So far the new Republican regime is off to a rocky start. It seems that the Moderate McDonnell was really a cultural warrior. I wish that hadn’t happen. I was trying to support him.
Unfortunately, Marshall-gate has captured national attention. He has tried to explain his words but having failed at that, he is now blaming Capital News Service for misinterpreting his comments.
According to the Richmond Times Dispatch:
After first blaming himself, Del. Robert G. Marshall, R-Prince William, now is accusing a student-run media service of misinterpreting comments he made last week that suggested that disabled children were a form of punishment for women who had abortions.
In a floor speech today, the General Assembly’s most prominent abortion foe said he used a poor choice of words but never made the comment the Capital News Service said he made.
CNS is run by students at Virginia Commonwealth University.
Urging a prohibition against state funding of the pro-choice Planned Parenthood, Marshall told a news conference last week that “the number of children who are born subsequent to a first abortion with handicaps has increased dramatically. Why? Because when you abort the first born of any, nature takes its vengeance on the subsequent children.”
He continued: “In the Old Testament the first born of every being, animal and man, was dedicated to the Lord. There’s a special punishment Christians would suggest.”
In its opening paragraph, CNS reported Marshall “says disabled children are God’s punishment to women who have aborted their first pregnancy.”
In his speech, Marshall said, “I certainly could have used better words to explain the medical research findings which show a high incidence of complications following induced abortions.”
Marshall said people who know him know that he would never make a claim that handicapped children are a punishment.
Governor McDonnell also spoke out against Marshall’s words:
McDonnell was asked about the comments of his longtime former colleague on his first appearance on the monthly “Ask the Governor” program on WTOP radio.
“Delegate Marshall, who has been a champion for the pro-life cause, I think made some very poor and offensive and wrong comments and he has now since apologized for them and it doesn’t help the cause on the larger issue of the importance of protecting human life that I believe in,” McDonnell said.
Marshall (R-Prince William) made the comments last week at a news conference calling for an end to state funding to Planned Parenthood. Calling the nonprofit group “Planned Barrenhood,” Marshall joined the Virginia Christian Alliance, several African American ministers and others who blamed the abortion provider for a host of social ills.
Marshall-gate has gone viral and has taken on a life of its own. Is this fair? Should someone who has been obsessive about women’s reproductive rights be let off the hook or do we continue to remind a Bob Marshall and those like him that this is 2010 and the women of Virginia are capable of making their own morally appropriate decisions. Most of us are amazed that some Republicans want smaller government and government out of people’s business –unless of course it is the bedroom. Why are there these inconsistencies?
Republicans need to stick to fixing the economy. That’s our biggest problem. They need to get out of the business of social engineering and culture warrioring. We don’t need war being declared on the EPA or Planned Parenthood or gay state employees. To quote one of my old favorites, “Its the economy, Stupid!”