Republicans Nullifying Conservatives
by Steve Deace
This article was originally published at Townhall.com
After the primary is over and the Republican establishment wins, the usual suspects line up to give the rest of us out here in the grassroots a sanctimonious lesson in party unity.
But after a series of unfortunate events like what took place in Oklahoma this week, with Republicans and not Democrats nullifying conservatives, the whole “rah-rah go team GOP” thing is becoming a tougher pill for some conservatives to swallow.
Oklahoma is among the reddest of red states. Republicans dominate state government there, possessing 31 of the 48 seats in the Oklahoma Senate and 68 of the 99 seats in the Oklahoma House. In 2010, Republican Mary Fallin was elected the state’s first female governor. She’s even being mentioned as a possible vice-presidential pick. Oklahoma is considered such a conservative bastion it’s one of the few states in this year’s primary where Mitt Romney was actually out-spent, and Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich combined for 62% of the vote.
In the Oklahoma Republican Party Platform’s “Statement of Principles” it says “God is the Author and Creator of life and all human life – born and unborn – should be protected.” That same Oklahoma Republican Party Platform says in Plank B that “(Republicans) believe that at the point of conception a person is granted the rights guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution, including life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
It’s necessary for you to know all this background information before you read what comes next.
Lots of pro-lifers and pro-life groups talk a good game about believing in protecting life at conception, but the Personhood Movement is actually trying to live up to it. Personhood ironically takes its name directly from Roe v. Wade itself when Justice Harry Blackmun wrote in the majority opinion, “If this suggestion of personhood (for the unborn) is established, the appellant’s case of course collapses for the fetus’ right to life would then be guaranteed.”
Furthermore, the 5th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states that no person “shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law.”
As recently as the beginning of this week, Oklahoma seemed poised to become the landmark state in the union to recognize the personhood of every citizen—born or unborn. Leaders from Personhood USA, one of the nation’s leading personhood organizations, even flew down to Oklahoma anticipating the Oklahoma Legislature was going to approve a historic personhood measure.
Sadly, they traveled all the way there just to see Lucy pull the football away from Charlie Brown again. Playing the role of Lucy for the Republican establishment this time was Oklahoma House Speaker Kris Steele, who informed Personhood USA he wouldn’t let the Personhood legislation come to a vote without what he called a “supremacy clause.”
What did he mean by a “supremacy clause?” He meant a clause that would still recognize Roe v. Wade as supreme over his own state’s law.
I will give you a second to allow the bile that has arisen in your throat to subside before going further. Now that that’s out of the way, let’s continue.
That’s right. The Republican Speaker of the Republican Oklahoma House of Representatives wants to maintain the supremacy of Roe v. Wade. Speaker Steele wants nine unelected justices in a court opinion rendered 39 years ago to determine the law for the sovereign state of Oklahoma, as opposed to the people elected to the Oklahoma Legislature by the people of Oklahoma. Maybe Speaker Steele, who graduated from Oklahoma Baptist University with a religion degree and as a Methodist Minister, would’ve demanded Abraham Lincoln include a “supremacy clause” in the Emancipation Proclamation to ensure Dred Scott would still reign supreme.
So much for state’s rights, huh?
I’ll bet Mr. Steele is one of those Republicans who promises conservatives he longs for the day Roe v. Wade will be overturned, but somebody should remind Mr. Steele you’ll have a tough time overturning it if you don’t actually challenge it.
Not to mention the fact his own party platform recognizes life comes from God regardless of what any government of man says. Does Mr. Steele need to be reminded that he swore an oath to the same God that is the giver of life? Should Mr. Steele honor the supremacy of the living God James Madison once referred to as “the Governor of the Universe,” or should Mr. Steele bow down to the supremacy of long since dead judges acting as their own unelected Constitutional Convention?
Gauberto Garcia-Jones of Personhood USA said his organization and many other pro-lifers stood outside the Oklahoma House of Representatives this week begging legislators to come out and hear what they had to say on behalf of the sanctity of human life.
“We wanted them to explain to us why it was more important to have ‘ice cream day at the Capitol’ then it was to stand for the most fundamental of God-given rights,” Garcia-Jones said. “Several came out and all they had were different excuses. Speaker Steele has told members he will not allow it to come up for a vote. 24 amendments have been filed to this bill to stop it, most of them by a pro-abortion Republican named Doug Cox. But the last one came from the Republican House Speaker himself.”
The pro-child killing lobby was also watching a Republican House Speaker trying to kill a bill that would sanctify life at conception in Oklahoma. In other words, the Speaker of the Oklahoma House not only violated his oath of office and his party platform, but in the pro-life battle he was committing what amounts to treason by giving aid and comfort to the enemy.
“It seems the Oklahoma GOP leadership is trying to fill the Romney Republican mold, which is a lot of pro-life speech but no pro-life action,” Personhood USA’s Keith Mason said. “What’s happening in Oklahoma begs a question pro-lifers must ask themselves: if the Republican leadership won’t vote pro-life why should we vote for them?”