Op-Ed: Did Lindsey Graham Just Draw a Line in the Sand on Abortion?


Is Sen. Lindsey Graham giving Americans what they want or is he trying to rescue faltering Republican midterm campaigns?

On Sept. 13, Graham introduced a federal bill restricting abortion to under 15 weeks because after that time babies feel the pain of abortion.

Graham’s bill comes as many of his pro-life counterparts running in the midterms are backing away from the abortion debate. Meanwhile, pro-abortion candidates are doubling down on abortion, finding it to be a winning strategy. In fact, pro-abortion groups consider the 2022 midterms the most important in a lifetime, with the power to have abortion either enshrined as a right or permanently embargoed legislatively.

So while pro-abortion candidates believe they can win talking about abortion like Pat Ryan did, flipping New York’s 19th Congressional District, it only works as long as they don’t reveal how rabidly pro-abortion they really are — supporting unfettered abortion access through all nine months of pregnancy.

This is the Democratic Party’s true abortion position, and it is wildly unpopular with the electorate. But they think hiding in plain sight with feigned moral outrage at the loss of some fabricated right will throw everyone off. We’ll find out in November if conservative candidates don’t start humming the pro-life tune.

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According to a January Marist poll, 71 percent of Americans favor some restrictions on abortion. Another survey found that 75 percent of people 18 to 34, now representing one-third of all voters, want some form of restrictions. Interestingly, 80 percent of them think the states, not the federal government, should dictate their own restrictions.

Did Graham do the right thing by introducing his federal bill restricting abortion? According to the recent surveys, the answer is yes and no. Yes, insofar as Americans reject radical, unfettered, unaccountable abortion access. But no, as the bill does not bring the debate closer to home rule.

So why did Graham do it?

It may be that Graham understands the political suicide pro-life candidates are committing by pulling out of a critical discussion the public so desperately wants to have. The bill plants a flag in the ground to which pro-life voters can rally whose candidate for office is merely affiliated with the pro-life movement while now unwilling to speak about it. The spineless pro-lifers will have Graham to thank if they happen to get elected by a slim margin.

Do you support Graham's bill?

Pro-abortion politicians seem to understand that debates on moral issues trump gas prices. But pro-life politicians seem to think that softening their image by talking about money will save their campaign.

Beliefs drive passion. And passion directs votes. Another way of saying it is that money follows morality. In fact, a checkbook is a moral tool. People fund the causes they believe in. One might say an economy, then, is a moral thermometer and a budget a moral document, reflecting the beliefs of those who create them.

Furthermore, economies do not exist apart from people. And to date, no one — not Marx, not Malthus, not even Joe Biden — has been able to create a sustainable economic model based on a flat or declining population base.

Politicians who promote the destruction of the population through abortion and those who refuse to protect the next generation of citizens are brothers in the family of economic destruction. The Democratic pro-abortion brother is foolhardy while the Republican pro-life brother is a coward. Neither one has any business running for office.

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Rev. Jim Harden is a medical ethicist, author of the newly published "Ethical Theory and Pertinent Standards in Women’s Reproductive Health," and CEO of CompassCare Pregnancy Services. He pioneered the first measurable and repeatable medical model in the pregnancy center movement. Harden has written extensively on medical ethics and pro-life policy and developed materials and strategies used by hundreds of pregnancy centers nationwide.