The Christian Defense Coalition has announced a new campaign to “educate” American voters about what the group calls Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama’s “radical and extremist abortion positions.”
The group claims that Obama wants to use the tax dollars of people of faith to pay for abortions. Rev. Patrick J. Mahoney, Director of the Christian Defense Coalition, said, “Senator Obama talks about bringing hope, faith and change to American politics. We now see this is all just political ‘doublespeak.’ One of his top priorities as President would be protecting abortion rights and even expanding them. If elected, Senator Obama would become ‘The Abortion President,’ with the most extremist policies on abortion of any President in history.”
Mahoney also claimed that Obama would expand abortion rights, “Senator Obama’s views on abortion are so radical that he even wants American citizens to pay for them. This would include Catholics, Evangelicals and all people of faith. He would also expand abortion rights through his passionate support of The Freedom of Choice Act.”
There is only one small problem with the group’s claims. They aren’t true. Here is what Obama’s position is on abortion, “Obama has been a consistent champion of reproductive choice and will make preserving a women’s right to choose under Roe v. Wade a priority as president. Obama also supports expanded access to contraception, health information and preventive services to reduce unintended pregnancies. Obama will make safeguarding women’s rights under Roe v. Wade a priority. He opposes any constitutional amendment to overturn that decision. Obama will work to reduce unintended pregnancy by guaranteeing equity in contraceptive coverage, providing sex education, and offering rape victims accurate information about emergency contraception.”
So yes, Obama is pro-choice. However, he has never made statements that advocate either expanding abortion rights, or public funding for abortions. This smear campaign is a desperate attempt by a far right group to motivate their base and revitalize their political power in a year when it seems to be slipping away.
Obama has gotten the support of up to one third of pro-life voters in states like Virginia, Colorado, and New Mexico. Even though John McCain is anti-abortion many voters have been slow to warm up to him. This is the kind of attack that Obama should expect to see much more of. Whether the charges are true or not many on the far right will say anything to defeat him in November.