Sean Erenstoft issues his comments on the latest G.O.P. posture about punishing women for exercising their rights about family planning.
Just this week, Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan said he hopes Republican voters trust Trump instead of himself to lead the party. Responding to a question asking if he thinks Trump is the new leader of the GOP, Ryan responded, “Good Lord, I hope it is, because the person who is getting the nomination is the person to lead our party.”
However, Trump is on his fourth iteration on his view about abortion from having claimed the matter to be settled law, to dedicated to selecting Supreme Court justices that will overrule the landmark decision of Roe v. Wade.
Indeed, in March, 2016 he told MSNBC's Chris Matthews that there "has to be some form of punishment for women who have abortions." And just this week, he contradicted that remark by stating, "I didn't mean punishment for women like prison. I'm saying women punish themselves." And to make matters worse, Trump's own campaign released its own statements stating that "the woman is the victim" and that abortion providers should be held legally responsible if abortions were banned.
Trump has articulated so many contradictory positions about this hegemonic issue that it's impossible to know what he would do in government. Many see his moves as an attempt to garner a broader swath of pro-choice voters while maintaining support from the anti-abortion establishment and the religious right. Similarly, Trump voiced ambiguity when he proclaimed that Planned Parenthood "does very good work," but should still be defunded if it continues to provide abortion. Indeed, his position in this regard ignores the fact that Planned Parenthood does not (and cannot) use the funds it receives from the government to sponsor abortions. Thus, Trump is essentially for defunding mammograms and family planning.
It seems that our modern G.O.P. will have to address their stated posture that women should be punished for their health decisions and denied government funded health support while their nominee decides how to overturn 50 years of established law in the area of a woman's right to choose.
Sean Erenstoft is a civil rights lawyer living in Los Angeles who operates a mediation/arbitration firm and volunteers to assist military veterans obtain their much-deserved benefits. He also founded a blog at www.superiorcourtblog.com
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