March 25, 2005

HE HAS TO PLAY TO HIS BASE TO WIN ANYWAY:

Abortion consent issue may hurt other reforms (Andrew LaMar, 3/25/05, Contra Costa TIMES)

One of the first initiatives likely to qualify for November's anticipated special election is a measure that would require minors to notify their parents at least 48 hours prior to having an abortion.

The proposed state constitutional amendment is sure to set off an emotional debate among anti-abortion and abortion rights forces -- and put Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, a socially moderate Republican, in an awkward position. The measure could also overshadow the governor's agenda, which centers on more mundane matters, such as public pensions.

"For every voter who cares in an abstract way about pension reform, there are hundreds or thousands of Californians who care very deeply about an issue like this one," said Dan Schnur, a GOP strategist who served in former Gov. Pete Wilson's administration. "If the parental consent measure ends up qualifying, it could completely take over the special election debate."

For Schwarzenegger and his advisers, the measure adds another dimension to a complicated endgame over four "reform" proposals the governor has pushed since January. Schwarzenegger wants to win greater budgetary powers, redraw the state's legislative districts, pay teachers based on performance and move new public employees to less generous pension plans.


Over three-quarters of the public supports parental notification--how could this measure conceivably hurt his reform chances?

Posted by Orrin Judd at March 25, 2005 12:27 PM
Comments

That 75% is a national figure; does anyone know what the margin of support for parental notification is in California?

Posted by: Mike Morley at March 25, 2005 1:32 PM

Still a majority, I would wager. Even many liberals don't want a serious medical procedure done on their daughters without their knowledge.

Other people's daughters - okay - but not their own. They are liberals, after all.

Posted by: oswald booth czolgosz at March 25, 2005 1:41 PM

Mike,

Once you get outside some of the big cities, California's a surprisingly red state. As Oswald suggests above, if not 75 percent, I'll bet this amendment has majority support.

Posted by: Ed Driscoll at March 25, 2005 3:14 PM
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