- Reason Awakes -

Abortion

 

The Right to Choose


Recognizing that abortion is a truly polarizing issue we hope to reach a compromise position, and to move this issue off of the national agenda. 


The right of adult women to choose to have an abortion in the first and second trimesters is the law of the land based on the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision. We support that decision, despite disagreeing with the constitutional theory on which it is based. 


Public Funding of Abortions


We do not, however, believe that this right entails an obligation for federal, state, or local governments to subsidize abortion procedures and we oppose efforts to use tax dollars at all levels to subsidize abortions.  We would in general support candidates who support Roe v. Wade and who oppose public funding of abortions.


The Rights of Minors


We also do not believe that the constitutional right to an abortion extends to minors without their parents consent. Nor do we believe that minors have a constitutional right to obtain abortions without informing their parents. We believe that these issues, which are not addressed in Roe v. Wade, should be resolved legislatively at the state level.


On the issues regarding the rights of minors, we will neither oppose nor support efforts at the state level to establish such rights legislatively, and we would support candidates on both sides of these issues.  We would oppose legislation at the federal level to either confer or deny this right to minors without their parent's consent.


Late Term Abortions


On the issue of  the right to a “Late Term Abortion,” which is also not protected by the Supreme Court's decision,  we will neither support nor oppose legislative efforts at the state level to restrict such abortions. We would oppose legislation at the federal level to either confer or deny the right to a "late term abortion." In the event that legislation is proposed to restrict late term abortions, at either the state or the federal level, we would support exemptions for the health of the pregnant woman.


On the whole, it is our preference that all of these subsidiary issues on abortion rights, such as the rights of minors and late term abortions, be resolved at the state level for the foreseeable future. We would therefore generally support candidates who also felt that these issues should be resolved at the state rather than the federal level, but we would be neutral toward their substantive positions on these issues.


Support for Programs Designed to Discourage Abortions


Although we accept Roe v. Wade, which prohibits using the coercive power of the state to ban abortions during the first two trimesters, we recognize the legitimate ethical concerns of those who oppose abortion. Because of this we believe that governments at all levels should take actions to reduce the incidence of abortion, such as efforts to reduce teenage pregnancy, subsidize prenatal medical care, and support and facilitate adoption.

Our proposal for providing subsidized universal health insurance (see Health Care plank) might also include contraceptive care as a covered item, in order to reduce the incidence of abortion. 


Legal Rights for the Fetus


We oppose legislation designed to grant legal rights to the fetus. These laws are problematic from any number of points of view, including their effects on contraception, fertility treatments and the rights provided under Roe v. Wade.

 

 



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