First, I will veto any reduction in the impact of the Hyde Amendment or other existing limits on abortions or the public funding of abortions. (Applause.) I will support
-- I will support any reasonable suggestion that promises to reduce the number of
abortions. I support parental notification and will continue to, and I supported and
continue to support the ban on partial-birth abortion.
In many ways
-- in many ways, our liberty as Americans is protected by the separation of powers
between and among the three branches of government. In order for that to work as it was intended by our Founding Fathers, each one of the branches must respect the limitations that are placed on it by the Constitution. So it is critical that judges be conscientious in their role of interpreting the law, not creating the law.
And each opportunity I have, I
guarantee you I will appoint men and women who understand and act upon the principle
that I just said to you -- that it is their role to determine what other people meant when they wrote the words of our Constitution or the laws, not what they would like it to mean.
And if you need a yardstick, well what kind of judges would he appoint, then I can tell you I would appoint Supreme Court justices in the mold of Justice Scalia, Justice Thomas, Justice Alito, or Chief Justice Roberts. They might not agree on every interpretation, but over the course of hundreds of opinions, you will see a
consistency of interpretation that evidences their determination to figure out what the Constitution means.
This comes pretty close to what Land says he wants Giuliani to say:
He would [have to] say, number one, "This is a pro-life party. I realize I am out of step with where the party is, and I am not going to try to in any way weaken the [pro-life] plank." He could say, "I will only appoint strict constructionists, original-intent jurists to the federal judiciary." Strict constructionists by definition think that Roe v. Wade was an overreach and is a badly decided decision. If he were to agree to appoint a pro-life attorney general in the mode of a John Ashcroft …
And if he also said, "I will not veto any legislation that comes across my desk that restricts abortion. And if he were then to further say, "I will veto any legislation that comes to my desk that expands abortion rights …" If he did that he would mitigate the damage.
But Land remains obdurate: the summit speech did nothing in his view to mitigate his position among conservative Christians. Still, he’ll concede RG this much:
In the recent debate I think he helped himself a lot—[particularly] when he made the statement that if some sort of critical mass of four, five or six states [allow] same-sex marriage, he would support a constitutional amendment [to ban it]. He said that had always been his position. It may have been, but he certainly kept it a well-guarded secret. That will help him among social conservatives.
Call me squishy, but I’d be celebrating Giuliani’s gestures and looking for common ground wherever possible, at least to the point of being able to keep a door open for reconciliation. Stated another way: I’d rather be able to declare victory if Giuliani met me at 75% of the way, rather than have to concede defeat if he didn’t come all the way over to my side. Here’s RG invoking the shade of Reagan:
Ronald Reagan had a great way of summarizing it. He used to say, “My 80 percent friend is not my 100 percent enemy.”
That’s politics. If Land doesn’t want to play politics, he shouldn’t be giving interviews to Newsweek.