Martha Coakley's Bait and Switch on Abortion

Can't say I didn't warn you about Martha Coakley. The latest: a Bait and switch. During her campaign to replace Sen. Ted Kennedy, she said she wouldn't support a bill with restrictions on abortion.

Today, she announced her support for the health care bill with its restrictions on abortion funding.

Coakley then:

Coakley’s stand was a major point of debate during the campaign; several of her opponents criticized her for being willing to sink the overall health care bill over a single issue, but she insisted that there were some things on which she would not compromise.


“Let’s be clear on what’s principled here,’’ she said at the time of her opponent, US Representative Michael Capuano. “If it comes down to this in the Senate, and it’s the health care bill or violating women’s rights, where does he stand?’’

How much did she mislead?

Coakley used her stark position on abortion rights to appeal to supporters for donations; in an e-mail, she declared her decision to take her position “a defining moment’’ in her campaign.

Asked just last week whether she would vote against a bill that went beyond current law in restricting abortion coverage, Coakley said, “Yes, that’s right.’’

What's her excuse now?

Coakley said that although she was disappointed that the Senate bill “gives states additional options regarding the funding mechanisms for women’s reproductive health services,’’ she would reluctantly support it because it would provide coverage for millions of uninsured people and reduce costs.

Martha Coakley is not someone we need in the U.S. Senate. She certainly is no Ted Kennedy. (More here.)In my opinion, she's as unprincipled now as she was during the prosecution of nanny Louise Woodward.

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    Coakley should fit right in with (5.00 / 2) (#2)
    by MO Blue on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:11:53 PM EST
    the current Senate. Same high level principled approach and she already has the rhetoric down pat.

    I just checked Barbara Boxer's (none / 0) (#4)
    by oculus on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:16:58 PM EST
    official Senate website.  Nada re Senate HCR bill and/or Nelson's amendment.

    Today I unsubscribed from Sen. Boxer's (5.00 / 2) (#13)
    by Spamlet on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:30:16 PM EST
    e-mail list and gave my reasons.

    I'm so effin disappointed in her (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by nycstray on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:34:50 PM EST
    and to think I'm moving back to her state. {sigh}

    She supposedly was involved directly (none / 0) (#6)
    by andgarden on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:17:59 PM EST
    in negotiation the Nelson compromise.

    As was my ne'er do well, (none / 0) (#9)
    by shoephone on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:24:41 PM EST
    tennis shoe wearing, Patty Murray.

    She's following the pack on HCR, but (none / 0) (#33)
    by Inspector Gadget on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 07:52:12 AM EST
    if you aren't aware of the work she's done on behalf of Veterans, Seniors, Boeing, etc., you need to do your homework.

    Patty is a solid democrat, but we've seen something change in all of them under this administration.


    I have not been persuaded (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by Steve M on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:18:38 PM EST
    that the Senate bill is worse than current law.  Not that I like current law.

    The best case I've heard (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by andgarden on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:19:39 PM EST
    is that Hyde has to be periodically renewed.

    But what I would really like to know is whether people thought that Hyde was going to be abandoned before HCR.


    No (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by nycstray on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:28:55 PM EST
    I musta missed something, but I didn't think anyone was looking for Hyde to be abandoned (although that would be nice). What I thought we were looking for is keeping it from expanding to private insurance in the exchange. It's one thing to say fed dollars/subsidies can't pay for it, another not to have it available in exchange plans and/or making women buy extra coverage in case they should need full reproductive health care.

    And that's what we got in (none / 0) (#24)
    by gyrfalcon on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 12:26:02 AM EST
    the Senate bill.  State already prohibit abortion covarage.  Nelson changes nothing.

    Hyde did not cost women more (none / 0) (#14)
    by Cream City on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:31:04 PM EST
    for health insurance.  This bill will, if they wnat abortion riders, wait and see.  Or if they can't afford the extra, they will pay in too many pregnancies and poor health from those and from too many mouths to feed, and on and on the downward spiral goes.

    And when women already are making so much less than men, living closer to the edge, they also will be more likely to face the fines if they can't afford insurance.  Or just more likely to die.

    Thanks so much, Dem Party.  


    Well, not exactly (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by andgarden on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:32:58 PM EST
    Group health plans bought outside of the exchange (i.e., for most people insured through employers) are not impacted.

    The exchange just doesn't exist yet.


    Not directly, but I have read (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by Cream City on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:54:24 PM EST
    reasoned scenarios that suggest wider effects, based on understanding how insurance markets work.

    It's possible (5.00 / 1) (#19)
    by andgarden on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:56:00 PM EST
    But there was probably no way around this in doing healthcare reform.

    I think the national OPM plan could be the backdoor way around this.


    This gets to the reason for the unease (5.00 / 2) (#22)
    by Cream City on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 12:13:40 AM EST
    among so many now:  We don't know.  We're going into this not knowing if it going to abrogate the Constitutional rights of more than half of Americans, not knowing whether it is going to make health insurance -- and health care -- less accessible and affordable for even more Americans, including those of us who have health insurance at exorbitant rates that may go up even more now while we also are paying more taxes for the rest. . . .

    I don't think we ought to be committing to ungodly amounts of hundreds of billions of dollars and not know.  I certainly don't think we ought to be potentially abrogating Constitutional rights and not know -- not us, not U.S. Senators, not a president who boasted of being a Con law prof.


    Well, the next step (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by andgarden on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 12:24:18 AM EST
    is to get either a Congress or a Supreme Court that agrees with you that there is such an abrogation. I honestly don't know which will come first.

    The Supremes have not ruled on FISA (none / 0) (#28)
    by Cream City on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 12:55:09 AM EST
    or the Patriot Act or so many incursions on my rights, but I don't need them to tell me it is so.

    You're thinking like a lawyer, understandably, so it isn't so for you until the Supremes agree.  I'm thinking like a historian.  Or, say, like a citizen.


    it should go without saying (none / 0) (#29)
    by andgarden on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 01:01:34 AM EST
    that I think it's unconstitutional. But my opinion is neither here nor there.

    Oh. Then why (none / 0) (#32)
    by Cream City on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 06:51:09 AM EST
    get into next steps from official bodies?  I say what I think,

    It seemed a relevant point (none / 0) (#34)
    by andgarden on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 08:10:09 AM EST
    What Jeralyn forgets to mention (5.00 / 4) (#12)
    by dk on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:29:11 PM EST
    is that Mike Capuano voted for the House bill that contained Stupac, and the other two Democratic primary candidates said that they would have as well.

    All I can do with my vote is punish politicians who vote and say they'll vote the wrong way and reward politicians who vote and say they'll vote the right way.  

    Back in the GE campaign, Jeralyn didn't speak too kindly of people who sat out from voting.  Based on her posting here, I guess she has changed her mind.    

    And Ted would have voted how? (5.00 / 3) (#20)
    by Pacific John on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:59:53 PM EST
    I'm thinking Ted Kennedy was no Ted Kennedy.

    Clearly he would have voted for it (5.00 / 2) (#21)
    by andgarden on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 12:03:26 AM EST
    I think (none / 0) (#36)
    by CST on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 04:11:12 PM EST
    the fact that Vicky Kennedy was present at the 1AM vote should put to rest any suggestions otherwise.

    I Knew Ted Kennedy. He was my friend. (5.00 / 2) (#26)
    by Dan the Man on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 12:47:41 AM EST
    Ted Kennedy was no Ted Kennedy.

    This is ridiculous, Jeralyn (5.00 / 2) (#25)
    by gyrfalcon on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 12:37:13 AM EST
    The Nelson language has essentially no impact on the status quo re abortion, and every single Democrat in the Senate voted for this bill.

    You'll have to try harder to trash Coakley.

    Arguably the same was true about Stupak (none / 0) (#27)
    by andgarden on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 12:49:30 AM EST
    So the debate is the same. Of course, almost all pro-choice Democrats, and every pro-choice Democratic woman, voted for the  Stupak language (in the House).

    Shrink the tent! (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by mmc9431 on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 06:47:56 AM EST
    If a politician can't accept the party platform, then they shouldn't accept the party's  money or support. Run as an independant then.

    Democrats are so worried about a majority that they are willing to sell their soul for the buck. We keep endorsing these closested Republicans and then we're all bent out of shape when they hold the party up for ransom over basic party values.

    I don't agree with the Republican platform but at least their voters know how their candidates are going to vote on core platform issues.

    We've expanded the tent so large that we're to the point where Democrats can't even agree on what day of the week it is, let alone what the party stands for.  

    Purity! (5.00 / 1) (#35)
    by Socraticsilence on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:12:59 PM EST
    We need to go Tea Bagger and have a 40 member Senate! Seriously, in a Democracy compromises are made.

    The Senate bill is different from (none / 0) (#1)
    by andgarden on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:06:15 PM EST
    the House bill. Stupak was worse.

    In any case, MA voters now have a choice between Coakley and her clearly inferior Republican opponent.

    Has no one told you (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by CoralGables on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:15:02 PM EST
    that youth isn't supposed to be the voice of reason? You're still supposed to be angry, not logical.

    I'm often angry and logical (none / 0) (#5)
    by andgarden on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:17:33 PM EST
    but not always at the same time.

    gosh, (none / 0) (#10)
    by cpinva on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:27:43 PM EST
    color me stunned, that a politician would change whatever principal they've taken to standing on!

    shocked i tell you, utterly shocked!

    ok, maybe not.

    of course, i wasn't shocked when obama failed to deliver after the election either.

    maybe i'm just a cynic.

    I'm at a loss (none / 0) (#15)
    by nycstray on Sun Dec 20, 2009 at 11:32:39 PM EST
    WTF are all these so called Dem women thinking?

    Thank dawg my niece is having a boy. At least he'll have a somewhat fair shot at life/equality. Unless he's gay of course!

    this is a moot point re: MA senate, but (none / 0) (#30)
    by tworivers on Mon Dec 21, 2009 at 03:48:24 AM EST
    For all his bluntness of speech, I like Capuano. For the most part, he says what he means and doesn't mince words.  The fact that I now live in his hometown may have something to do with it as well, but on most issues, I find myself agreeing with him.  He voted against the Iraq War Resolution along with Ted K., which is a point in his favor imo.

    Of course, during the campaign he said he would vote fot a bill with the Stupak amendment, then turned around and waffled a bit on it.   But as many commenters have pointed out, pretty much every Dem (in their eagerness to have some bill with which to declare "victory") ended up supporting Stupak (in all its stu-pidity)