Last night at the Republican National Convention, we heard Rep. Paul Ryan bash President Obama and his economic failures, and we listened as former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice debated foreign policy. The night before, Ann Romney delivered her “power to the women’s purse strings” speech and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie pretty much talked about how great he was. But what no one has talked about yet is women’s health and our reproductive rights. For something that’s been such a big deal lately with seemingly every male politician having something to say about our bodies, why is no one addressing this at the RNC?
Ironically enough, Republicans just approved their party platform yesterday that would ban all abortions. Democrats, of course, criticized the platform and pointed out how Romney and Ryan have different points of view on some of the details related to abortion. Like, Romney has said he would allow abortions in cases of rape, incest or when the mother’s life is threatened, while Ryan has only conceded if the woman’s life is in danger.
Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who is among the Democrats at the RNC, referred to the Republican’s stance on abortion “draconian” and “extreme.”
What you have seen from him is that he does one thing, he says another. He has taken one position after another, time and again you know, and you can’t have it both ways.
Not surprisingly, the platforms adopted by both parties at their conventions are “customarily ignored when it comes to actually governing,” according to the Huffington Post.
What’s also being ignored though is the very issues that have caused so much controversy over the last few months and the very thing women want to hear more about: our health care and our reproductive rights, including abortion, birth control and the plight of medical care like breast cancer screenings at Planned Parenthood. You would think after Republican Todd Akin‘s ignorant comment about “legitimate rape” that this party would at least address the issue–especially because Romney continues to trail Obama among female voters.
But even some conservative women campaigners, like the Young Guns Network, don’t want to discuss these issues anymore. Mary Ann Carter, policy director for the Young Guns Network says “social issues” like birth control and abortion are taking a back seat, according to the New York Times:
We don’t talk social issues. We talk about the economy. We talk about health care. We talk about energy.
The Times goes on to say that “even those who passionately agree (or disagree) with the new conservative party platform — calling for traditional marriage, public display of the Ten Commandments and a sweeping ban on abortion — did not seem to want to discuss the subject.”
And it seems like the Republicans, so far, agree.
So will Mitt Romney be smart and address women’s health and abortion tonight, or will he too steer clear? What do you think?