• Connecticut, The Abortion State

    February 26, 2024
    Bob Duff, Public Domain.

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    It’s been decades since former President Bill Clinton said that abortion should be “safe, legal and rare”, a formulation launched by Clinton in 1992.

    According to a 2019 article in Vox, “The language was likely meant to appeal to people who supported the right to an abortion in principle but still felt morally conflicted about the procedure — a large group, according to some polling. But many abortion rights advocates argued that calling for the procedure to be ‘rare’ placed a stigma on people who seek it.”

    The use of the word “stigma” in such a context is bitterly ironic, and a profanation. The word “stigma’ is derived from the Latin word “stigmata,” the wounds of Christ on the cross transposed onto the human flesh of saints in the Christian Church such as Francis of Assisi.

    In Connecticut, abortion, both surgical and medical – within a certain period, women may abort their fetuses by taking a pill, widely available and at low cost – is hardly rare.

    Some non-religious agnostics in Connecticut are wondering why the so called abortion pill, an inexpensive abortifacient easily obtained, has not yet supplanted surgical abortions. The pill is safe to all but fetuses, as babies in the womb have come to be called, as the Planned Parenthood abortion industry tells us -- and hardly rare.

    Indeed, Connecticut, some politicians believe, would do well to advertise itself – perhaps by means of neon billboards dotting the state -- as “the abortion state,” a national draw, according to many pro-abortion members of the state’s neo-progressive General Assembly and its Governor, Ned Lamont, who bills himself as an economic conservative and a social progressive.

    An updated Connecticut statute favored by pro-abortionists permits those seeking abortions hailing from states that limit abortion rights to travel to Connecticut to receive surgical abortions.

    Decades ago, the U.S. Supreme Court, hoping to settle the abortion hash once and for all, passed Roe v Wade, which made abortion widely available and struck down inconvenient abortion laws in all states.

    Problem solved.

    As it happened, the problem was not solved. Anti-abortion fervor in the United States continued apace, driven, pro-abortionists reasoned, by a “religious opposition” that perversely insisted that abortion violated God’s law -- and science, which appeared to support the view that the fetus was not, merely “a part of a woman’s body,” somewhat like a diseased liver or an impacted wisdom tooth.

    The poorly reasoned Roe v. Wade — see progressive Supreme Court justices such as Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the point — finally was junked by a judicially enlightened Supreme Court a couple of years ago. The Roe v. Wade ruling had not lived up to its billing, and opposition to abortion had become fiercer.

    The Supreme Court repealed Roe v. Wade, but it did not repeal abortion.

    The high court, usually verbose on such matters, said, in so many words, abortion was a political matter that should be decided by state legislatures, and not morally and scientifically obtuse justices of the supreme or appellate courts: “It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives. The permissibility of abortion, and the limitations, upon it, are to be resolved like most important questions in our democracy: by citizens trying to persuade one another and then voting.”

    Problem solved.

    The states would be able, through statute, to affirm the “sanctity” of abortion – or not, as it pleased state legislatures and residents.

    Here in Connecticut, the state’s neo-progressive, Democrat-dominated General Assembly more or less incorporated Roe v. Wade into state statute way back in 1991. Given its ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson, the high court is not likely to reverse itself and declare that statutory abortion rights in Connecticut, affirmed by the state’s legislature, are in some sense unconstitutional – unless state legislators, dancing far out on a limb, propound a measure that is clearly unconstitutional, such as forbidding clerics from denouncing abortion citing religious proscriptions.

    “In 2022,” Hartford Courant reporter Chris Keating tells us, even before a draft of the Supreme Court’s ruling on abortion in the Dobbs case was leaked, the state legislature moved quickly to pass additional protections in the most far-reaching abortion bill in Connecticut in the past 32 years.

    “The bipartisan bill increased the number of medical specialists who are allowed to perform abortion services — allowing advanced practice registered nurses, physician assistants and nurse-midwives to provide medication and aspiration abortions in the first trimester.”

    Problem solved.

    Keating handles the issue gingerly in a recent story, “Advocates pushing CT constitutional amendment on abortion.”

    Leading the Democrat Party charge for a redundant state constitutional amendment in Connecticut affirming the right to abortion is “Senate majority leader Bob Duff, a Norwalk Democrat, [who] said he is concerned that former President Donald J. Trump nominated three conservative justices who have shifted the balance of power on the nation’s highest court.”

    To put Duff’s concern more pointedly, the senate majority leader fears that the high court, having shifted decision making on the matter of abortion from courts to state legislatures, will — because the court is top-heavy with conservatives, and may become more so if former President Donald Trump, avoiding a jail sentence, secures a second term as president — reverse its most recent decision and rule that justices rather than state legislatures should decide the nettlesome issue of abortion nation-wide in favor of unenlightened anti-abortion protestors whose secular passions have been stirred by religious prescriptions.

    These fears, according to Chris Healy, once the Republican Party Chairman in Connecticut, now executive director of the Connecticut Catholic Conference, are not grounded in reality. Healy is quoted in the Keating story to this effect: “As bad as abortion is, it’s clearly part of the law. This [the constitutional amendment proposed by Duff and passionately supported by Big Abortion] would lead to unbridled infanticide. There are no standards [in the draft amendment] for late-term abortions. It is pure politics. They want to use it as a political hammer.”

    The difficulty in passing a constitutional amendment in Connecticut may have convinced Healy that the real purpose of the amendment proposed by Duff is to advance the upcoming Democrat 2024 campaign. According to the state Office of Legislative Research, “a resolution proposing a constitutional amendment must be approved by a three-fourths majority of each chamber's membership to appear on the 2024 state election ballot,” a high hill to climb in the case of fractious abortion amendments.

    The beads of sweat dotting Duff’s forehead spring chiefly from campaign considerations.

    In politics, you cannot sell nothing for something, and it now appears that President Joe Biden may not be replaced at the Democrat Party Convention by a younger more mentally fit candidate.  Biden’s policies, foreign and domestic, have been laid on the media’s analytical table and found wanting, often by moderate or left of center metaphysicians. The precipitous withdrawal from Afghanistan was, most alert reporters might agree, a ham-fisted disaster. Measures advanced by Biden early in his administration affecting the U.S. southern border have busted the border, now wide open to an assortment of illegal immigrant from numerous nations. WOLA, which tracks “Migration, country by country, at the U.S.-Mexico border,” has produced a list. Biden has been advised by politically knowledgeable Democrats to shelve Bidenomics until the price of eggs, gas and energy return to more manageable pre-Biden levels.

    National Republicans are preparing a campaign that underscores such issues. Democrats have abortion, an issue that will not be settled – because it has not been settled since 1973 when Roe v. Wade toppled abortion laws nationwide.

    Healy in his brief remark on the dangers of Duff’s constitutional amendment is being much too kind – too Christian, one might say. The proposed constitutional amendment, wholly redundant, would replace a statute – repeal proof, according to the reasoning of the Supreme Court’s Dobbs v. Jackson decision that replicates Roe v. Wade. This effort is a shameless attempt, by campaign hungry politicians, to violate with impunity the consciences of people in Connecticut, religious or otherwise, including reporters, who should be able to recognize a discreditable campaign foil when they see it. And Duff should not be so anxious to bruise the religiously informed consciences of those of his constituents who have not yet swallowed the whale of secular pro-abortion propaganda.

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    Don Pesci

    Don Pesci is a political columnist of long standing, about 40 years, who has written for various state newspapers, among them The Journal Inquirer, the Waterbury Republican American, the New London Day, the Litchfield County Times, the Torrington Register Citizen and other Register Citizen papers. He maintains a blog, among the oldest of its kind in Connecticut, which serves as a repository and archive, for his columns; there are approximately 3,000 entrees in Connecticut Commentary: Red Notes From A Blue State, virtually all of them political columns stretching back to 2004. He also appears once a week Wednesdays on 1080 WTIC Newstalk radio with Will Marotti.

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    Paul A

    They are fooling themselves. We all will be judged and have to answer for everything we do by our only judge that matters. The hope we still have is redemption and as long as you are existing there is still time to heal. You have been given the greatest opportunity as a starting point. We must keep the faith and take advantage of the sacrifice made that forgives us all. This the season of Easter. It’s that belief that’s extends the gift of hope. Happy Easter.

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