After the candidates' Rick Warren interviews Saturday night, Barack Obama gave an exclusive one-on-one to Christian Broadcasting Network's David Brody, calling National Right to Life "lying" and "ridiculous" for claiming he opposed an Illinois bill to protect babies who survived abortion even when the bill explicitly protected Roe vs. Wade.
Today, the New York Sun reports the Obama campaign admits NRLC is telling the truth.
Here is what Obama told Brody on Saturday:
Obama: ... They [at NRLC] have not been telling the truth. And I hate to say that people are lying, but here's a situation where folks are lying. I have said repeatedly that I would have been completely in, fully in support of the federal bill that everybody supported - which was to say --that you should provide assistance to any infant that was born - even if it was as a consequence of an induced abortion. That was not the bill that was presented at the state level. What that bill also was doing was trying to undermine Roe vs. Wade. By the way, we also had a bill, a law already in place in Illinois that insured life saving treatment was given to infants.
So for people to suggest that I and the Illinois medical society, so Illinois doctors were somehow in favor of withholding life saving support from an infant born alive is ridiculous. It defies common sense and it defies imagination and for people to keep on pushing this is offensive and it's an example of the kind of politics that we have to get beyond. It's one thing for people to disagree with me about the issue of choice, it's another thing for people to out and out misrepresent my positions repeatedly, even after they know that they're wrong. And that's what's been happening.
In other words, as David Freddoso wrote in yesterday's National Review Online:
Sen. Obama is currently misleading people about what he voted against, specifically claiming that the bill he voted against in his committee lacked “neutrality” language on Roe v. Wade. The bill did contain this language. He even participated in the unanimous vote to put it in.And that's why, less than a day after calling NRLC liars, Obama denied his own denial, as today's Sun reports:
Obama’s work against the bill to protect premature babies represents one of two times in his political career, along with his speech against the Iraq war, that he really stuck out his neck for something that might hurt him politically. Unlike his Iraq speech, Obama is deeply embarrassed about this one — so embarrassed that he is offering a demonstrable falsehood in explanation for his actions. Fortunately, the documents showing the truth are now available. [See them here.—Ed.]
His campaign yesterday acknowledged that he had voted against an identical bill in the state Senate, and a spokesman, Hari Sevugan, said the senator and other lawmakers had concerns that even as worded, the legislation could have undermined existing Illinois abortion law. Those concerns did not exist for the federal bill, because there is no federal abortion law.Obama's promise of "CHANGE" becomes more ironic with each passing day. This new twist marks at least the eleventh time he has changed his excuse for casting a vote that effectively supported infanticide.
Jill Stanek, who long ago catalogued Obama's top 10 reasons he voted against the Illinois Born Alive Infant Protection Act, now observes:
Little did Obama know his own words would so quickly condemn him. He admitted what he did "defies common sense and it defies imagination." In fact, it was heinous.Earlier yesterday, before the Obama campaign's admission, TownHall.com columnist Guy Benson offered a good rundown of the possible reasons "why Barack Obama really opposed this legislation," leading with this one:
While the Obama campaign tonight finally admitted Obama has misrepresented his Born Alive vote all these years, it had the audacity to offer a ludicrous excuse, an excuse Obama himself contradicted only 24 hours ago, as he has for years, that "I would have been completely in, fully in support of the federal bill that everybody supported."
It’s already been established that his standard explanation isn’t the truth, so what’s the genuine reason? One possible answer is that Obama’s commitment to legalized abortion runs so deep that he believes the Constitution guarantees that “right,” even if the initial abortion procedure fails. Put crudely, once a woman chooses to abort, she’s entitled to a dead baby. That position is so far out of the mainstream, it’s no wonder Obama may have decided to use misdirection and deception to explain away his vote.Indeed.
MORE: American Papist's Thomas Peters writes to me that he is going to comment on this today. Also, keep an eye on Jill Stanek's blog, as she has been doing yeoman's work keeping up with this fast-developing story.