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By Michelle Malkin  •  August 13, 2005 09:50 AM

Tigerhawk examines fallout from NARAL’s aborted smear ad against SCOTUS nominee John Roberts. The group’s communications director has “resigned”, and as Tigerhawk notes:

I find it hard to believe that NARAL’s communication director would quit in the teeth of a nomination battle without having been pushed out. It is a virtually certainty that NARAL gave him an incentive to leave, and perhaps an ultimatum.

I also find it hard to believe that the Roberts advertisement wasn’t vetted and approved by NARAL’s executive management, including Nancy Keenan. If she didn’t approve the ad before it ran, NARAL contributors should know that their president is not supervising the most visible work of the organization. If she did approve the ad, then she has sold David Seldin down the river (assuming that NARAL did, in fact, twist his arm). NARAL, obviously, does not believe that the captain is accountable for the ship.

Meantime, the woman who appeared in the ad, Emily Lyons, is defending her role and the content of the smear, which she said was “”confusing, but not false.”

The Washington Post reports that Democrat strategists are in whiny, chin-pulling mode:

Some Democratic operatives say their trouble is congenital. “The problem is our politically impractical insistence on always residing on the moral high ground,” said Jim Jordan, who was a longtime adviser to Kerry. “A large part of our ethos goes to what we perceive to be moral superiority and the sad truth is in politics that’s sometimes inconvenient.”

John Podhoretz responds here.

And NARAL’s abomination has prompted rebukes from the likes of the liberal Milwaukee Journal Sentinel editorial board, which condemns the “inexcusable attack” today:

Roberts never said he endorsed violent demonstrators at abortion clinics. In fact, he made it clear he was not trying to defend their conduct. He was merely interested, he said, in defending what he thought was “the proper interpretation” of the old statute. As it turned out, the Supreme Court agreed with him, 6-3.

So defamatory was the TV spot that some abortion-rights groups joined conservatives in rejecting it. As a result of these protests, NARAL pulled the ad Thursday night. That was a necessary but insufficient response. The ad was not merely the mother of all extravagant conclusions, not merely an outrageous insult with virtually no basis in fact; it was a smear undertaken by people who, at least in this instance, lost their moral compass. NARAL owes Roberts a fervent apology.

Right on.


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