Will the GOP Shut Down the Government Over Abortion? Probably Not.

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
March 4 2011 2:15 PM

Will the GOP Shut Down the Government Over Abortion? Probably Not.

Charles Johnson rings alarms about Rep. Chris Smith, R-NJ:

A pro-life leader in the House says he and many other Republicans will vote against legislation to fund the government through September if a series of anti-abortion riders, which already passed the House, aren't included in the final bill.

"I'm going to push so hard to make sure those are all in there," Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ) told Public Radio International. "You can't back off, from a human rights perspective. If you do so you facilitate the demise of hundreds of thousands of children."

Smith said several Republicans would defect on the spending bill if the abortion riders are removed.

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This is what Chris Smith needs to say. Remember when Rep. Raul Grijalva, D-Ariz. said he'd vote against a health care bill that didn't include a public option? He didn't vote against it, and neither did the rest of the House progressives. This is different -- I fully expect Smith to vote against a bill that doesn't include more abortion bans -- but not that different. There are too many Republicans, like Rep. David Schweikert, R-Ariz., who are telling reporters and constituents that they are more interested in cutting spending this year than in staging policy fights that would force a shutdown.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 

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