I hate to break it to Peggy Noonan, if there's anyone out there who's taking an "extremist" position, it's the Catholic bishops and those on the right like herself, who are in disagreement with the 98 percent of Catholic women who have used contraception at some point in their lives.
Noonan joins the list of recent lackeys for the Catholic bishops, who are not only out of touch with their own female church members but with the American public in general. She does her best to conflate support for contraceptive services with being in support of abortion, and paints this as some black and white issue with only two sides which don't exist. I guess it's too much for her to grasp that if you don't want women to have abortions, then the first thing you should be supporting is for them to have access to contraception.
As always, what this really comes down to is sex and wanting to make people ashamed for having it. Conservatives can pretend this is about morality or abortion, but it always comes back to them wanting to control people's sex lives. And as far as these Catholic bishops go, when they stop protecting child molesters among their ranks and give women some equal standing in their church hierarchy instead of being second class citizens, maybe they'll have a leg to stand on to tell someone else what they're doing is immoral.
And if Republicans think running on a campaign of not paying for women's birth control is a winner this upcoming election as the Villagers in the corporate media keep trying to tell us it is, bring it on. They're going to see a backlash from this where they don't know what hit them once enough women start to realize they want to move backwards on covering contraception in the year 2012. Peggy Noonan is going to find out those so-called "leftists" in the Democratic base are actually right in the middle of where the rest of the country is at when it comes to the availability and affordability of contraceptives.
Transcript below the fold.
GREGORY: Wait a minute, let me get Peggy in here.
NOONAN: As a conservative, as I look at the administration, here's one thing that I think is kind of new the past few years. The leftist, if you will, part of the president's base seems to me to be, A, more leftist and, B, more powerful. When you have a White House, in the past month, E.J., that says, NARAL, National Abortion Rights Action League, and Planned Parenthood are here, the Catholic Church and I would argue the First Amendment are here, Who wins? NARAL and Planned Parenthood, that, to me, is the kind of politic calculation, just politics that is kind of mad, and that suggests a certain sort of, I hate to say extremism, but something rather extreme. Bill...
DIONNE: But keep in mind that the American people...
SCARBOROUGH: I think...
NOONAN: May I say, Bill Clinton wouldn't have done it. This is not a traditional Democratic Party thing. This was a break with recent history.
GREGORY: All right. Respond, E.J., yeah.
DIONNE: We agreed there was overreach on this contraception rule. But I know the left. The left is not to the left of where it was, number one. Number two, Barack Obama is a moderate progressive with the emphasis on moderate. Most socialists are insulted when Barack Obama is called a socialist. It's absurd that this man is a socialist. And I think most of the country...
NOONAN: I wasn't saying that. What I mean is he's being tugged.
DIONNE: Oh, no, I mean, you weren't saying that, but I was--right. But--and--but I don't--I think right now what you have is that the left is very happy he is raising the issue of economic inequality which Occupy Wall Street pushed him toward. A lot of the country agrees with him on that. And so actually I think the pressures to move further left, and there isn't that much of a left in America to begin with, are really minimized.
GREGORY: All right. Let me get a break in here.