What Motivates Republicans Rape Redefinition, Miscarriage Death Penalty Bills? Matt Lewis


Announcer: Welcome back to The David Pakman
Show. David: Welcome back to the show. Joining us
is Matt Lewis, senior contributor for The Daily Caller, editor of the new book “The
Quotable Rogue: The Ideals of Sarah Palin In Her Own Words”. Wow, our audience will
be scared of what her own words may actually be. Thanks for joining us, Matt. Matt Lewis: Hey, thank you for having me. David: I want to get your take from your side
of the political spectrum on what the motivation might be behind some of the proposals we’ve
seen from Republicans both in the U.S. House and also in State Houses. And specifically
the ones I’m talking about are John Boehner calling the redefinition of rape a high priority,
over 10, maybe even 14 attempts to repeal or defund the Barack Obama health care reform
bill, locally in different states, we’ve seen the proposition of maybe enabling the death
penalty for miscarriages, so on; you know all of these that I’m talking about. What
do you see as the root core of why are politicians motivated to propose these things? Lewis: I think on principle, actually. I think
that it’s fundamental beliefs in policy that conservatives believe will make a better America.
Some of it sounds bad, and that’s why in some cases they lose politically, like let’s take,
for example, the issue you brought up about redefining rape. Sounds horrible, and it’s
the kind of thing that liberals I think win on because it sounds bad and the liberal argument
really is the bumper sticker, and I can tell you the conservative argument, but it’s going
to take a couple minutes for me to do so. I actually happen to agree, or at least, you
know, philosophically understand the conservative argument, but it’s something that requires
a bit of explaining and nuance. And so, in politics, as you know, if you’re explaining,
you’re losing. David: Absolutely. And we have discussed on
the show previously, individually, with that particular issue, what is the point of view
from the right that is causing them to bring that up, but I tend to look at politics as
number one, I think every aspect of politics can be bought and sold, I seem to find corruption
everywhere I look even when I’m not looking very hard. So when I see things like this
being proposed, sometimes I wonder is it really that the people, the politicians getting behind
this personally morally feel like it’s correct, or is it maybe just the back end of a quid
pro quo from some socially conservative group that they’ve received money from? Is it something…
do they feel indebted to someone? Is it really just to create publicity? I mean, are those
things… what do you think about those possibilities? Lewis: Well, I think all of the above are
true. I think that in some cases, you have politicians who firmly believe in defending
life and this is part of that, as you know, if you went through, you know, intellectually
went through why some conservatives are making this argument. And I– and you know, I’ve
been in this business long enough to get to know some politicians and actually, you know,
not just at a meeting, but get to know them, maybe even have a couple drinks with them.
And so over time, you can tell who the kind of phonies are and who the true believers
are, and there really are politicians on the right and the left who really believe the
stuff that they fight for. On the other hand, there certainly are some
politicians who are supporting this agenda not because they believe in it, but because
other people believe in it, because some donors believe in it, because some of the voters
really believe in it. So obviously there are some people who firmly, you know, support
this, but yeah, but clearly, there are some politicians who are doing it for political
purposes. I think that’s true on both sides of the aisle on almost every issue. David: And then why is it worth even getting
involved with a lot of these proposals that so clearly are just not going to pass? Is
that side… is it political posturing? Is it to later say that they sponsored x, y,
and z bill? I mean, what’s the advantage? I don’t know that I get it. Lewis: Well, and there’s several… very complicated
stuff. I mean, you know, governing is messy and complex, and I think there’s several reasons
why. Number one, you have people who are maybe a little bit quixotic who don’t know that
things aren’t going to pass. And I think there are politicians and activists alike who fit
into that category, activists who demand you try to pass something even if it can’t pass
because they believe it’s right. I think that’s fine and noble. I also think that there is a strategic argument.
It’s like any negotiation, you always want to ask for more than you think you can get.
And so sometimes if you, you know, if I’m selling a car and I ask for $1000, I might
settle for $500. And so sometimes asking for a lot and being shot down and then coming
back for half a loaf can be a smart strategic move. Losing… David: That I get. Lewis: Yeah. David: That I get, but the idea of proposing
things which so clearly are… if they were to pass, right, they would really in many
of these cases put women in danger, I find them to be attacks on women, I find them to
be attacks on, you know, for all the talk about protecting unborn children, I find a
lot of these proposals actually go the opposite way. Isn’t there… is it responsible to,
as a starting point for a negotiation, propose something that puts women at risk? Lewis: Well, if you don’t mind, let me back
up and, you know, I know you said before that you guys have talked through this, but let
me, let me just as quickly as I can make what I think is the conservative argument for this.
So conservatives are being accused of wanting to redefine rape as only forcible rape, and
the reason why we’re in this predicament is, you know, first of all, a lot of people, a
lot of conservatives, but not just conservatives, are pro-life. And not only are they pro-life,
but they really believe in protecting the unborn, and they believe that abortion is
murder. The problem is that politically speaking,
passing legislation, there are always exceptions, and so some people are going to say well,
but what if the life of the mother is involved, or what if incest, and so for political reasons,
to get things passed, to compromise over the years, most pro-lifers and most politicians
at least have said well, we’re going to be in favor of outlawing abortion except in cases
of rape and incest. Now, the problem is, though, intellectually,
if you’re going to argue that abortion is always murder, how can you then, intellectually,
say but murder’s OK if it was rape, right? So we’ve got these compromises, and as I said,
politics is messy, and what happens is, you know, you get down to a point where you have
people who essentially could say, and remember, we just had a story a couple months ago, Julian
Assange, the Wikileaks guy who was accused of rape, and it was an interesting case. You
had… he had had consensual sex with a woman, and then I guess… I think later he had sex
with her again without using a condom. She called that rape. So some pro-lifers would
argue that well, if you’re going to allow an exception for rape, then you might as well
allow all abortions to be legal because any woman could… David: Yeah… Lewis: Any woman could say well, yeah, but
I was raped. So that’s the theory, at least. David: OK, but… let me, let’s… we… I
follow it. We have very limited time. The rebuttal, the obvious rebuttal, to me, to
that is that listen, we know that there is only a conviction on six percent of rapes
as a combination of difficulty in trying those cases, women being afraid to come forward,
so on and so forth. I believe that that redefinition that you point out, the logic behind from
the Republican side would only worsen that situation. And I wish we had more time, I
know that there’s two sides to it, but I do appreciate you coming on. Lewis: Sure. David: Matt Lewis, senior contributor for
The Daily Caller. Great to talk to you. Lewis: Good talking to you. Transcript provided by Alex Wickersham and
www.Subscriptorium.com. For transcripts, translations, captions, and subtitles, or for more information,
visit www.Subscriptorium.com, or contact Alex at [email protected]

11 Replies to “What Motivates Republicans Rape Redefinition, Miscarriage Death Penalty Bills? Matt Lewis”

  1. Good grief this guy keeps using "intellectual side of it"; "It requires explaining"; "It's complicated." I'm sorry but he assumes that if we don't agree with redefining rape, then we aren't smart enough to understand it. His arrogance is astounding. Don't insult our intelligence dude.

  2. What a deluded idiot. Oh yeah. Let's just pass a huge blanket bill that would potentially harm all rape victims and just trust us that we won't go after the others we didn't mean it to affect. Yeah Repubs want abortion GONE. And a slippery bill like this would kick that ball downhill and it wouldn't stop rolling until they had their way. If he isn't an idiot then he definitely thinks the rest of us are.

  3. You do not have to be a liberal to know that the redefining of rape does not benefit the victim. Maybe these shenanigans are a means to redirect attention away from certain issues. Oh come on…"politicians on the right and the left that believe what they are fighting for"? Any one who has followed the senate foreign relations committee or one of the many subcommittees knows this is all great Shakespearean drama. By the way…just because you "believe" in something does not make

  4. @EuphoricImpact make it right. I guess you forget that belief requires confidence that is not dependent on logic, fact or objectivity.

    You bet there is plenty of posturing going on…but my "Spidey senses" tell me there is more malefic action(s) occurring.

  5. I don't believe any of what this guy's saying. Republicans pretend to be pro-life because they don't want to fund abortions. It's not that abortions are wrong, but that they don't want any funding going anywhere other than into their collective pockets. That's why they're not just going after abortion issues, but medicare, social security, education — basically everything not helping the wealthy.

    …And the general population just lays on their collective backs and ignores it. BLAH!

  6. Republican / Democrat It isn't the position it's the man that's pushing this stuff. Throw them the heck out of office. Rep. Franklin is crazy. What he proposed with miscarriages and women. He is insane! He needs to go period!

  7. Abortions after the first three months are murder. It is murder in the first degree – no and's, if's, or but's about it . Actually, I would make the law designate the first two months as the time limit for abortions. There are plenty of adoption services available if the mother cannot afford to keep the baby, and two months is more than enough time to make a decision.

  8. @darkridr25 : Abortions before the first trimester should be free, as well as pregnancy tests and prenatal care if she wants to keep the baby. All of that should be free at any hospital as long as it is before the first trimester. After that time limit, abortions should be illegal.

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