February 9, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff is provoking speculation about her intentions following the appointment of a new pro-abortion women’s minister, a little over a year after almost losing the presidential election over the abortion issue.
Eleonora Menicucci, a Labor Party stalwart and personal friend of Rousseff, shared a prison cell with the now-president during their imprisonment under Brazil’s military regime in the 1970s, when they were arrested for their involvement in terrorist and revolutionary activities as socialist militants.
Menicucci also shares Rousseff’s and the Labor Party’s support the for the legalization of abortion, a position that Rousseff was forced to abandon during the presidential elections of 2010, when her coronation by outgoing president Luiz Lula was almost thwarted by a campaign against her by pro-life and pro-family Christians. Rousseff went on to win the elections after signing a pledge not to initiate abortionist or homosexualist legislation.
Rousseff has remained silent on the abortion issue since her election, but the appointment of Menicucci has raised suspicions that her pro-abortion views will not remain dormant during her administration. Although her predecessor in the Secretariat of Women’s Policy, Iriny Lopes, also had a history of pro-abortion posturing, Menicucci has admitted to the Folho de Sao Paulo newspaper that she has had two abortions herself, an apparent flouting of Brazil’s prohibition of all abortions except in cases of rape.
She has also acknowledged her own sexual ambiguity, stating in a 2007 interview, “I have relationships with men and women and I am very proud of my daughter, who is gay and who had a child by artificial insemination.”
Menicucci says that she regards the abortion issue as one belonging to the legislature rather than the executive, but is defiant in her loyalty to the abortionist position, refusing to distance herself from her past statements.
“My personal position from today on it is not important. I already gave my personal position in interviews, above all in the 70s, 80s, and 90s, when feminism was required to take positions. I do not repent of it. It’s my history,” she recently told the press. She also offered a defense of the legalized killing of the unborn, echoing the claims of abortion rights advocates that the deadly procedure is necessary for “public health.”
“As a hygienist, I have to say that it (abortion) is an issue of public health. It isn’t an ideological issue,” said Menicucci. “No one in a position of authority who has any sense, who hears the numbers, does not admit that women continue to die as a consequence of abortion.”
Indignation, but little surprise
President Dilma Rousseff’s selection of Menicucci was met with indignation but little surprise on the part of Brazilian conservatives and pro-lifers.
Widely-read conservative columnist Reinaldo Azevedo blogged that Rousseff had “fooled” evangelical leaders with her promise not to support the abortionist and homosexual agendas, writing that “it was only a tactic” and adding, “Now, it is a question of fooling the society with proselytism. Dilma chose for the post a militant of the cause.”
“President Dilma has nominated a Secretary of Women’s Policy (SPA) in her image and likeness,” pro-life leader Fr. Luiz Lodi da Cruz told LifeSiteNews, adding that she is “an extreme feminist,” and “ardent defender of the discrimination of abortion” who has “practiced lesbianism.”
“The nomination of Eleonora, who will take possession on Friday, is a signal of the coherence of the president,” said Lodi. “Belonging to a party that is committed to abortion (the Labor Party), Dilma was constrained to present herself as a ‘Catholic,’ defender of ‘life’ and even a devotee of ‘Our Lady of Aparecida,’ so as not to lose the 2010 elections. Now, upon nominating her secretary, with the status of of Minister of State, Dilma does justice to her pro-abortion and anti-family tradition.”