Thursday, May 28, 2009

NARAL Uneasy About Sotomayor

The mystery continues. Is the Democratic president's Supreme Court nominee pro choice? Or is the Democratic president's Supreme Court nominee pro life?

We should NOT have to ask this question!

The New York Times has a story about Sotomayor's mysterious position on abortion rights. NARAL is also worried and has belatedly joined the Center for Reproductive Rights in expressing this worry to members. Yeah, NARAL is the same organization that betrayed the woman who spent a lifetime working for women's reproductive rights because it was just so much more fun to endorse the cool dude. The same organization that was the very first (even before Ms.) to tell us that Obama is what a feminist looks like is now worried that Obama's pick for the High Court might not be pro choice.

NARAL deserves this. The women of America don't!

Not knowing Sotomayor's position on reproductive rights is a political advantage for Obama. But for women, there is nothing advantageous about not knowing. Apparently, the civil rights of women are at the bottom of Obama's list of priorities, down there next to the civil rights of gays. No one knows Sotomayor's position on gay rights either. (Meanwhile your favorite feminist cheerleading organization is not worried -- NOW 'cheers' Obama's choice)

New York Times -- [S]ome abortion rights advocates are quietly expressing unease that Judge Sotomayor may not be a reliable vote to uphold Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 abortion rights decision. In a letter, Nancy Keenan, president of Naral Pro-Choice America, urged supporters to press senators to demand that Judge Sotomayor reveal her views on privacy rights before any confirmation vote. “Discussion about Roe v. Wade will — and must — be part of this nomination process,” Ms. Keenan wrote. “As you know, choice hangs in the balance on the Supreme Court as the last two major choice-related cases were decided by a 5-to-4 margin.” .

. . [I]n his briefing to reporters on Tuesday, the White House spokesman, Robert Gibbs, was asked whether Mr. Obama had asked Judge Sotomayor about abortion or privacy rights. Mr. Gibbs replied that Mr. Obama “did not ask that specifically.”

As president, Mr. Obama has sought to avoid being drawn into the culture wars of the last several decades and has encouraged each side in the abortion debate to be respectful of the other’s opinions. But there are clear political advantages to his choice for the court not being perceived as having a strong position on abortion rights.

Judge Sotomayor’s views on abortion rights could still become clear if a past writing comes to light. During Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr.’s confirmation process in late 2005, for example, the National Archives released an old Justice Department job application in which he said the Constitution does not protect a right to an abortion.
But at this point, Judge Sotomayor’s views are as unknown as Justice Souter’s were in 1990, said Steven Waldman, the editor in chief of, a religious Web site, where he has blogged about her lack of an abortion rights record. . .

TGW: Is Sotomayor Even Pro Choice? Pro Gay Rights? Does Obama Even Know?