Thursday, April 21, 2011

40 - 40 - 20 revisited

Con MP and anti-abortion crusader Brad Trost, who lists being a member of the cross-party Pro-Life Caucus as one of his duties as an MP on his website, addressed the Saskatchewan Pro-Life Association’s annual convention on Saturday and thanked its members for their help in killing off federal funding for Planned Parenthood.
“Let me just tell you, and I cannot tell you specifically how we used it, but those petitions were very, very useful and they were part of what we used to defund Planned Parenthood because it has been absolute disgrace that that organization and several others like it have been receiving one penny of Canadian taxpayers dollars."
Planned Parenthood has been waiting over a year to find out whether the Con's official program defunder, Bev Oda, would renew PP's decades old funding and now Trost has let the cat out of the bag.
Harper spokesy Dimitri Soudas hastily convened a 1am presser to distance Harper from Trost, blowing Trost off as a mere uninformed "backbencher", but as Cathie points out : Trost has been right before.
Soudas :
Asked repeatedly whether allowing access to abortion was part of the government’s funding criteria, Soudas replied: “No, it does not.”
He also repeated the Harper government’s often stated position that it would not re-open the debate on abortion."
Well of course with Harper seeking a majority, he doesn't want to reopen the debate but he doesn't need to, does he? Defunding it, with the repeated help of the Blue Dog Libs, is working just fine as an alternative.

A year ago the Libs tried to smoke out the Cons on contraception and abortion by introducing a Liberal motion in the House to include a broader range of family planning programs in a maternal health initiative for developing countries. It was defeated 144-138 when four Libs voted against it, two abstained, and 12 missed the vote altogether.

So it's a bit much that it's the Liberal party who broke the news about Trost's shenanigans at the annual Pro-Life bunfest, just because the Liberals having 25% 17% anti-abortion MPs is better than the Cons 69%  66%
Let's have another look at the 40 - 40 - 20 support for pro-choice in our current government.
[Update : See corrected chart for the election below this one]

From Choice Joyce, updated December 2010 :

while Sixth Estate has a 2009  list of suspected Pro-life Caucus members, based on their voting records and public statements. Suspected. Because membership in the Pro-Life Caucus is a government secret.

At least they're more upfront about it in the US, where bills to defund Planned Parenthood are currently pending in Wisconsin, New Hampshire, Minnesota, Indiana, North Carolina, and the District of Columbia.

More : Dammit Janet, Dr. Dawg. Dammit Janet again

Update : Courtesy of Choice Joyce at ARCC : an updated list of anti-choice MPs for this election.

Good news is :  that 40 - 40 - 20 is now updated to all-party totals of 48.5% Prochoice - 36% Antichoice - 16% Unknown,
with 17% of the Libs and 66% of Cons identifying as anti-choice.

Well that's better but 66% is still a horrific percentage for the governing party of Canada.

Joyce reminds the 36% of antichoicers from both parties is a 'conservative' estimate, and her research bears this out.
For instance, voting for some version of fetus rights doesn't automatically get an MP onto the chart because maybe the candidate is pro-choice but it was a whipped vote, or they are anti-choice personally but have stated they would not vote against reproductive rights.

Check out her list of MPs and their voting record before you vote.



choice joyce said...

Thanks Alison! Note that we've just thoroughly reviewed and updated the list for this election:

The numbers are a bit less than before, because we like to err on the conservative (double small c?)side according to actual evidence, so some of the Unknowns are undoubtedly anti-choice too, we just don't have enough of a record to go by.

Alison said...

Many thanks, Joyce, I've updated accordingly and will forward.

So now slightly less than half the MPs in Parliament admit to being pro-choice. Good to know.

Sixth Estate said...

To be fair, it's not so much a government secret as an MP secret. The caucus isn't an official Tory one -- there are a small handful of Liberals in it, too.

Anonymous said...

Sixth Estate, I think the Liberals hypocrisy of outing and publicly condemning Trost while maintaining members in the ProLife Caucus and allowing prochoice measures to fail in the House is rather the point of the post.


Blog Archive