Terrorism and Abortion and Judges, Oh My!

On today’s edition of “The 700 Club,” Pat Robertson lamented that the Republicans are facing very real difficulties in getting their right-wing base motivated for the upcoming elections, because unlike previous elections, the Right can’t just focus on “judges, judges, judges, judges” this time around and is therefore growing “dispirited” by things like the war in Iraq and growing deficits. [View the video highlight: Broadband or Dial-Up.] 

Given that “judges, judges, judges, judges” has been the primary mobilization strategy for the GOP and the Right for years, it is not surprising that judicial activists such as Leonard Leo of the Federalist Society are desperately trying to tie every issue to judges in any way they can, leading him to send out a memo to “Catholic leaders” ostensibly about national security but couched entirely in not-so-subtle “we need pro-life judges” rhetoric

Catholics, like other segments of the population, are not of one mind about the war in Iraq (I happen to be supportive, but know others in our Catholic communities who are not). But, there is one thing that all of us can agree upon respecting the broader war on terror: there is real value to efforts that identify and frustrate domestic threats and thereby prevent the loss of innocent life. No one can reasonably dispute, for example, that the resources our government expends to collect intelligence and data in order to break up a terror plot is premised on the individual dignity and worth of every human person. Counter-terrorism efforts protect all of us, regardless of our race, sex, or economic standing.

Today, when the Senate approved the confirmation of another Federal appeals judge, we were reminded of how important the judges battle is to a war on terror effort that successfully protects innocent human life.

We need to remind our friends and family, as they reflect upon the stakes in the upcoming Congressional elections, that we need a Senate that understands the way in which counter-terrorism can advance human dignity, and that understands the importance of confirming judges who won’t frustrate those efforts at protecting innocent human life because of their own political views about the war on terror.

Terrorism, abortion, and judges – Leo managed to tie all three issues together in this one memo.  If he had tried a little harder, he probably could have crammed in some ominous warning about homosexuality and hit for the right-wing cycle.