The Washington Post today reports on the unusual spat among anti-abortion groups, apparently over the tactics of incrementalism versus absolutism, that spilled into public attacks against Focus on the Family founder James Dobson two weeks ago. Groups including Rev. Flip Benham’s Operation Rescue/Operation Save America and Colorado Right to Life placed a full-page ad in the Colorado Springs Gazette and the Washington Times demanding that Dobson “repent” for saying that a recent Supreme Court decision upholding the federal “Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act” would “protect children.”
Confusingly, a separate anti-abortion group also called Operation Rescue praised Dobson for pushing the ban, and Colorado Right to Life’s national parent group also said it was in “complete disagreement” with its state affiliate.
In the Post, Colorado Right to Life President Brian Rohrbough fired back. A Focus on the Family spokesman said they supported the ban “because we, and most pro-lifers, are sophisticated enough to know we’re not going to win a total victory all at once. We’re going to win piece by piece.” But Rohrbough said the decision “encourage[s] abortionists to find less shocking means to kill late-term babies.”
“What happened in the abortion world is that groups like National Right to Life, they’re really a wing of the Republican Party, and they’re not geared to push for personhood for an unborn child — they’re geared to getting Republicans elected,” he said. “So we’re seeing these ridiculous laws like the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban put forward, and then we’re deceived about what they really do.”