Go to HHH home page.
Smart Politics
 


Smart Politics Live Blog At Abortion Policy Event

Bookmark and Share

7:00 p.m. Sarah Stoesz, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota is the featured speaker at tonight's event. The launching pad for tonight's discussion of abortion policy is South Dakota's 2006 restrictions on abortion, passed by the GOP-dominated state legislature and supported by Republican Governor Mike Rounds. The referendum was defeated last November at the ballot box, 56 to 44 percent, largely because the law did not allow for exceptions for health of the mother, incest, and rape.

7:10 p.m. Stoesz's speech will use the abortion policy debate in South Dakota as a means to more broadly discuss the increased polarization in the political arena. Stoesz characterizes the majority of South Dakotan's as against abortion, although SurveyUSA poll's conducted in 2006 contradict her view: those identifying themselves as pro-choice outnumbered those identifying themselves as pro-life in 9 of 11 polls, with ties in the two other polls.

7:20 p.m. Planned Parenthood is the sole provider of abortions in the state of South Dakota, and, according to Stoesz, the organization has to fly doctors into the state to perform the procedures. Stoesz argues that the proponents of the abortion ban did not foresee the 'shockwaves' this ban would send throughout the state and the country. South Dakota was the first state (1898) to adopt the initiative/referendum process. Planned Parenthood opted to pursue the referendum process rather than the courts to fight their battle.

7:30 p.m. Stoesz states that the ethic underpinning their campaign was 'healthy families,' and not converting people to their view, but, instead, having a 'conversation' about the subject of abortion. Stoesz says the campaign was based on the premise that the ban went too far - and it did, to be sure, for the South Dakota electorate. Had the ban provided for exceptions for rape and incest, support for the law would have been much stronger. A July 2006 KELO-TV/Argus Leader poll found more than 2:1 of South Dakotans supporting such a ban (59 percent to 29 percent).

7:40 p.m. Stoesz does not speak as to whether or not they would have launched a campaign against the ban if it had provided for these exceptions, and, if so, what Planned Parenthood's strategy would have been. Despite the lack of physicians and clinics in the state performing abortion procedures on women, 55 percent of South Dakotans state they know a woman who has had an abortion, according to a February 2006 Rasmussen Poll. That's a higher number than in Iowa (51 percent) and nearly as many as in Wisconsin (58 percent).

7:45 p.m. The event now turns to a panel discussion with Stoesz, former Minnesota House Speaker (and current Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry) Steve Sviggum, and Star Tribune Capitol journalist Lori Sturdevant. Sviggum announces he is a pro-life individual, but characterizes the actions of the South Dakota legislature as "extreme." Sviggum states that Planned Parenthood's strategy to label the ban "family unfriendly" was a "wonderful politcal strategy."

8:00 p.m. Stoesz states she is concerned about recent reproductive rights rulings in the federal court system and the current Supreme Court make-up that if abortion issues are brought before the courts they may not rule in her favor (e.g. the recent 5-4 ban on partial birth abortion was upheld by the Supreme Court).

8:10 p.m. Stoesz cites a World Health Organization study that abortion rates are the same regardless of whether or not abortion is legal. She implies that if Roe vs. Wade had been decided in favor of the minority Court opinion (leaving the right to an abortion up to the states), there would still be as many abortions as there are currently today.

8:20 p.m. Several times during Stoesz's speech she equated, not persuasively from a logical point of view, people being conflicted about abortion with the people therefore not wanting states to take action and outlaw abortion.

Previous post: Smart Politics Live Blogging At Abortion Policy Event
Next post: Clinton Rolls Over GOP in MN ; McCain Toughest Competitor

Leave a comment


Remains of the Data

Is There a Presidential Drag On Gubernatorial Elections?

Only five of the 20 presidents to serve since 1900 have seen their party win a majority of gubernatorial elections during their administrations, and only one since JFK.

Political Crumbs

Strike Three for Miller-Meeks

Iowa Republicans had a banner day on November 4th, picking up both a U.S. Senate seat and one U.S. House seat, but Mariannette Miller-Meeks' defeat in her third attempt to oust Democrat Dave Loebsack in the 2nd CD means the GOP will not have a monopoly on the state's congressional delegation in the 114th Congress. The loss by Miller-Meeks (following up her defeats in 2008 and 2010) means major party nominees who lost their first two Iowa U.S. House races are now 0 for 10 the third time around in Iowa history. Miller-Meeks joins Democrat William Leffingwell (1858, 1868, 1870), Democrat Anthony Van Wagenen (1894, 1912 (special), 1912), Democrat James Murtagh (1906, 1914, 1916), Democrat Clair Williams (1944, 1946, 1952), Democrat Steven Carter (1948, 1950, 1956), Republican Don Mahon (1966, 1968, 1970), Republican Tom Riley (1968, 1974, 1976), Democrat Eric Tabor (1986, 1988, 1990), and Democrat Bill Gluba (1982, 1988, 2004) on the Hawkeye State's Three Strikes list.


Larry Pressler Wins the Silver

Larry Pressler may have fallen short in his long-shot, underfunded, and understaffed bid to return to the nation's upper legislative chamber, but he did end up notching the best showing for a non-major party South Dakota U.S. Senate candidate in more than 90 years. Pressler won 17.1 percent of the vote which is the best showing for an independent or third party U.S. Senate candidate in the state since 1920 when non-partisan candidate Tom Ayres won 24.1 percent in a race won by Republican Peter Norbeck. Overall, Pressler's 17.1 percent is good for the second best mark for a non-major party candidate across the 35 U.S. Senate contests in South Dakota history. Independent and third party candidates have appeared on the South Dakota U.S. Senate ballot just 25 times over the last century and only three have reached double digits: Pressler in 2014 and Ayres in 1920 and 1924 (12.1 percent). Pressler's defeat means he won't become the oldest candidate elected to the chamber in South Dakota history nor notch the record for the longest gap in service in the direct election era.


more POLITICAL CRUMBS

Humphrey School Sites
CSPG
Humphrey New Media Hub

Issues />

<div id=
Abortion
Afghanistan
Budget and taxes
Campaign finances
Crime and punishment
Economy and jobs
Education
Energy
Environment
Foreign affairs
Gender
Health
Housing
Ideology
Immigration
Iraq
Media
Military
Partisanship
Race and ethnicity
Reapportionment
Redistricting
Religion
Sexuality
Sports
Terrorism
Third parties
Transportation
Voting