Who cares if the VP is Pro Life?

Roberts, Alito and Scalia all believe Roe v. Wade is "settled law" (stare decisis) and aside from Thomas, all the rest are pro Roe anyway. It's a non-issue for at least the next twenty years.

The next president will likely get one justice since Stevens is 88. My guess is it will be Federal Court Judge Michael Luddig. (Who is conservative, but agrees with stare decisis in this matter and will uphold Roe v. Wade)

How is this issue even remotely important this election?


Several of you don't seem to get what I'm saying. The president can only do ONE thing about Roe v. Wade. Appoint justices. There is nothing McCain or Palin could do to alter the position of the court. And they would be hard pressed to find a Supreme Court nominee that isn't bound by the rule of law and the principal of stare decisis.

Roberts and Alito, both Bush appointees, have dissappointed the right-to-life folks, and future justices are likely to do the same.

It's no longer an issue in the government, even if it is an issue in our hearts and minds. Both parties are just preaching to the choir when they talk about it.

Update 2:

Joe Fink:

I would agree that Scalia is generally conservative, but Lawrence v. Texas had nothing to do with abortion. I could argue that Kelo v. New Haven applies too, but only in the same very abstract way.

Also, could you please explain to me how Sarah Palin was in Rwuanda in the mid 1990s trying to get Clinton to do something about the genocide there if she had no passport?

Update 3:

Sorry, *Rwanda.

Update 4:


"You don't understand very much about why people vote -- in most cases it has very little to do with rational thought and everything to do with emotion."

I do understand Dino. It's the thing that concerns me most about the run-up to this election.

Update 5:

Ms. Taurus:

I'm certain that Sarah doesn't mean to insult you. Sometimes it's helpful to understand the other side of an issue. Right to choose folks don't think there is a human involved in an abortion decision other than the mother, and possibly the father. Pro life supporters believe that an enseminated egg is a human. They don't see any difference between an abortion and shooting the guy that got you pregnant.

That's a pretty big divide, which is why it makes such a strong wedge issue.

Both candidates are for change this election. I tried to make the case that Roe v. Wade won't change in my lifetime, so let's put that one aside for now and try to pick the best team for the job. After November, let's all get together and see if we can get some good things done for America and for ourselves!

Update 6:


That's a great argument except one thing. Constitutional lawyers MUST be liberal, otherwise they wouldn't be needed. Conservatives don't write law from the bench and we Americans rightly complain that liberal justices do. Constitutional lawyers will always look at the "what if" extreme interpretation of the Constitution and use it to scare us. It's self preservation for them.

Scalia, Roberts and Alito are all grounded in stare decisis on this issue. Justice Thoman, alone, is of concern. McCain and Palin can't get anything done about Roe v. Wade. But like Bubbha answered, they can because of their personal positions on the subject, energize the evangelists.

28 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    This issue comes up at every presidential election. There are so many crucial issues to worry about for the good of our country, but the republicans always make a big stink about the abortion issue.

    They say the word "liberal" as if it is something nasty. They act as if we are just salivating for the chance to kill babies. Pro-choice does not mean pro-abortion or pro-death. I don't like abortion and I think if people used birth control like they should and could be doing, there wouldn't be many abortions. It chaps my hide when I hear these conservatives say they are against sex education and making birth control readily available but want to outlaw abortions. When are they going to get it? Abstinence Only programs don't work!

    I'd like to see important issues addressed and solved. Things like the war and the economy. I'd like to keep the government out of people's private lives. I also want the separation of church and state maintained. Freedom to marry who we want, read the books that we want, and freedom from religion being forced down our kid's throat in school.

    Ok sorry, but this got me started on a rant.

  • 1 decade ago

    Scalia has indicated he may follow the O'Connor test (but he may not) regarding stare decisis, which says that before a case is overturned, there should be a consistent whittling away at it's effect and a significant movement over time to try to alter its effect. I'm not stating that quite precisely, but Scalia argued in his dissent in Lawrence v. Texas that Roe meets that standard, while Bowers, which Lawrence overturned, does not. Now his point was targeted more at showing that Bowers shouldn't be overturned than arguing that Roe should, but he got his message out just the same. Since then, there has been more whittling away at Roe, which has increased since Alito and Roberts joined the court. I am concerned that if Stevens is replaced with another member of the conservative block, Roe could be out in the next 10 years, perhaps sooner. I'm also concerned about the many other laws they are changing, like the complete dessimation of the antitrust system.

    As for why the VP's standing matters, 1/3 VPs become president, usually because the president dies in office. Given McCain's health and age, that's an even stronger possibility now, and I disagree with Palin more than McCain and she doesn't even have the experience argument he makes (or even had a passport before last year).

  • Batik
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    It is relevant because in the great Saddle Back Forum McCain pledged more or less to overturn Roe V. Wade because life begins at conception. And said he would not appoint any justices like... and rattled off Souter, Ginsberg, Stevens etc. all except Roberts, Scalli, Alito and Thomas. The next President is likely to get two justices. And although it may be stare decisis, there are so many decisions that can make it impossible for a woman to obtain a legal abortion if they start dragging all kinds of issues through the Court. It is a short time frame. And courts can be notoriously slow.

    They both said probably two appointments but it will only take one more vote to tip the balance. There are 4 now that would like to get rid of Roe V Wade, a majority on the Court is 5.

    So having worked when I was younger on this issue. I am tired of seeing it hauled up over and over again in a million different ways and the Court sometimes play games.

    McCain is committed to using the Courts to either overturn or severely damage Roe V Wade. This is the opinion of both Our own local Constitutional Professor on our local PBS news station and also the opinion of Laurence Tribe as expressed on Anderson 360. Tribe is a long time Harvard Constitutional Law Professor.

    And he gave the same basic answer that Professor Bender had given

    about a week before. Essentially Roe V Wade would be overturned or gutted in legal ways by a McCain Court.

    In the interest of full disclosure, Mr Tribe did teach Barack Obama at Harvard. and feels he is the most amazing all around student he has ever taught for his maturity, ability to write and do research. So he is not impartial when it comes to Obama. And that is out of about 30,000 students.

    So I do care because it the issue of a Constitutional change to make marriage between a man and a woman was also up for grabs. That is a states right issue. And that anyone as incompetent as McCain has become is over the top. And for a time I admired and supported him for pressing for more ttoops at the begining and opposing the Bush tax cuts and borrowing the money from China so we can pay them interest and deep six our own economy.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    The Anti Abortion religious right cares, that's a big reason why they are so excited about Palin. They have never seemed to realize that the Republicans have never done anything about overturning Roe vs. Wade and vote republican to a great extent because they always give lip service to banning abortion and have put it in their Platform again this year.

    The religious right doesn't know stare decisis from Miley Cyrus.

    PS You don't understand very much about why people vote -- in most cases it has very little to do with rational thought and everything to do with emotion.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I care. It's as important to me as it is to the social conservatives who have a long range plan to see Roe v. Wade overturned. People who think it can't be overturned have got their heads in the sand. But being a pro-life candidate is just the tip of the iceberg with Palin. She has all the Evangelical ideas that I am against from putting creationism in the schools and taking sex education out, from being against free speech (i.e. she fired a librarian for not removing books from the library that Sarah deemed unsuitable) to having blind faith in the war machine of Bush and Cheney.

    Abortion is an election issue because the social conservatives have made it so in the past few elections and they are working to elect people who will continue to try to take reproductive rights away from families.

    Source(s): .
  • 1 decade ago

    You are correct that the Executive Branch cannot legislate or interpret Constitutional issues. Obviously American government is no longer taught in government schools.

    The job of the Executive branch is just that, to execute and enforce the laws as passed by the Legislative Branch so long as they do not violate the Constitution as interpreted by the Judicial Branch.

    Many people, including judges and legislators, think that judges are supposed to make the laws and legislators are suppose to investigate, raise taxes, and only pass laws that restrict liberty.

    Abortion, like everything else, is used as a wedge issue. Proponents should at least take the time to read:


    If it's OK for her to be pro-life, it certainly is OK for a VP to be pro-life.

    At least they both follow their religious belief rather than making a heretical mockery of it.

  • 1 decade ago

    I am a former Republican turned Democrat. I choose to change my party because I put the Pro Life issue aside. We have much more pressing issues. War, Global Warming, Health Care, Clean Energy. I am pro-life. I just think that is we have a responsibility to all of our children to get moving on what kind of a world we will be bringing them into.

    Unfortunately, most Republicans can't see past the pro-life issue. And so, yes, it is important to the majority.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Your RNC convention MADE it an issue last night, when they repeatedly brought it up....never mentioning the things that MOST americans care about. It was also brought up in 2000 and 2004 by Bush and Co.......b/c abortion, gay marriage, etc. scares some voters. If you don't think the GOP has pushed this agenda for the past 8 years--only during election cycles, you haven't been paying attention.

  • 1 decade ago

    Its a nice wedge issue to get the far right-wingers stirred up. You are right, it is a non-issue. Most federal courts accept the stare decisis, and that's why there aren't any Roe V Wade-types cases in the Supreme Court now.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    it's not an issue in my opinion. some people don't know where the candidates stand on certain issues, so they resort back to roe v. wade because it's all they know. i'm personally pro choice and am leaning more towards mccain/palin. i see roe v.wade as a "settled law" as well.

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