August 21, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) – Roe v. Wade is “the law of the land and we'll live with” it, Republican presidential hopeful John Kasich said on Wednesday.
The Ohio governor made the statement after getting back-to-back questions on abortion during a campaign event in New Hampshire.
One self-identified “lifelong libertarian” voter asked if he would uphold Roe, because he hopes to support a candidate who is “not a threat to a woman's right to control her own body.”
His question followed a woman who asked the governor about the “Holocaust” of abortion.
“I'm gonna get the two of you together,” Kasich joked.
He curtly addressed the man's question: “Obviously, it's the law of the land now, and we live with the law of the land.”
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That response drew concern from those in the pro-life movement. “Governor Kasich begs the question,” said Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser. “Pro-life voters, especially most Republican primary voters, do not accept Roe as the law of the land. Its assault on federal and states’ rights to protect unborn children claims over 3,000 unborn boys and girls and their mothers as victims every day.”
“Primary voters will benefit from understanding Governor Kasich’s policy agenda when it comes to abortion,” she continued. “Right now it appears he is satisfied with Roe’s status quo: abortion on-demand up until the moment of birth.”
Ed Whelan of NRO responded, “No, Governor Kasich, the Constitution (together with federal laws 'made in Pursuance thereof' and treaties) is the law of the land. A Supreme Court case that misreads the Constitution is not. Indeed, Roe is an affirmatively unconstitutional ruling that deserves no respect.”
The governor's comments came just days after Kasich said Republicans “focus too much” on abortion on CNN. The SBA List responded to that, as well.
“We are encouraging all presidential candidates to remain firm on this issue,” SBA spokeswoman Mallory Quigley said. “We ask [Gov. Kasich] to watch the series of Center for Medical Progress videos and reconsider that position.”
Kasich, who is surging in the polls in New Hampshire, made similar comments about the Supreme Court's gay “marriage” decision just before entering the 2016 race. “I believe in traditional marriage, but the Supreme Court has ruled, and it’s the law of the land, and we’ll abide by it,” Kasich told Face the Nation. “I think everybody needs to take a breath and see how this evolves.”
“The Supreme Court has no constitutional authority to create rights or, through the judicial process, enact law, or eviscerate the Tenth Amendment,” wrote Rob Schwarzwalder of the Family Research Center. “His view of the Court’s role is, if taken at face value, not just troubling but dangerous for the continuance of constitutional government.”
Kasich, a moderate Republican, has some critics among his state's pro-life voters. Members of the pro-life group Faith2Action chose to protest outside the Fox News presidential debate in Cleveland over Kasich's opposition to the state's “heatbeat” bill – a bill opposed by many in the pro-life movement on tactical and prudential grounds.
However, Ohio Right to Life strongly supports Kasich and his record of accomplishment.
Kasich has signed 16 pro-life laws since taking office in 2011, including the Viable Infants Protection Act, which banned abortions after 20 weeks. Another law required abortionists to have admitting privileges at a local hospital – and added that state hospitals can grant no such privileges.
As a result, the number of abortion facilities in Ohio has dropped from 16 to nine.
His most recent state budget funds Ohio's 140 women's pregnancy centers.
“As a pro-life state, we have to be working to hold abortion facilities accountable, while also promoting positive alternatives to the heartbreaking practice of abortion,” said Stephanie Ranade Krider, executive director of Ohio Right to Life.
The organization believes “Big Abortion fears John Kasich,” because he has enacted “a record number of pro-life laws.”
The abortion industry is unanimous in its opposition to Kasich. “He’s no moderate. He is an extremist,” said Kellie Copeland, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio.
Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards urged feminist voters, “Don’t be fooled by pundits who call John Kasich moderate. He’s enacted extreme measures in Ohio, and would do the same across the nation if given the chance.”