In response to the comments on this post, I thought it worthwhile to do a little digging. Here’s a site detailing Obama’s record on this issue. From the pro-life point of view, it’s not pretty. He has, for example, voted against a partial-birth abortion ban that provided for an exception regarding the life of the mother because it lacked an exception for the health of the mother, an exception capacious enough to amount to pba on demand. He also voted against the parental notification bill. And his rating from National Right to Life is a big fat zero.
In other words, for all the agonizing in which he engages, his record is that of a garden-variety pro-choicer.
Indeed, consider what he says about his role as the father of two daughters:
“I’m all for education for our young people, encouraging abstinence until marriage, but I also believe that young people do things regardless of what their parents tell them to do and I don’t want my daughters ending up in really difficult situations because I didn’t communicate to them, how to protect themselves if they make a mistake. I think we’ve got to have that kind of comprehensive view that says family planning and education for our young people and so forth – to prevent teen pregnancies, to prevent the kinds of situations that lead to women having to struggle with these difficult decisions and we should be supportive of those efforts."
Note that he starts with abstinence and then moves to birth control (which undermines the abstinence message). But he’s willing to let his daughters "struggle with the issues," in the event they are confronted with "unplanned parenthood."
Interestingly, you can’t find much on Obama’s campaign website about abortion--only this. His reluctance to talk about it--despite a record that abortion advocates ought to regard as sterling--provides an interesting contrast with HRC’s forthright embrace of "choice."
Update: Our friend the Friar notes an odd turn of phrase earlier in the campaign season.