Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Bogus ad begins character assasination attack on Roberts

John Hinderaker at POWER LINE has the lowdown on a despicable anti-Roberts media campaign now underway:

As a close observer of the political scene, I suppose I should be shock-proof. But what NARAL did today shocked me. It began running an anti-John Roberts television ad featuring Emily Lyons, victim of a 1998 bombing of an abortion clinic in Alabama that was carried out by Eric Rudolph. The ad goes as follows:

Announcer: "Seven years ago a bomb destroyed a woman's health clinic In Birmingham, Alabama."

Lyons: ""The bomb ripped my clinic. I almost lost my life. I will never be the same."

Announcer: ""Supreme Court nominee John Roberts filed court briefs supporting violent fringe groups and a convicted clinic bomber."

Lyons: "I am determined to stop this violence, so I'm speaking out."

It is not easy to fit so many lies and distortions into a 30-second commercial. The case referred to by NARAL is Bray v. Alexandria Clinic; you can read the Supreme Court's opinion here. The Bray case was decided in 1993; John Roberts was one of six Justice Department lawyers who signed an amicus brief on behalf of the federal government, and he argued the case for the government. You can read the government's brief here.

After providing, as usual, links to the original source material, POWER LINE discusses in detail the somewhat technical legal aspects of the case, and reaches the following conclusion. Which is, I might add, correct:

So NARAL misrepresents the Bray case in every particular. Roberts didn't "support violent fringe groups" or a "convicted clinic bomber." He supported the federal government's position on a specific question of law--correctly, as the Court found. NARAL's reference to a "convicted clinic bomber" is especially outrageous. The Bray case had nothing to do with a bombing by Eric Rudolph or anyone else, and Rudolph attacked the Birmingham clinic--the bombing that is referred to in the NARAL ad--eight years after Roberts wrote the brief on the Section 1985(3) issues.

For NARAL to suggest that John Roberts has ever done anything to support violence against abortion clinics (or anything else) is so far outside the bounds of civilized debate that one can hope that, even in today's far-gone Democratic Party, sane voices will be raised to denounce NARAL's advertising campaign.

Unfortunately, I’d bet those “sane voices” denouncing this disgusting slanderous crap will be few and far between. Remember, you are talking about the party that plopped Michael Moore down in a box of honor at its convention. The party that still thinks Dan Rather is a “journalist” and Jimmy Carter is a “statesman”. I wouldn’t count too much on a whole lot of sanity out of that crowd. This is the party that never once denounced, or even debated, any of the slanderous nonsensical Bush-bashing babblings of the 2004 campaign.

An election which, by the way, Bush won…by a majority vote.

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