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Now They Tell You!

In America (Sept. 27, 2004), George Weigel said he “will vote enthusiastically for George W. Bush.” Earlier, as noted in a New Oxford Note on Weigel (Sept. 2004), we quoted him as saying that the 2004 presidential election will be a “nation-defining fork in the road” as regards abortion, homosexual “marriage,” biotechnology, foreign policy, and war.

Now that Bush has been safely re-elected, we hear a different tune from Weigel. In his post-election “Pro-Life Strategies” (eppc.org), he says: “Throughout the recent presidential campaign, pro-abortion advocates insisted that Roe v. Wade was ‘hanging by a thread.’ Would that it were so. But it isn’t.” And the prolife partisans of Bush were saying the same thing. If Weigel wasn’t saying precisely that, he was saying that the abortion issue would be a “nation-defining fork in the road,” which is pretty much the same.

Weigel tells us that the Supreme Court is divided six-to-three in favor of the constitutional right to abortion (as enshrined in Roe v. Wade and Casey v. Planned Parenthood). Weigel continues: “One of the three stalwarts is Chief Justice Rehnquist. Thus replacing Rehnquist with a Chief Justice who agrees that Roe and Casey were wrongly decided simply maintains the status quo. Two, preferably three, more anti-Roe/Casey votes beyond Rehnquist are necessary before reconsideration of those two decisions is possible. And there likely won’t be that many openings on the Court in this presidential term.”

Weigel goes on: “That doesn’t mean giving up on the Supremes; on the contrary, it means holding the Administration to its commitment to nominate justices who are willing to consider the possibility that Roe and Casey are…grave mistakes….” Consider the possibility? It doesn’t even need to be “considered,” and it’s a certainty, not a “possibility.” Kerry promised pro-aborts a litmus test on abortion, but Bush did not promise prolifers a litmus test on abortion, which leaves prolifers flapping in the wind.

So why did Weigel vote “enthusiastically” for Bush? He knew all of this all along. There’s no “nation-defining fork in the road” here.

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