From the Sting to the House Floor

If you want a good example of the efficiency with which the conservative activist “community” can crack the whip on its congressional hirelings, check this out from The Hill’s Pete Kasperowicz:

Republican leaders have scheduled a vote on H.R. 3541, the Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act (PRENDA), under a suspension of House rules, which will require a two-thirds majority vote for passage. Suspension votes are usually reserved for non-controversial bills, but Republican leaders have occasionally used the process for bills that Democrats oppose, and the PRENDA bill appears to be one of those.

Yep, House Republicans are rushing a bill to the floor (where it will instantly die) to show their adament opposition to the phony threat of gender-selection abortion, as “revealed” by the phony sting an anti-choice group pulled off this very week. But it gets better:

Democratic opposition to the bill began with its original name, the Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass Prenatal Non-discrimination Act. Democrats argued in February that while the bill was named after these civil rights heroes, it has nothing to do with protecting civil rights….

The original name reflected that the bill also sought to ban abortions based on the race of the child. But Republicans agreed to strike that language from the bill as it was being considered in the Judiciary committee, and also changed the name of the bill.

So in other words, this phony bill was originally aimed at the phony threat of “genocide against African-Americans” that was the previous diversionary scare tactic of the anti-choicers. They’ll pick up any stick to bang the same old drum, and the fine solons of the Republican Party are marching to the beat.

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.