The Audacity of the Party Line

Regarding the possibility of Obama taking a page from Democrats for Life, a reader who follows these issues closely writes:

Obama has never expressed any support for the "Pregnant Women Support Act" (i.e., the 95-10 bill introduced in Congress in 2007; it has languished ever since - neither Pelosi, nor Reid (nor any committee chair) have brought it forward for a hearing, etc.). In fact, Obama recently voted against one of its key provisions, namely, (re)inclusion of coverage for unborn children under SCHIP (the Allard Amendment). More damningly, he is a co-sponsor of the radically pro-abortion "Freedom of Choice Act." Indeed, he told a gathering at a Planned Parenthood event that "his first act" as President would be to sign it.

None of this is terribly surprising, given the landscape of today's Democratic Party - Hillary Clinton is likewise a FOCA sponsor, needless to say - but it's a useful reminder of the limits of what Steve Sailer likes to call Obama's "I have understood you" appeal to people with whom he disagrees. It's an approach to politics that's sustainable only up till the moment when platitudes have to give way to actual policymaking, and as such it has the capacity to breed even greater disillusionment with government (by raising expectations and then dashing them) than the up-front partisanship it seeks to vanquish.

The other day, a friend remarked: "Obama is making me more cynical about politics," and I think before all this is over an awful lot of people are going to agree with him. I suspect that number will include anti-war liberals and libertarian Obamaphiles like Andrew; I'm almost positive that it will include those anti-war, pro-life Catholics who have concluded that the Illinois Senator is a more conservative choice than John McCain.