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Lack of Leadership in the Protection of Life

Michaeljon Murphy, Vice Chairman

By: Michaeljon Murphy
Vice Chairman
Constitution Party of Wisconsin



In post-Roe America, the Republicans are not doing the preborn any favors. The Democrats and liberals seem to have higher standards and are not willing to abide any restrictions on abortion. In Wisconsin the Republicans appear to have retreated into the nearest foxhole and are wetting their fingers to see which way the wind is blowing. With the fiery rhetoric from the left and the fizzling red wave in the midterm elections, the Republicans are now offering to add additional exceptions to the 1849 Wisconsin abortion statute which has effectively grounded the murder of preborn children in our state. Polls seem to indicate that a majority support exceptions for at least rape and incest situations, and the Republicans are eager to appear less fanatical. The liberal fanatics however are not in the least placated and cry for things to go back at least to the way they were before Roe was tossed into the dustbin.

Republican Push for Exceptions

Unborn baby in the womb

suparna sinha, CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons

A group of Republican legislators, championed by Speaker Robin Vos, have introduced a bill to add rape and incest exceptions for the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. The bill also seeks to “clarify” the language for the current “life of the mother” exception in the 1849 law. A Fox News story reported that “Vos said he asked Evers in December to be open to compromise on abortion to address concerns of doctors about what they can do under the current law to protect the health of a mother.”[1] These “concerns” from physicians may indeed be disingenuous. When speaking to, Julaine Appling of Wisconsin Family Council explained why such “clarifying” language is not needed:

“The language describing the need for an abortion to save the life of the mother is totally unnecessary,” said Julaine Appling, President of Wisconsin Family Action. “The bill mentions three specific circumstances, all three of which are either not pregnancies at all or are already recognized as medically necessary to save the life of the mother. An embryonic pregnancy and molar pregnancy are circumstances where there is no embryo or fetus; so obviously, it cannot be an abortion. Ectopic pregnancy is a life-threatening condition that requires emergency treatment. In all three of these cases, there is no current law that would prohibit a physician from providing the necessary medical care.”[2]

Governor Tony Evers (bless his heart) has vowed to veto the legislation. He will accept nothing short of a full repeal of the 1849 law. He pledges to do the right thing for all the wrong reasons. Why are conservatives not equally committed to do the right thing for the right reasons? Why won’t they settle for nothing less than full protection for the unborn? Matt Sande (Pro-Life Wisconsin Legislative Director) said, “It’s incredibly disappointing and disheartening. We have an abortion ban in place. Again, we would like to strengthen it, make it more clear.”

A Referendum on Abortion?

Senator Ron Johnson has called for a referendum on abortion. He wants to let the people decide. Johnson was already distancing himself from taking a firm position on abortion leading up to the fall 2022 election. He appeared to be trying to “lie low” on the subject and hope that liberal voters would not check his voting record. A Wisconsin Public Radio article made sure to highlight the history for their readers who may have forgotten that he was once a “radical”:

Johnson’s call is also at odds with his position throughout his time as a U.S. senator. In 2011, less than a month after he took office, he cosponsored the Life at Conception Act, which would have extended constitutional protection to embryos. He cosponsored similar bills in every session he’s been in Congress, and in May [2022] said he supported a national abortion ban after 20 weeks.[3]

He first floated the idea of a referendum in September of 2022. However, Wisconsin state law does not permit binding legal referendums. To Johnson’s chagrin (calling it “rushed” and “divisive”), Tony Evers quickly took the bait and scheduled a special session to seek to change the law on referendums. The Republican legislators immediately ended the session without conducting any business.

Democracy Over a Republican Form of Government?

I find this strategy from Johnson rather mystifying. If abortion seemed to be too hot a topic for Johnson to comment on strongly in his campaign, why now attempt to turn it over to a vote that is likely to be stampeded by a salivating liberal mob? When last I checked, Johnson was a United States senator, not a Wisconsin state senator. Why is he trying to take up a Wisconsin legislative initiative? His purview is to look out for Wisconsin interests through national law and policy, not state policy. He is also an elected representative, entrusted with protecting our republican form of government. After the deliberations of the Continental Congress, Benjamin Franklin famously pronounced our new form of government “a republic, if we can keep it.”

A majority vote on a referendum would be an exercise in pure democracy. Why does Johnson now prefer democracy over a republican form of government? Our founding fathers considered a democracy nothing more than mob rule. He would better serve Wisconsin by seeking strong federal protection for the unborn. He is shirking his responsibility and passing the buck to the people. This is not what the founders fought for.

The Constitution Party supports the abolition of abortion with no exceptions. Wisconsin politicians should be removing the life of the mother exception, not adding more exceptions. At a time of political turmoil, it is not time for our leaders to hide from their principles, but to rally people who are faithful to those principles and educate and persuade those who are unsure. It is not time to turn things over to a mob.

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2 – Wisconsin Family Action: Responds to “abortion exceptions bill” – WisPolitics
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