As a Democrat, you are permitted to support the war with Iraq (see Sens. Edwards and Kerry). You may support school choice (see Sen. Lieberman and former Gov. Howard Dean). You can even diverge from the party line on gun control (see Gov. Dean). But if you want to be president, you simply can’t stray from the idea that abortion should be available on demand.As Balko says: he's just another politician. Just so. But then what do you expect? Blako then goes into strange waters for a libertarian:
That’s why Kucinich flipped. He sold his soul. Right there on national television.
If the left truly valued "choice," they’d push for Roe to be overturned. Such a move would not, as many believe, outlaw abortion. Rather, it would take the issue away from the federal government and return it to states and municipalities, where it belongs.No. The "choice" in pro-choice is about an asserted individual right. If you believe in such a right, then it should not be a subject of democratic decisionmaking. Individual rights are the opposite of socialism (of which democracy is the kindest, gentlest variant). Given that the courts are the most undemocratic institutions in our democracy, they are the place you would most expect pro-choicer to want to fight their battle in.
There is certainly an argument to be made that Roe was a bad decision. But it is not an argument from "choice"; it's an argument about what constitutionalism means, and what powers the central government really should have. And there is also, following Balko above, an argument to be made from a different sort of choice - democratic socialism, in essence: that abortion should not be an individual right, but a subject of democratic decisionmaking; and that the best place to make the decision is at as local a level as possible. If you buy that, they having the national level be the place where it is decided seems unnecessary and divisive.
What's odd about the left and "choice" is not that they want choice to be upheld universally and undemocratically as possible. That's how a right should be. It's that they want it to be upheld as an individual right. This from the same people that think it is necessary for democratic governance of almost everything: education, corporations, drugs, guns, rents, personal saving, insurance, speech, etc, etc. Basically they think that all of life should be put up to a vote and regulated by experts - except abortion, and the first amendment. That's what odd. David Boaz makes this point clearly.