Trends within politics rarely occur in a vacuum. Instead, they develop within a broader ideological and historical context, which accounts for individual elected officials’ political motivations to this very day. Planned Parenthood, for instance, has always enjoyed the support of a notable component of the Republican Party, especially its moderate or Rockefeller wing, comprised of influential Establishment elitists, internationalists, and environmentalists.The author spends some time talking about Barry Goldwater's support for abortion and his wife's involvement with Planned Parenthood, before continuing with present-day Republicans:
The seven Republicans who voted in favor of retaining federal funding for Planned Parenthood, in addition to Senators Lisa Murkowski, Susan Collins, and Olympia Snowe, all hail from this tradition. Beyond their obvious support for pro-choice causes, these individuals are also characterized by a commitment to centrist policies and fiscal largesse — all indicative of their opposition to the principles of traditional, constitutional government.
Ever since its earliest days, Planned Parenthood has counted among its supporters prominent members of the Republican Party. As early as 1942, Connecticut Senator Prescott Bush (picture, above)[picture at link: E.M.], grandfather of President George W. Bush, was a supporter of Margaret Sanger’s American Birth Control League, and in 1947, served as the treasurer for the first national campaign for Planned Parenthood. The political repercussions hit hard. Prescott Bush was knocked out of an expected victory for a Senate seat in Connecticut in 1950 after syndicated columnist Drew Pearson declared that it "has been made known" that Bush was a leader in the "Birth Control Society" (the original name of Planned Parenthood was the Birth Control Federation of America). Prescott Bush won a Senate seat two years later, and his son George and daughter-in-law Barbara continued to support Planned Parenthood even after George's election to Congress from Texas. In fact, he was such an advocate for family planning that some House colleagues nicknamed him "Rubbers."
In addition, Prescott’s son George H.W. also supported family planning efforts while serving as a Texas congressman. President George H.W. Bush was best known for his opposition to Ronald Reagan’s supply-side economics, rooted in the free-market ideas of Hayek and Friedman, deriding the conservative Reagan as a proponent of “voodoo economics.” He wrote a constituent in 1970: “I introduced legislation earlier this year which would provide federal funds for research in family planning devices and increased services to people who need them but cannot afford them. We must help our young people become aware of the fact that families can be planned and that there are benefits economically and socially to be derived from small families.” ("George Bush to Mrs. Jim Hunter, Jr., Oct. 23, 1970" [Virginia B. Whitehill Papers, DeGolyer Library, Southern Methodist University].)
Romney has flip-flopped egregiously on the question of abortion. In 2002, he announced that he supported a “woman’s right to choose,” and in 1994, said he supported Roe v. Wade. Later that year, according to the Boston Herald, he "came down more firmly in the abortion rights camp,” declaring his support for the "morning after" pill and a federal bill protecting visitors to health clinics from anti-abortion violence. In a debate later that year against Ted Kennedy, Romney said that he had supported abortion rights consistently since 1970 when his mother Lenore ran as a pro-abortion rights candidate for the U.S. Senate in Michigan. He linked his support for abortion rights to the death "many years ago" of a "dear, close family relative" following a botched illegal abortion. "You will not see me wavering on that," he added.Read the whole article here.
Later in 2002, Romney claimed he would "preserve and protect" abortion rights in Massachusetts, and told activists from NARAL Pro Choice America that “you need someone like me in Washington," according to notes taken by a member of NARAL. NARAL officials interpreted this as a reference to his national political ambitions. In addition, he answered "yes" in a questionnaire from Planned Parenthood in 2002 on whether he would support "efforts to increase access to emergency contraception."
There's a reason why some Catholics are starting to realize that neither party is really all that committed to protecting and preserving human life from conception until natural death. True, there are pro-life Republicans who are also opposed to IVF, ESCR, and similar evils--but almost nobody opposes governmental funding and distribution of contraception. It is taken for granted that it is an unqualified good to keep certain segments of the population from reproducing, even if they have to have free pills, shots, or condoms to decrease their reproduction to socially acceptable levels.
We may, at times, form alliances with Republicans to achieve some of our pro-life goals--and that's fine. That's politics. But we're being stunningly naive if we believe that the vast majority of Republicans share our committment to the protection of unborn human life, or will work with us on issues like ESCR--or even to end the funding of Planned Parenthood. Plenty of Republicans think birth control is morally good, and that it's especially good when being used to keep the American underclasses from becoming too numerous.