The studied ignorance of Wendy Davis
Texas state senator Wendy Davis became famous for filibustering an abortion bill while wearing pink sneakers, with a good deal of help from an unruly mob. The bill eventually passed anyway, but Davis became a pro-choice icon.
The Weekly Standard caught up with Davis and asked her the sort of question a fawning liberal press corps would never dream of asking. As always when cossetted liberal icons finally get a tough question, hilarity ensued:
THE WEEKLY STANDARD: The supporters of these bans, they argue that there really isn’t much of a difference between what happened in that Philadelphia case with abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell [killing born-alive infants] 23 weeks into pregnancy and legal late-term abortions at 23 weeks. What is the difference between those two, between legal abortion at 23 weeks and what Gosnell did? Do you see a distinction between those two [acts]?
SEN. WENDY DAVIS: I don’t know what happened in the Gosnell case. But I do know that it happened in an ambulatory surgical center. And in Texas changing our clinics to that standard obviously isn’t going to make a difference. The state of the law obviously has to assure that doctors are providing safe procedures for women and that proper oversight by the health and human services department is being given. It sounds as though there was a huge gap in that oversight, and no one can defend that. But that’s not the landscape of what’s happening in Texas.
Someone whose entire political career is bound up in abortion politics claims she has no idea what happened in the Gosnell case? I guess we can safely assume she doesn’t know about the Planned Parenthood of Delaware nurses and supervisor who have been blowing the whistle about “meat-market-style, assembly-line abortions” at their clinic, either. I’m still waiting for pro-choice liberal fans of the paperwork-belching super-State to explain why abortion is the one industry in America that shouldn’t be micro-regulated, and Planned Parenthood is the one deep-pocketed, politically connected mega-corporation that should never be viewed with the slightest bit of suspicion.
That’s typical of the lazy, dictatorial nature of “pro-choice” activists. They don’t think it’s necessary to know what they’re talking about, or consider a single word spoken by the other side of the debate. They have Absolute Moral Authority, a position that justifies any excess, and requires the processing of no inconvenient facts. They just know they’re right.
In a similar vein, Davis doesn’t actually know what the Supreme Court has said about abortion. She seems to think unrestricted abortion is some kind of inviolate Constitutional right. She couldn’t be less well-informed if she had just landed on the beaches of America after a 40-year sojourn on a deserted island.
This made it doubly amusing when the Standard pointed out to Davis that women massively support restrictions on abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy, which is one of the restrictions she crusaded against in Texas. Her response? “I again think that a lot of people don’t really understand the landscape of what’s happening in that arena today and what an incredibly small percentage of procedures take place there.”
Got that, women of America? A series of polls cited at the Washington Post show that women are even more supportive of restrictions on abortion after 20 weeks than men. It’s a 10-point gap in the Quinnipiac poll, with women 60 percent in favor of restrictions after 20 weeks.
But you don’t know what you’re talking about, ladies… unlike Wendy Davis, a professional politician and abortion warrior who claims to have no idea what happened in the Kermit Gosnell murder trial, or what the Planned Parenthood vs. Casey decision said. The studied ignorance of the pro-choice crowd is a telling contrast with the tendency to accuse everyone else – men and women alike – of having no clue about pregnancy, and therefore no right to discuss abortion.
Update: As if Wendy Davis didn’t already look like a complete fool, John Sexton of Breitbart News points out that the “one thing” she claimed to know about the Gosnell case is wrong.
Gosnell’s clinic was a de facto ambulatory surgical center under the definition set out in Pennsylvania law but it was not regulated as one. In fact, Gosnell’s clinic, like every other abortion clinic in Pennsylvania, was barely regulated at all.
The Gosnell grand jury report makes clear that the state Department of Health is responsible for the regulation of ambulatory surgical centers and that the state’s abortion clinics clearly fall under those regulations. However, the state abandoned its duty to regulate abortion clinics because, just like Wendy Davis, pro-choice Gov. Tom Ridge was concerned about creating barriers to abortion access.
As a result of the influence of pro-choice politics, DOH lawyers came up with a novel interpretation of the regulations which ignored abortion clinics, only requiring they submit a single sheet of paper with their name and address and a few other details to remain in the state’s good favor.
This was a major point of discussion during the Gosnell trial. You would think someone whose entire political career is dedicated to protecting abortion clinics from oversight would bone up on it. “The grand jury report notes that the DOH has three pages of regulations dealing with the use of sedation alone, but those regulations were not enforced at Gosnell’s clinic because of concerns about ‘access’ to abortion,” writes Sexton. That’s pink sneaker thinking.
In related news, the very same people who thought calling Sarah Palin “Caribou Barbie” was hilarious are now working themselves up into a towering frenzy of outrage over Erick Erickson referring to Wendy Davis as “Abortion Barbie.” But that’s par for the course among the totalitarian Left. Certain people are above criticism and mockery. Words change from amusing jest into despicable slander based entirely on who uses them, and who they are used against.