Saturday, August 25, 2012

The most dangerous parts of the GOP's 2012 platform

AUGUST 22, 2012
By David Shuster / / @DavidShuster
If you've been raped and are trying to terminate your resulting unwanted pregnancy, you aren't going to find any support or sympathy in the Republican Party platform of 2012.
Likewise, if you are a woman and want to serve our nation in the military, or if you want to visit your same-sex partner in the hospital, or if you feel our government shouldn't build an 800-mile-long border fence that independent experts say would "waste money," the GOP 2012 platform is not pleasing.
This week, 112 Republican convention delegates have been meeting in Tampa to hammer out a 50-page platform document that will be embraced at next week's Republican convention. The right-wing committee has already approved extreme language on key social issues and has struck down proposals that might have appealed to Republican moderates.

So much for the big tent party. On Tuesday, and with little fanfare, the GOP platform committee adopted the same harsh anti-abortion language it included in the GOP platforms of 2004 and 2008.
The statement calls for passage of a constitutional amendment that would extend legal rights to the unborn, essentially banning abortion.
Watch Jennifer Granholm dig into the politics
underlying the GOP's extreme stance on a 
woman's right to choose.
The language includes no exceptions for rape or incest.
On gay rights, the platform committee not only rejected same-sex marriage, but also blocked a proposal to approve civil unions for same-sex couples. During part of the discussion, Romney adviser Jim Bopp called civil unions a "counterfeit marriage."
The gay bashing on civil unions was followed by the committee's refusal to include a line affirming the legal equality of same-sex couples. In other words, the GOP convention platform tacitly endorsed something the courts have said is illegal — discriminating against gay couples, whether it's housing, access to restaurants or even hospital visits. When it comes to the U.S. military, the GOP platform condemns what the committee called "social experimentation." The document calls for repealing policies that allow women to serve on the front lines.
Openly gay and lesbian service members should not be allowed to serve at all, according to the GOP platform.
The extreme, hard right positioning of the GOP platform also extends to immigration policies. The platform language calls for a border fence, a national E-Verify system that would make it difficult for undocumented workers to find employment and the termination of in-state tuition for illegal immigrants. The committee also approved a line criticizing the Justice Department for going to court to stop state immigration laws. There was no mention of the courts that have repeatedly declared some of the draconian laws, like the one in Arizona, to be unconstitutional. In a nod to libertarians, including Ron Paul, the GOP platform calls for an annual audit of the Federal Reserve.
And to reinforce the GOP's view of Washington, D.C., as a mere colony, the 2012 platform opposes D.C. statehood. Ironically though, although the GOP doesn't want D.C. residents to have a vote in Congress, the party platform does call for more guns in the city!
Tony Perkins, who recently blamed President Obama and the Southern Poverty Law Center for a shooting at the Washington headquarters of the Family Research Council, asked for and received a section that specifically calls on the D.C. City Council to expand gun rights. More guns in D.C., fewer rights for women, no rights for same-sex couples and a return to the 1950s — that's the GOP platform for 2012. Welcome to the Republican convention!

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