President Obama Could Damage Pro-Life Efforts With Gregg Commerce Pick

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jan 29, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

President Obama Could Damage Pro-Life Efforts With Gregg Commerce Pick

by Steven Ertelt Editor
January 29
, 2009

Washington, DC ( — The big news on Capitol Hill on Friday is that President Barack Obama is considering appointing pro-life Sen. Judd Gregg of New Hampshire as his Commerce Secretary. While it may appear that Obama is showing common ground on abortion, the move could make it very difficult for pro-life advocates.

The pro-life movement is very concerned about the potential for passage of the Freedom of Choice Act, a bill that would make unlimited abortions the national law and overturn 36 years worth of pro-life state laws that are reducing abortions.

Should Gregg accept a potential appointment, pro-abortion New Hampshire Gov. John Lynch would appoint his replacement.

With a House and Senate controlled by abortion advocates, the only potential for stopping the FOCA bill could be a filibuster by pro-life senators. If Senator Gregg leaves the Senate and is replaced by a pro-abortion lawmaker, that ability to hold up the pro-abortion bill becomes more complicated.

Republican lawmakers in Congress and New Hampshire are urging Senator Gregg to stay in the Senate, though their efforts may be made more difficult by the fact that the senator has what most observers believe is a very difficult re-election bid in 2010.

Sen. Jon Kyl, a pro-life Republican from Arizona, noticed how Obama’s crafty selection of Gregg could undermine pro-life filibuster possibilities and he told the new web site Politico that a Gregg nomination would be a "sneaky" way to remove a senator from the chamber.

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs cautioned on Friday that Obama has yet to make an official decision but observers say Gregg will likely accept the administration post if the president offers it to him.

Some lawmakers are hoping to convince Governor Lynch to appoint a Republican to Gregg’s seat if he accepts the nomination, though there is no guarantee the replacement would be pro-life.

“If we were to reduce the number of Republicans by one, that would make a big difference,” Sen. Lamar Alexander, a Tennessee Republican, explained to Politico. “I like the idea of 41 Republican senators a lot better than 40. And I like the idea of Judd Gregg being in the United States Senate rather than him not being.”

The pro-life movement does as well.

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