As we prepare for the run-off in the 2010 South Carolina Republican gubernatorial primary, I hope to do a series of pieces comparing candidates Nikki Haley and Gresham Barrett.
First, obviously, is pro-life.
On Haley’s page, under “Right to Life,” there are three items.
The first is this video:
The second is this text:
I believe every life has a value and is blessed by God – my husband was adopted and my pro-life convictions stem from the fact I feel the blessings of that value every day knowing someone chose life for him. I see it every day in my two children as I watch them grow. My hope is that we continue to encourage and work towards educating that value of life to everyone.
OK, pretty generic Republican speech.
The third item is a letter from Holly Gatling of SC Citizens for Life, certifying Nikki Haley’s 100% pro-life voting record.
At one point last year, when I first heard of her campaign through Facebook, I found the state website that shows various pieces of legislation and legislators’ votes on them. Most of the votes were procedural, and full of so many double-negatives, I couldn’t figure out what was saying what. However, Haley had added her name to the list of co-sponsors for the South Carolina human life amendment.
Meanwhile, contender Gresham Barrett emphasizes self-congratulation on the meaningless partial birth abortion plan and the specific legislation for a 24 hour waiting period in South Carolina.
Granted, neither candidate expresses a particularly activist agenda on abortion, but there are key differences.
a) Haley, advertises her 100% rating which includes the Human Life Amendment; Barrett’s rhetoric shows him to be a dyed-in-the-wool incrementalist.
b) Haley emphasizes her personal commitment to the pro-life cause (due to her husband being adopted), versus Barrett’s focus being more clearly political,
I have always favored pro-life women over pro-life men, because most people do think of this as a “women’s issue.” I have always maintained that the only way to truly stop abortion is to have pro-life women in office, or men with strongly pro-life wives. Nancy Reagan, Barbara Bush and Laura Bush are all pro-choice. Former SC Governor David Beasley’s father-in-law was an abortionist.
Secondly, male or female, every truly committed pro-lifer has a personal reason for being so. For Sarah Palin, it’s her son with Down’s syndrome and her out-of-wedlock grandchild. For Nikki Haley, it’s her husband.