Want to alienate pro-life voters? Attack a candidate for being “too extreme” in his views on abortion.

The New York Times reports that the Super PAC supporting Governor Jeb Bush is thinking about running ads criticizing Senator Marco Rubio for his views on abortion:

In an attempt to blunt Mr. Rubio’s appeal and showcase a potential vulnerability against the Democratic nominee in the general election, Mr. Murphy recently showed some Republicans a video portraying Mr. Rubio as too extreme on abortion. A longtime opponent of abortion rights, Mr. Rubio said in a debate in August that he had “never advocated” laws that would allow abortions, even in cases of rape or incest.

In other words, the Bush Super PAC is considering running ads criticizing Rubio for not supporting legal abortions in cases of rape and incest.

I’m sitting in the cheap seats, and nobody’s is paying me for my political advice. So take this for what it is worth. But I can think of no quicker way to alienate pro-life voters than to attack Rubio for being consistently pro-life. If this report is accurate and the Super PAC goes through with this ad, it will galvanize pro-life supporters in defense of Rubio. And even though the Super PAC isn’t connected to the Bush campaign, it will likely turn pro-life primary voters against Bush.

I am not endorsing or non-endorsing either candidate. But I am a pro-life voter, and I don’t think this kind of internecine conflict serves the cause of life. I hope cooler heads prevail. Any scorched-earth approach that ends up damaging the pro-life cause must be vigorously opposed.

UPDATE 11/12/15: There is some good news in this report from Ashley Parker at The New York Times. Bush has gone on the record in opposition to what his Super PAC was considering.

Mr. Bush declined to personally criticize Mr. Rubio’s hard-line stance on abortion.

“Look, I don’t think anybody should be critical of someone who’s pro-life, because I’m the most pro-life candidate on that stage,” he said, listing his various initiatives in Florida, from regulating abortion clinics and offering “Choose Life” license plates to expanding support for adoptions and funding crisis pregnancy centers. “By doing, not talking. This is the difference, again.”

Asked if he would disavow his “super PAC” should it run the abortion ad against Mr. Rubio, he said, “I don’t think anybody should attack someone who’s pro-life.”

(HT: John McCormack)


  • Terry Galloway

    Terry Galloway
    I used to be pro choice but when I was born again at age 45 I immediately became pro life. Then I heard Kelly Wright’s testimony on Fox news of being the result of a rape and now I agree with Rubio. I totally agree that this would be a very bad move.

  • Christiane Smith

    It is so very important to honor the moral law according to our consciences, yes; but we cannot do this while neglecting to show to others the love of God . . . it is in that area that many have taken a firm line in their own minds about the issue of ‘the right to life’ but have turned their backs on the plight of those affected by the exercise of that firmness . . .

    in the ‘right to life’ movement, there has been way more judging than serving . . . our Christian faith calls us to serve those in distress with the same deep compassion shown to troubled people by Our Lord Himself when He was among us, nothing less will honor Him

  • Ian Shaw

    This is the problem with republicans (and democrats alike). They don’t prepare a good enough game plan on what they want to accomplish and why, so they decide the best way to “win” a debate or gain the public’s vote is to intellectually and personally attack someone.

    This is a problem conservatives. Baby boomers might not see what you’re doing, but X’ers and millenials see your distraction technique. This is why we don’t have faith in you when we want to. You spent the last 2+ years trying to get rid of the ACA, saying how horrible it is (no disagreement from me), but you didn’t propose much of a solution to that or any other idea on any other issue.

    Figure out what you want to do for this country. In great detail….and then tell us how, and show us. Instead we see a room full men and women who would rather badmouth each other and the other party, rather than propose solutions to the problems they decry.

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