Don’t judge Obama on rotten fruit

Published 10:57 pm Tuesday, October 21, 2008

In a letter to the editor in The Natchez Democrat on Tuesday, Virginia O’Beirne, co-chair of Pro-Life of Natchez/Adams County, made a serious accusation.

She claimed that Barack Obama, then an Illinois state senator, supported infanticide by voting against the Born Alive Infant Protection Act earlier this decade.

Yes, we were told, Obama’s actions assured that “babies who survived attempted abortions could still be left to die.”

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“Barack the baby-killer.” Now there’s some bloody red meat sure to agitate the voters two weeks before election day.

Gee, if only it were true. But it’s not.

My source? How about Rick Winkel, the Republican author of the bill, otherwise known as SB-1082.

In a letter to the editor in the Chicago Tribune on Sept. 8, while still vigorously defending his bill, he acknowledged that, “None of those who voted against SB-1082 favored infanticide.”

So why did Sen. Obama vote against it? Because existing state law already required doctors in such circumstances “to preserve the life and health of the fetus.”

Besides Sen. Obama, the bill was also opposed by the Illinois State Medical Society because it “attempted to dictate the practice of medicine for neonatal care and greatly expanded civil liability for physicians.”

So, it actually wouldn’t have done anything new to protect the life of a newborn, but it would have interfered with a doctor’s practice of his craft.

So, Obama voted against it. Vile cur!

Of course, if anyone had bothered to listen, this was all covered in the last candidates’ debate on Oct. 15. For more information, and for hyperlinks to complete documentation for the Tribune letter, Illinois state statute on the issue, and the Medical Society’s critique, go to Check it out, if that is, you’re interested in facts rather than malicious falsehoods.

The pro-life position is a perfectly honorable one.

No one can doubt the moral sincerity of most who hold it.

And so, any who disagree with Sen. Obama’s pro-choice position and who consider abortion to be their defining issue, should vote against him, and can do so in good conscience.

However, this infanticide charge, which has also appeared in some of the McCain’s campaign’s infamous “robo calls,” has gone beyond the pale.

It is, to be blunt, dishonorable.

Unfortunately, some in the Right to Life Movement have chosen to embrace the Right to Lie.

In doing so, they bring discredit to the very cause they claim to champion.

Yes, you certainly “shall know them by their fruits.”

The McCain campaign is giving us a flotilla of banana boats full of deceit, innuendo, and unfounded smears.

Of course, running such a campaign is an admission that you can’t win on the issues. But when you and your party are bankrupt of ideas and saddled with the legacy of a failed incumbent, what else can you do?

James Wiggins

Natchez resident