As if the road to securing the U.S. Senate were not precarious enough for Republicans, Lindsey Graham recently blasted a crater into their path. His Washington-centric, 15-week limit on abortions swallowed whole the "Let the states decide!" sword that the GOP has wielded against the now-vacated Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision.
"When the Dobbs decision came down, the proponents of that decision said [they] just want to leave it to the states," Vice President Kamala Harris told Vice News on Friday, firing the howitzer shell that Graham gift-wrapped for her. "Within about 12 weeks now, they want a national ban , which means they are moving the goalposts, right? They are now saying there should be a national ban, a blanket ban in all states."
The South Carolina Republican senator's proposal is tight enough to enrage abortion lovers like Harris yet loose enough to demoralize pro-life purists such as conservative commentor Carrie Sheffield. She wrote for NBCNews.com: "Graham is copping out by pushing for a 15-week ban." (RELATED: SHEFFIELD: Despite Rising Consumer Confidence, Biden's Economy Still Can't Hold A Candle To Trump's)
Graham would allow abortions in cases involving rape or incest. Many pro-lifers oppose those exceptions, arguing that the baby's odious conception should not trigger its execution.
The sound you hear is Lindsey Graham slipping between the bar stools and smacking his sweet ass on the barroom floor.
Having embraced the Left's Washington-knows-best philosophy, Graham no longer can complain once Democrats try to vote Roe into the U.S. Code.
If Graham wants to force Democrats to vote against his bill and out themselves as abortion extremists, he picked a dreadful way to make this point unambiguous. Democrats turned his muddle into a cudgel with which to beat Republicans silly on the campaign trail.
"Very simple: If you want to protect the right to choose, and you want to protect a woman's right to health care, vote for more Democratic senators ," Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said on Tuesday. As his Graham-furnished mortar round terrorized GOP trenches, Schumer added: "You want to have a nationwide abortion ban? Vote for MAGA Republicans."
The last thing Republicans need is one of their own moonlighting as a Democrat field artillery officer. Instead, a senator brighter and tougher than Graham should introduce an amendment that makes the pro-abortion vs. pro-life contrast brutally stark. That provision should employ the federal purse strings, which remain in Congress' control, rather than prohibition language, per se, which the GOP/Right declared ad infinitum should be reserved to the states.
Having won that argument last June, via the Dobbs v. Jackson ruling, Republicans should leave abortion-access policy in state hands. Congressional decisions now should address federal funding. Which abortions Uncle Sam will or will not underwrite remains a legitimate question for Washington to answer.
This is the kind of post- Dobbs legislation that Republicans should endorse:
The In-Labor Baby Protection Act of 2022
No federal funds may be used to finance any abortion that is performed at or after the moment that the mother's amniotic sac is ruptured, commonly known as "when the water breaks."
This point in a pregnancy signals the imminent onset of labor.
Except when the mother's physical health is in danger, federal funding of any abortion performed from this time in a pregnancy forward shall be prohibited.
Rather than unite Democrats and divide Republicans, as Graham's bill did (just seven weeks before the mid-term elections), this approach would unite Republicans and divide Democrats, or at least make them cower in their foxholes.
A Senate vote on this measure would make Democrats decide if their love for abortion extends beyond when water breaks and labor begins. Democrat senators should show voters whether they would accept even this miniscule restriction, or if they really are unhinged zealots who never met an abortion they didn't love.
Democrats who support this provision would satisfy average voters, who would applaud this reasonable limit on abortion rights. However, those same senators would enrage their pro-choice base — just as early voting begins.
Democrats who oppose this legislation would keep Planned Parenthood purring. But they would horrify typical voters by confirming that Democrats are A-OK with aborting babies just as their mothers' contractions begin.
Those who should be tested on this matter include Arizona's Mark Kelly, Colorado's Michael Bennett, Georgia's Raphael Warnock, Nevada's Catherine Cortez Masto, New Hampshire's Maggie Hassan, and Washington's Patty Murray. Their Republican opponents – Blake Masters , Joe O'Dea , Herschel Walker , Adam Laxalt , Don Bolduc , and Tiffany Smiley – surely will make these Democrat votes world-famous.
Fiscal Year 2022 ends Friday. This week's corresponding budget wrangling offers ample opportunity to unveil The In-Labor Baby Protection Act.
Now, which Republican senator has the billiards to sponsor such an amendment and call for its immediate consideration?
Manhattan-based political commentor Deroy Murdock is a Fox News contributor.
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller News Foundation.
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