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May 05, 2022 07:01 AM MDT

The Battle Smart Republicans Didn't Want Is Coming

  • by: Colorado Pols

Colorado Public Radio reporting, with the earth-shaking news this week that the U.S. Supreme Court is internally circulating a draft opinion that overturns Roe v. Wade as well as the Casey v. Planned Parenthood decisions upholding abortion rights, Colorado’s enthusiastic anti-abortion minority is plowing ahead with the next version of what Colorado voters have repeatedly rejected in statewide votes: a constitutional statewide ban on abortion.

The leaked opinion has emboldened abortion-rights opponents. Jeff Hunt from Colorado Christian University’s Centennial Institute, said that his organization will continue to fight on a state level and plans to sue over Colorado’s Reproductive Health Equity Act law.

“It does not bode well for laws when you specifically carve out rights against a class of people,” Hunt said. “So, if you say a class of people — in this case, the preborn — do not have rights in the state, that does not work well in constitutional law. And we may challenge it there.”

Abortion-rights opponents are trying to bring the issue before Colorado voters this year. Angela Eicher and Rebecca Greenwood want to put Initiative No. 56 on the ballot for this year’s midterm elections, which would make abortion illegal.

In addition to a suit against the law just signed by Gov. Jared Polis codifying abortion rights in Colorado statute and the latest version of the so-called “Personhood” constitutional abortion bans headed for the statewide ballot this November, as the Colorado Sun reports, Jeff Hunt wants to roll out billboards touting highly controversial “abortion reversal” for medication abortions:

Anti-abortion groups, meanwhile, are already making plans about how to change the minds of women who come to Colorado seeking to end their pregnancies. Expect more billboards saying it’s not too late to reverse an abortion after ingesting abortion pills, [Pols emphasis] said Jeff Hunt, director of the Centennial Institute at Colorado Christian University.

He predicts more out-of-state money coming to Colorado to fund crisis centers for pregnant women, more volunteers offering “sidewalk counseling” outside abortion clinics, and more money to care for babies.

Just because patients travel to Colorado for care, it doesn’t mean it’s too late to persuade them to keep their pregnancies, Hunt said. “They don’t give up, in our opinion, until the murder has taken place,” he said.

With respect to so-called “abortion reversal,” the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists does not support the practice, saying it is “not supported by science.” As for “more out of state money” to hype abortion politics and harass patients outside Colorado abortion clinics, we’re filing all of that in the same category as another statewide ballot measure to ban abortion on the ballot this November.

A massive political gift to Democrats.

For years before Donald Trump and the MAGA movement scrambled the circuits of Republican politics, smart Republicans in Colorado were desperately working to de-emphasize divisive social wedge issues in their message. The reason is simple: in Colorado, where politics have been trending blue for almost two decades, strident conservative grandstanding on wedge issues is repellent to a majority of voters. After two successive “Personhood” ballot measures went down in flames in 2008 and 2010 burning Republican candidates on the ballot with them, then-GOP Secretary of State Scott Gessler nixed the 2012 Personhood ballot measure by a small number of signatures leading to some accusations of bad faith. But as the Denver Post reported at the time, smart Republicans breathed a sigh of relief:

Republican political consultant Katy Atkinson, when asked if Republicans candidates were relieved to hear personhood would not make the ballot, replied: “If they’re not, they probably should be.”

Well folks, abortion is back in a big way! The anti-abortion single-issue activists Republicans tried to squelch to win elections are energized like they haven’t been in a generation. Local Republican candidates like Heidi Ganahl are disregarding good advice to not talk about abortion and blasting away at the state’s new abortion protection statute. The principal organizer of the early statewide Personhood measures is now the chairwoman of the Colorado Republican Party. Emboldened by Trump’s treacherously skewed Supreme Court, it’s full speed ahead for the “culture war” right in 2022…

Right into the brick wall that awaits them in November. The dynamics of this issue on the ground in this state have not changed. The voters of Colorado can be expected to turn out in overwhelming numbers to support abortion rights just as they have in past elections–perhaps like never before with the threat of losing those rights now very real. At some point, there will be a need for a ballot measure from the left that takes the statutory protections passed by the Colorado legislature this year and enshrines them permanently in the state constitution. We expect that measure will meet a very different fate.

History repeating, plain and simple. Colorado Republicans lost sight of the restraint that might have changed their course after 2014. Now they are plowing heedless into the same mistakes that cost them everything.

In every sense, they are the dog that caught the car.


35 thoughts on “The Battle Smart Republicans Didn’t Want Is Coming

  1. And to think, we could be talking about how to save our planet and our species from extinction.  A double curse on all these assholes who think they can force their ideology on everyone else while ignoring the most precious life there is.  Our planet.  A triple curse. 

  2. Probably a lesson to keep in mind going forward from the perception** of Udall 2014. Campaigns should do well emphasizing the Alito leak, or whatever happens down the pike, but they should keep some strong issues 1A, 1B, etc. near the forefront. Draconian abortion laws don't poll well, but Roe is not always the top visceral issue for a lot of people who might simply oppose these types of laws. So, don't neglect issues like those of the pocketbook, environment, voting, other human rights, geopolitics if running for federal office, public health and safety, etc.

    **Not really defending Udall's 2014 campaign, but he certainly had command of other issues beyond abortion despite the general perception. You can't always fully control what the media or the opposition wants to emphasize, but this time around campaigns oughta try to make sure other issues also get well-publicized as top of mind concerns.

    1. Who says you can't walk and chew gum at the same time?

      Different issues are more salient for different demographic groups. Therefore, you adjust your micro-targeting to adapt to different audiences.

      I think there has been a tendency for Democratic messaging to tone down each of their powerful messages in an effort to offend various parts of the coalition. Instead of helping the cause, it just makes all of their messaging seem weak and ineffective at the most important thing: activating voters.

      1. Definitely not saying anyone can't walk and chew gum at the same time, just hoping campaigns will do what it takes to get out in front of the perception that their candidates can't. IMO there might be a point at which emphasis on abortion reaches diminishing returns, even though I'd say there would still be lots of room to run extremely strong and unambiguous messaging on the issue.

        1. Point taken insightful one.  One the things that Democratic incumbents can do is tout their achievements.  The last two years have seen plenty of things get done.  The negativity is going to be off the charts so voters will appreciate more goofy Hickenlooper ads.

          1. With a bit of planning, the major "negative" message on abortion can be pushed by nonprofits, informal groups of a community's women, and Democratic candidates running in safe districts — 3 US House members without Republican opposition, state reps and senators where registrations make it near impossible to lose, and the like. 

            Others can lean positive, pointing to accomplishments for families, taxpayers, etc. — and pointing out that much of the progress would be stymied if Democrats do not maintain majorities.

  3. I notice in Louisiana and Missouri, they are voting on whether to arrest women for murder if they use the IUD and the morning after pills.

    Also, there are concerns that using online apps to track your monthly cycle will enable the Christian police to discover whether you have had an abortion, or miscarried, which would be the same thing, right?

    Peter Thiel, the libertarian-fascist, has a data company that sells aggregated and dis-aggregated data from apps.

    1. "I notice in Louisiana and Missouri………" do you have a non-paywall link for that? Not disagreeing with you. I'd like to read it.

      There also is supposedly an ability to track peoples' movements via their smartphones to determine if a pregnant woman goes out of state for you-know-what.

      These religious fascists really want to imitate the old Soviet Union, with their systems of spying on others.

      1. "They did this to prevent abortions"

        Doesn't that leave these xenophobic anti-choicers on the horns of a dilemma?

        Do they not fear that by preventing an abortion, they are creating another anchor baby?


        1. Not if they steal the babies and sell them to US citizen couples. There is some evidence that happened. 1400 some children were still missing and unaccounted for in 2019. It’s in same article I linked to. 

            1. America has a long, shameful history of forcefully adopting children of populations they want to subjugate. See the history of Native children kidnapped and kept in missionary schools, and adopted out of them.

              Not all were adopted; some died in missionary custody. Canadian schools have found hundreds of buried, unidentified Native children; US schools so far have found dozens of bodies.

              What’s in it for the evangelicals and MAGA couples? The idea that they are “saving” a barbarian soul. The missionaries believed that they were “taking the Indian out of the Indian”. It’s a gentler form of cultural genocide. As far as “non-white” kids, Central American people have had a wide rspectrum of skin tones since the days of the Conquistadores.

              Some older migrant kids were actually trafficked as wage or sex slaves. There was no “adoption”, no pretense of caring, simply exploitation.

              Since Biden’s election, the separation of families at the border, and presumably the shady adoption and trafficking have stopped; however, the system is still unable to track ~ 1500 kids that had already come in to the US. Decades from now, we may know the full harm that was done to these innocents.

    1. Yes, I named a bunch of them on another post. I'll add that Governor Chris Sununu (R-NH) is pro-choice through the 24 weeks up to viability.

  4. Republicans will ban abortion and dems will whine and cry and do nothing about it. We have lost our rights and there is no political party that will fight to get them back. Dems will not add more justices to the court, they will condemn our children to a right wing theocratic fascist stolen court for the rest of their lifetimes. There is no happy outcome. Voting for dems will change nothing as dems have shown.

    1. I actually think Denise might be a real person, having watched a music video. That said, I also think Denise is flat-out wrong, factually.

      Having a Dem President and Senate since the 2020 election has yielded 1 Supreme Court Justice and 59 other federal judges. Forget about nationally, the sheer act of voting Dem in Georgia alone and getting to 50-50 in the Senate plus the VP kept Mitch McConnell from stalling or ignoring Biden's nominations. Manchin and Synema won't vote to expand SCOTUS, but they did vote for Biden's judge and justice nominees.

      Keep the Senate majority for 2 more years and you never know if there might be another SCOTUS justice opportunity in there. Thomas won't live forever. Keep the Senate and the Presidency for 4 years after that and chances are great for other SCOTUS appointments. Alito's 72. Expand the Senate majority so Manchin and Synema don't matter as much, and there might be a chance of having the votes to expand SCOTUS. With the Senate and the Presidency, there would be lots of opportunities to appoint other federal judges. SCOTUS is not the only court.

      1. Dead on, Jung.

        I watched Denise’s video too. She is probably just a useful idiot, posting here to promote her videos But she still backs Trump and Bannon with every breath she takes.

        Denise Spencer

        Trump Influencer.

        1. Why are you and Jung feeding the troll? She/he/they is/are either a troll or a moron neither of which warrants any kind of response.

          1. I won't make a habit of it, but will occasionally write something to people I disagree with in hopes that it might have some influence on that person or others. That's my right as an American.

            1. Agreed. Not everyone will recognise Denise as a shill, since we always have new visitors. That’s why I keep

              Labeling her as a Trump Influencer.

      2. Yeah, I now think “Denise” is really an ornery old nihilistic rocker. Her music should be right up the Headbanger’s alley, but not mine.

        She’s still an idiot for telling Democrats to give up on voting in hopes that magically, 4 years from now, voters will vote out an increasingly entrenched autocracy. That’s not how any of this works.

  5. What has Denise said that makes you think she or he is a “rocker.” Thus, why would you think I’d like his or her music? And I’ll offer that you know little about my broad based musical tastes and likes.

    1. In one of her early frenzies, Denise posted a link to a rock video her group, the Sound Industry, did.

      As kwtree said, it was a nihilistic piece.

      I’m stickin’ to Springsteen and Wagner., Leavened with Vivaldi and Satchmo.

      1. I guess I didn't assign a "high enough priority" to Denise's b.s. diatribes.

        I'll stick with the late Johnny Clegg and Kala Marka, among many others.

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