I nominate this Martha Coakley attack ad as the standard against which all other deplorable, malicious and blatantly dishonest campaign garbage should be measured.
The ad refers to a 2005 Massachusetts bill requiring ERs to offer a morning after (abortion) pill to all rape victims. Scott Brown, Coakley's opponent for the Massachusetts senate seat made vacant by Ted Kennedy's death, had proposed a conscience clause to be added to the bill. His amendment would have allowed health care providers with religious objections to deny the pill to a rape victim. The amendment still required the provider invoking the clause to transport the victim free of charge to another facility to adminster the pill. The amendment was defeated but Brown voted for the bill anyway.
It gets worse. The Senate health care bill, which Coakley supports, contains a similar conscience clause.
(3) PROVIDER CONSCIENCE PROTECTIONS. No individual health care provider or
health care facility may be discriminated against because of a willingness or an unwillingness, if doing so is contrary to the religious or moral beliefs of the provider or facility, to provide, pay for, provide coverage of, or refer for abortions.
Ted Kennedy himself supported such language to be included in any health care package as he wrote in a letter to Pope Benedict.
"I believe in a conscience protection for Catholics in the health field and I'll continue to advocate for it as my colleagues in the Senate and I work to develop an overall national health policy that guarantees health care for everyone."
Yet Scott Brown's advocacy for conscience protection is tantamount to "turning away rape victims" - making it sound as if he supported the denial of any treatment for all rape victims. Disgraceful.
Shame on Coakley for countenancing the ad and for her continuing failure to rescind it. This amoral behavior is consistent with her handling of the Amirault sexual assault case when she was a Massachusetts District Attorney in 2001. Dorothy Rabinowitz (WSJ) provides the details.
Coakley's lousy politics aside, the ad and her role in the Amirault case are reasons enough to hope for her ignominious upset defeat at the hands of Scott Brown in tomorrow's special election.
Red Sox fans, of course, have one other reason as stated by Shannen Coffin (NRO).
Screwing up who Curt Schilling is isn't just grounds for losing a Senate race; it's ground for expulsion from the Bay State. If Massachusetts had the death penalty, it would probably qualify for that too. But then, this is Massachusetts, so that's probably wishful thinking on both accounts.
Update (6 PM) Here's a funny comment on an NRO blog about Coffin's remarks. Re: Why Schilling Matters [Stephen Spruiell]
Brace yourself, Shannen, for the inevitable Think Progress/Media Matters headline, "NRO Contributor: Coakley Should 'Probably' be Put to Death for Telling Admittedly Dry Schilling Joke." I would bet serious money that someone in the Soros-verse has teed it up as a draft post.
I would add that if Coakley's confusion was actually a joke, it was bone dry.