On Monday, Justice Kavanaugh joined with Roberts and the (other) liberals on the bench to protect Planned Parenthood funding. Over the objections of Thomas, Alito, and Gorsuch, it was decided that the Supreme Court would not hear a case on whether states can defund the baby-killing conglomerate. Two lower court opinions, which require states to continue funding the abortion business, were left in place.
It’s safe to say that the chances of overturning Roe v. Wade just took a steep dive, not that the chances were ever very good to begin with. If Kavanaugh won’t hear a case about Planned Parenthood funding, it seems doubtful that he would want to hear a case challenging abortion rights. It is still too early to say for sure, but Republicans may have replaced Kennedy with another Kennedy, which would rank as one of the great missed opportunities in modern political history.
Republicans are quite adept at missing opportunities, especially when it comes to the abortion issue. After all, they just completed their two-year stint with full control over both chambers of Congress and the White House and they never did manage to defund Planned Parenthood. I say “didn’t manage” but “never once even seriously tried” would be the better description. They had all the power and zero excuses, yet they still could not complete the simple and morally necessary act of severing a pipeline that pumps hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars into an institution that kills 330,000 humans a year. Republicans also failed to get the wall started, or repeal Obamacare, or balance the budget. Hey, at least they gave us those minor tax cuts.
But some good might come of this incredible failure. Hopefully it will be a moment of awakening for those confused conservatives who were still operating under the assumption that the GOP is a “pro-life party.” It is no such thing. A pro-life party wouldn’t need any encouragement to defund the abortion industry. It would get the job done on the first day and then it would move on to passing legislation that offers more direct protections to the unborn. The Republican Party, despite all the power it was given, did neither of those things.
Why? Well, it’s always the same ingredients with Republicans: cowardice and dishonesty. They are cowards because they fear the tidal wave of impotent outrage that would come their way if they ever actually did anything pro-life. They are dishonest because, contrary to the unconvincing talking points they spew, they don’t really want abortion banned or funding cut off. If they ever solved the problem, they wouldn’t be able to use the problem in their campaign speeches. I do not know how most of them personally feel about abortion itself, but it’s quite clear that they love the issue of abortion. They know that no matter how often they betray us, we will keep coming back, keep giving them our support, always with the desperate and pitiful hope that they will actually do something for a change.
I think it is time to abandon that hope.