06.06.2012 05:28 AM

Harper and abortion: we were wrong


As I confessed in a column in the Sun a few weeks ago – I’ll find the link eventually – those of us who insisted Stephen Harper had a hidden agenda to outlaw abortion need to consider this:

We were wrong. Wrong, wrong, wrong.

He’s not doing what we said he would, is he?


  1. Brammer says:

    Could this be the wedge that finally cracks open the CON fortress? 10 years is a long time to hold your nose….

  2. Reality.Bites says:

    If Harper were made dictator-for-life, who knows what he would do. Who knows what any of us would do with absolute, permanent power. But Harper isn’t a dictator for life, he’s a politician who has to face the voters. We’ve seen time and time again through several campaigns that he knows these issues only hurt him and he’s not an idiot.

  3. JamesHalifax says:

    Warren, I”m sure some of the more desperate MP’s in the Opposition side will still warn us about the “hidden agenda” even though said agenda has been openly obvious to those who are paying attention.

  4. Conservative Socialist says:

    Abortion is a human rights issue where there are two conflicting sides: those of the unborn and those of the woman.

    I don’t think any rational person would say that an unborn child a week before birth is something that can be disposed of on a whim, in spite of the current strict legal definition that exists right now. I doubt that any abortion doctor would even perform the procedure so late at that point on perfectly healthy unborn baby that presents no danger to the mother.

    I am admittedly conflicted by the conflict. But it’s not my number one issue, so it’s not a deciding factor for who I vote for.

    Harper does not want to touch the issue because the public is overwhelmingly in favor of abortion. He already spent political capital on abolishing the long gun registry.

  5. Marc says:

    > He’s not doing what we said he would, is he?

    First time for everything. Who had this date in the pool?

    • Geoff Tarbat says:

      Or, perhaps he is just being sensitive to majority opinion? I know it’s unthinkable to some, but Harper is quite possibly the most thoughtful and morally decent PM in the past 50 years. And for the record – he has never done ANYTHING the shrill class has said he would

  6. Ted H says:

    No one actually favours abortion. Any young woman finding herself in the position of considering the procedure should be given all of the counselling, assistance and support she requires, right up to finding adoptive parents if necessary. And yes, it should be paid for by the health care system.
    If she decides against the abortion, all well and good, if she decides to have it with the consent of her doctor, it is unfortunate, but that is her choice. No interest group, government or church has any business trying to legislate their concept of morality on anyone else. God allows us free will, who are we to do any less for our fellow humans?

    • JamesHalifax says:

      Ted H….

      good post. That’s exactly how I feel.

      • Ted H says:

        Thanks, it’s nice to find some common ground.

        • JamesHalifax says:

          Different politics doesn’t necessarily mean we have to disagree on everything.

          • Ted H says:

            The key is to find the reality based, thoughtful, long term and humane solution to any problem, one that also advances the common good and enhances the country’s quality of life, which of course includes economic prospects.

            That should be the goal, regardless of political viewpoint. Unfortunately, some political viewpoints seek to impose their own pre-conceived ideological view of reality on “reality”. Some are far worse than others, some come reasonable close, none are ideal.

          • JamesHalifax says:

            dammit Ted…..

            Stop writing things that I agree with.

    • Tiger says:

      Given that we do, in fact, have a criminal justice system, I’d suggest that people are quite comfortable legislating their concepts of morality on others.

      And they’re right to do so.

      Abortion’s a tough issue, as people’s moral senses clash on it. Canadians tend, after some discomforting thoughts, to come to about a two-and-a-half- or three-to-one majority in favour of not criminalizing it. So it isn’t criminalized anymore, and no major political party has a pro-life majority, not even the CPC. (See policy convention vote in 2005 — 55% of delegates voted for the status quo, no law on abortion.)

    • Dan says:

      Who decides how much counselling, assistance, and support she “requires”? Is that between her and her doctor, or does the government say “no, please, we insist?”

  7. Ted H says:

    Yes we do have a criminal justice system, based on the harm an individual’s actions can do to others and able to measure out suitable compensation and punishment.
    I was referring specifically to issues such as abortion and same sex marriage that a certain mentality seeks to criminalize even though no harm is done in terms of the normal understanding of crime. There is of course harm done to the fetus and that is the big uncomfortable elephant in the room.
    We can try to talk women out of abortion, we can offer them all the help possible but ultimately the decision is her’s along with her doctor, based on medical criteria, not someone else’s moral judgement.

  8. Dan says:

    I’m left wondering what will become of the Liberals who want the party to be “fiscally conservative, but socially liberal” (no caps).

    It’s hard enough to find someone who loves the Conservative economy, but would care enough to throw them out because they nibble away at equality for gays or privacy for women.

    Imagine how hard it is to sell that platform when the Conservatives don’t even touch those issues.

    • Geoff Tarbat says:

      It’s been tried, and failed of course – specifically because they DON’T nibble away at anyone’s rights. The Liberal “Chicken Little” strategy is a dead horse – leaving them with exactly nothing to fall back on..

  9. Philippe says:

    I think for the first time, Harper may face dissent within his own ranks. The pressure on some socially Conservative MPs by fringe (er.. kooky) elements within their constituencies will be pretty heavy. It will be interesting to see how this plays out.

  10. Gerry P. says:

    Abortion is not about the issue of life or death it’s about the right of a women to choose a legal medical service in confidence between her and her medical provider. In Canada women have rights and we also have the right to publicly funded health care which happens to be the ending of gestation if the women so chooses. I’m no fan of this right winged Nazi government we have but I’m sure glad to see that the PM is actually trying to consider the civil rights of women which will set an example world wide for womens rights and equality.

  11. Jon Adams says:

    Off-topic, but this caught my eye in the Globe article:

    “Mr. Harper doesn’t shield incumbent MPs from challengers…”

    I’m sure this comes as a surprise to the riding of Calgary West and to the current premier of Alberta.

  12. Philip says:


    It looks as if Woodworth has found it convenient to hide behind his family for his boss. Normally I don’t get this cynical but it’s hard not to be when this story appeared first:

    Personally, I’m absolutely thrilled to see this sort of knee capping in the Conservative caucus. Nothing creates lasting bad blood like having to swallow your core beliefs, with a large side of shit, on command. It couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch of people.

    • MCBellecourt says:

      LOL, I agree, Esp. with the two last sentences, succinctly put! In the same token, though, I find it rather insulting to the taxpayer that the Cons keep playing these stupid games. And that’s what it is, isn’t it? Playing games.

      We expect good government, and get bread and circuses from a bunch of overpaid pompous pratts who seem to think there’s nothing better to do. If the voting public finally gets their heads out of their asses and comes to this realisation, then the retaining wall surrounding their house of cards will erode away as well, and we can finally get back to repairing the damage they’ve done after we boot their Conny bums out.

      • Philip says:

        I think Canadians are starting to realize just what a complete gong show this Conservative government is. The funny part is that this was Harper’s dynasty to build. A little humility, a little competence and a little governing would have gone a long way. Nope. That sort of thing isn’t in these Conservative’s make up at all. Look to the back to back disasters of the Davos OAS announcement and Vic Toews epic meltdown as the turning points for the Conservatives. The F-35 scheme is another gift that keeps the fiscal incompetence of the Conservatives in the public’s mind. Good times.

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