Ms. Smith, a 38-year-old fiscal conservative and former media commentator, beat out Mark Dyrholm. A former Reform party organizer and social conservative, he complained bitterly during the leadership race that Ms. Smith was too socially liberal to lead the Wildrose Alliance because of her support for gay marriage and pro-choice abortion stance.
I was asked about her position on abortion via Facebook. Her position and her opponent’s were virtually the same, except the rhetoric around it was different, so far as I could tell. I believe she would defund abortion, as that takes it out of the state’s hands making abortion into a true choice, which is about all anyone can do/hope for these days. Do I think she’s misguided for supporting abortion in the first place as an idea? Absolutely–and would tell her so. But this election did not, in the end, come down to abortion, and I had it on the word of friends I trust (and staunchly pro-life friends at that) that had the Drysholm campaign won it would not have spelled good things for the Wildrose Party or Alberta.
So I say congratulations, Danielle!
Brigitte would like to join Andrea: I know and like Danielle Smith, and I’m glad she won. I have never discussed abortion with her (the subject doesn’t always naturally come up, you know, especially not while at a conference on entrepreneurship and liberty). I understand she’s pro-choice. A lot of people are. But she’s a smart compassionate woman. Maybe one day she’ll change her mind – or not. That’s life. In the meantime, I for once am please to support her plan to defund abortion.
I watched Amazing Grace last night (I immediately became Benedict Cumberbatch’s biggest fan). It’s a lovely film. And also very much inspirational (no, I don’t mean in the religious sense, although it is very much present). I was particularly struck by the way the abolitionists around William Wilberforce, after many long disappointing years making no progress at all, eventually decided to go with a slightly devious approach. They made it possible for privateers to attacks ships flying a flag of convenience and they made the bill look as though it were primarily aimed at French ships even though it also included slave ships.
I’m a little fuzzy on the details of how that worked, but I sure got the main point: By making it harder and more expensive for slave traders to do business, the abolitionists effectively helped reduce the size of the slave trade. Eventually, they were able to pass a straightforward bill abolishing the slave trade.
Back to Danielle Smith and abortion. No, abortion isn’t the same as slavery. And Danielle Smith is no William Wilberforce. But her idea to defund abortion (and I don’t care one bit why she wants to defund abortion) is a very good first step towards reducing the number of abortions in this country. She will find me among her most enthusiastic supporters.