A representative for the left demonstrated the flagrant disregard for facts Friday night on CNN as a debate over the overturning of Roe v. Wade grew impassioned at the mention of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
During a segment on “CNN Tonight,” host Sara Sidner briefly lost control of a moderated discussion after a pro-life guest, reporter Carrie Sheffield, presented some solid facts pertaining to the release of the Supreme Court ruling on Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization that returns to right to regulate abortion to the individual states.
The dispute between Sheffield and former Rep. Abby Finkenauer (D-Iowa) began when the host asked about a possible federal ban on abortion.
“I personally prefer that,” Sheffield said, “but I know that people on the other side don’t prefer that. That is the beauty of federalism to say that people will migrate. They will vote with their feet at the end of the day.”
“So, as much as I would like to see a federal ban, I know that that is politically unlikely,” she went on. “And so that, I think, is the best compromise. In fact, Ruth Bader Ginsburg said -”
“Do not say her name tonight from your mouth,” Finkenauer viscerally rebuked the reporter.
Sheffield had made the well-reasoned and oft-cited argument for precedent-changing rulings noting how Plessy v. Ferguson was overturned by the ruling in Brown v. Board of Education and emphasized that the testimonies of recently appointed justices like Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh were not contradictory.
“Just because you understand or respect precedent does not mean that precedent should stand,” she stated.
Finkenauer had no tolerance for this argument and chided Sheffield as a backward-thinker by using one of the most extreme examples in support of abortion.
“You literally just cited a case from 1896 before women had the right to vote in this country. What happened today is absolutely horrifying. Every single person in this country, including you, who’s celebrating today about this overturning, you support a 12-year-old who’s been raped to have to actually carry her pregnancy to term,” the former lawmaker argued. “That is what you support. You support women dying in this country if they have an [ectopic] pregnancy because that is what will happen.”
Sheffield defended herself by saying, “You’re being very aggressive and putting words in my mouth. You’re being very disrespectful,” to which Finkenauer replied, “You taking away my rights and supporting it is disrespectful.”
Though it is unclear what quote from Justice Ginsburg Sheffield wished to employ in her argument, the most cited remarks from the late justice pertaining to Roe come from a 1992 lecture at New York University where she warned against major judicial shifts.
“Measure motions seem to me right, in the main, for constitutional as well as common law adjudication. Doctrinal limbs too swiftly shaped, experience teaches, may prove unstable,” Ginsburg said. “The most prominent example in recent decades is Roe v. Wade.”
“In essence, the court instructed Congress and state legislatures: rethink ancient positions on these questions. The ball, one might say, was tossed by the justices back into the legislators’ court, where the political forces of the day could operate,” the justice went on after she made the case that the Roe court had overreached in its decision.
Unfortunately for members of the left who have attempted to deify Ginsburg for her activism, that does not fly with the narrative that abortion should be argued based on feelings rather than facts.
Unless local press is asking @ChuckGrassley today if he backs a 12 year old being forced to carry a pregnancy from rape, or a woman with an etopic pregnancy dying, then you aren’t doing your job. This is the horrific, extreme “common sense” legislation he is supporting to be made https://t.co/gYvxWgpTi8
— Abby Finkenauer (@Abby4Iowa) June 24, 2022
For that reason, Finkenauer, who used the same argument on Twitter against a number of pro-life figures, could not allow Sheffield to make her case.
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