Read yet about the latest in anti-abortion activity, the proposed federal legislation to permit public funding of abortions only in cases of forcible rape? Currently abortions for pregnancies in all cases of incest and rape are exempt from the law banning public support of abortions.
Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz has it right when she calls the legislation itself a violent act against women and outrageous.
But the local angle is the presence of Rep. Mike Ross among a handful of a Democrats who've joined the more than 100 Republican sponsors of this anti-woman legislation. Ross is often credited with a keen sense of the wind direction in his legislative district. He's wrong here. I just don't believe that, for example, the people of the 4th District opposed public support for medical treatment for that retarded teen who was impregnated by her father a few years back. But, of course, Mike Huckabee made a federal case out of denying Medicaid coverage to that rape victim and they say he's the Republican frontrunner for president in 2012 (a bid he apparently discussed recently on an Arkansas duck hunt). Underestimating the Arkansas voter has never seemed to hurt Mike Ross. You certainly should never take a bet that underestimates Mike Ross' shameless opportunism.
When I last checked, only Rick Crawford among the three Arkansas Republican congressmen was a co-sponsor with Ross. That's a rare step in the right direction for Rep. Tim Griffin, whose constituency could be expected to tilt even more pro-choice than average.