our country is at a crossroad and we need true leadership and a focus on urgent issues like the war on terror, solutions to the crisis in Iraq and reigning in government waste and spending. Now is the time for real Republicans to remember our roots, our history and our record for success in this country.
The time for pandering is over.