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Jeb Bush on Abortion

Republican FL Governor; V.P. prospect


OpEd: Jeb avoids extremism on women's issues

The 2012 election cycle has been characterized by an almost obsessive focus on women's reproductive rights, as "contraception" joined "abortion" in Republicans' list of dirty words. But, amid the chaos, there is still more than one party heavyweight that believes the party's position on women's medical decisions needs to catch up to the modern age.

The former governor of Florida has emerged as the GOP's voice of reason this election cycle. During an appearance on NBC'S "Meet the Press" on Sunday, Bush acknowledged that some conservatives' rather extreme rhetoric on some issues relating to women and minorities is understandably repelling those two groups from the Republican Party.

"I'm concerned about it over the long haul for sure. Our demographics are changing and we have to change not necessarily our core beliefs, but the tone of our message and the intensity of it, for sure," Bush said.

Source: Ashley Portero in International Business Times , Aug 28, 2012

Funded adoption counseling, but not abortion counseling

As governor, his entry into this arena came in his first year in office when he was called upon to support legislation permitting the state of Florida to offer a specialty license plate promoting the right-to-life side of the abortion controversy. The plate, containing the message "Choose Life," was available for $20 and the proceeds went to organizations that provided counseling and support to pregnant women "who are committed to placing their children up for adoption" but not to "any agency that is involved in or associated with abortion activities including counseling." Not surprisingly, the pro-choice advocates opposed the legislation. Bush's predecessor, Lawton Chiles, had vetoed the same measure on the grounds that it unnecessarily interjected religion into a public issue. Jeb sided with the pro-life side of this debate and signed the bill into law when it came to his desk.
Source: Aggressive Conservatism in Florida, by Robert Crew, p. 74 , Dec 11, 2009

Prevent use of public funds for stem cell research

Governor Bush took the side of the right-to-life constituency in a battle to prevent the use of public funds in support of stem cell research. While this stance put him at odds with his economic development supporters, he argued that this technology "takes a life to give a life," and opposed a ballot initiative that would have amended the state's constitution to provide $200 million over 10 years for this purpose. He also opposed actions to permit the Scripps Medical Institute to conduct research on this topic, even though he had committed $310 million of state-controlled federal funds to attract Scripps to Florida. At the same time he was attempting to lure the Burnham Institute of La Jolla, California, to build a lab in Florida, he also attached a condition that the Florida labs of this company, which was a leader in embryonic stem cell research, could work only on the noncontroversial stem cells from adults or umbilical cords.
Source: Aggressive Conservatism in Florida, by Robert Crew, p. 75 , Dec 11, 2009

Created divisive "Choose Life" license plates

Jeb injected religion into state government at seemingly every opportunity. He insisted that religious schools be allowed to take state money in the form of tuition vouchers, even though the Florida constitution prohibited the practice. He signed into law a divisive "Choose Life" Florida license plate that helps antiabortion groups raise money. He used state money to set up so-called "faith-based" prisons. He pushed through money to let his office fund antiabortion billboards along state highways.
Source: America's Next Bush, by S.V. Date, p.294-295 , Feb 15, 2007

Parental consent; clinic regulation; pro-life counseling

During his 1st term, he took all the positions Christian Conservatives would want--signing into law a "Choose Life" license plate, a parental consent of abortion bill, school voucher bills.

After winning reelection in 2002, though, it was no-holds-barred. His Department of Children and Families sought to bar a minor girl who'd had sex while in the state's protective custody from having an abortion. He pushed through a law strictly regulating abortion clinics, but no other comparable outpatient clinics. He got money in the budget for his office to finance antiabortion groups who counsel women to carry pregnancies to term.

The usual suspects complained about all of these efforts--the ACLU, pro-choice groups, the newspaper editorial boards. Jeb didn't care. If the Christian Right liked an idea, Jeb liked it.

Source: America's Next Bush, by S.V. Date, p.310 , Feb 15, 2007

Restrict abortions to incest, rape, & health

Source: 1998 Florida National Political Awareness Test , Jul 2, 1998

No need to teach about abortion if we have moral absolutes

Virtues are standards of behavior that are fixed & firm in any civilized society. Who would argue that fortitude, prudence, justice, temperance, discipline, work, responsibility, honesty, honor & compassion are not good things? Listen to William Bennett:
Forming good character in young people does not mean having to instruct them on thorny issues like abortion, creationism, homosexuality, or euthanasia, to name just a few. People of character can be conservative and good people can be liberal
Virtues are agreed-upon standards of right and wrong. Values, on the other hand, refer to a system of beliefs possessed by certain groups. Even Nazis and the worst street gangs have values. Since values focus on a position, they tend to accentuate our differences. Modern values often trump traditional values such as accountability, moderation, and deferred gratification. We have all seen the value of personal choice warring against the value of commitment to the family and children.
Source: Profiles in Character, by Jeb Bush & B.Yablonski, p. 36-37 , Nov 1, 1995

  • Click here for definitions & background information on Abortion.
  • Click here for VoteMatch responses by Jeb Bush.
  • Click here for AmericansElect.org quiz by Jeb Bush.
Other candidates on Abortion: Jeb Bush on other issues:
Former Presidents:
George W. Bush (R,2001-2009)
Bill Clinton (D,1993-2001)
George Bush Sr. (R,1989-1993)
Ronald Reagan (R,1981-1989)
Jimmy Carter (D,1977-1981)
Gerald Ford (R,1974-1977)
Richard Nixon (R,1969-1974)
Lyndon Johnson (D,1963-1969)
John F. Kennedy (D,1961-1963)

Former Contenders:
V.P.Al Gore
Pat Buchanan
V.P.Dick Cheney
Sen.Bob Dole
Ralph Nader
Gov.Sarah Palin

Political Thinkers:
Noam Chomsky
Milton Friedman
Arianna Huffington
Rush Limbaugh
Tea Party
Ayn Rand
Secy.Robert Reich
Donald Trump
Gov.Jesse Ventura
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Page last updated: Oct 09, 2013