The Donald Trump phenomenon continues unabated. He seems at this point to be virtually indestructible, after taking on America’s Sweetheart, Megyn Kelly, and not only living to tell about it but maintaining his double-digit polling lead over the rest of the GOP field.
Many conservatives are enamored with Mr. Trump, more because of his style than his substance. He made his bones in this campaign on the issue of illegal immigration by adamantly refusing to budge even in the face of withering and blistering criticism. People agreed with him on the subject, and loved him for taking a stand on an issue they care about and refusing to retreat an inch. But most conservatives know little else about what he believes, other than that he believes he’s very rich and very smart.
(Even on immigration, he’s zigged and zagged. He told CNN he’d deport every illegal alien but then bring all the good ones back immediately.)
Social conservatives have many reasons to be uneasy with Mr. Trump, and one of them may prove to be a dealbreaker: Trump wants to continue funding Planned Parenthood.
Every single day, Planned Parenthood burns through $1.5 million in taxpayer funds while killing almost 1000 babies.
After telling Hugh Hewitt last week he would shut down government to defund this baby-butchering behemoth, yesterday in a dizzying turnabout he said he would fund most of it. Let’s just stop funding the bad parts, he says, but keep the taxpayer spigot running wide open for the good parts.
Here’s what Trump told CNN’s Chris Cuomo yesterday (emphasis mine):
“The problem that I have with Planned Parenthood is the abortion situation. It is like an abortion factory, frankly. And you can’t have it. And you just shouldn’t be funding it. That should not be funded by the government, and I feel strongly about that…
“What I would do when the time came, I’d look at the individual things they do, and maybe some of the individual things they do are good. I know a lot of the things are bad. But certainly the abortion aspect of it should not be funded by government, absolutely.
“I would look at the good aspects of [Planned Parenthood], and I would also look, because I’m sure they do some things properly and good and that are good for women, and I would look at that, and I would look at other aspects also. But we have to take care of women.”
But Mr. Trump, in plain point of fact there are no “good aspects” of Planned Parenthood, any more than there were “good aspects” of Josef Mengele’s ghoulish medical “research” on Jews.
Last night, he said much the same thing to Sean Hannity:
“Maybe unless they stop with the abortions, we don’t do the funding [for other services]. There are many ways to do that, because I’m totally against the abortion aspect, but I’ve had many women, I’ve had many Republican and conservative women come up and say Planned Parenthood serves a good function other than the [abortion] aspect.”
Likely due to lack of information and education, Trump seems to buy into the myth that abortions represent only 3 percent of what Planned Parenthood does. As Rich Lowry points out in the New York Post, this 3 percent figure is a “pathetic lie.” The kind of math you have to use to get that 3 percent figure “is a little like performing an abortion and giving a woman an aspirin, and saying only half of what you do is abortion.”
Even if the 3 percent figure were true, this would be an abysmal line of defense. Leave us alone because we only spend 3 percent of our time chopping babies up into pieces, fishing their livers out of dishes, and selling them to people who transplant them into rats? That’s their defense?
Well, killing iconic lions in Africa is only 3 percent of what American dentists do. How far would that line of defense get you? Hmmm?
The fundamental problem with Donald Trump is that he has no coherent moral or political worldview that I can detect. This makes him, to the average objective observer, dangerously unpredictable. He seems to make up public policy on social issues on the fly, launching them off the top of his head with little forethought, and then retooling them in mid-flight as he’s asked questions he quite literally never considered before.
Donald Trump has stayed at the top of the polls largely because America is hungry for a politically incorrect leader who speaks his mind and won’t back down. Unfortunately, Donald Trump isn’t that kind of leader with regard to Planned Parenthood. He’s bobbing and weaving. He was against funding before he was for it.
Sen. Ted Cruz said again yesterday that he would launch an effort to investigate, prosecute and defund Planned Parenthood his very first day in office. And everybody who heard him say it believes him. What will Donald Trump do with regard to Planned Parenthood his first day in office? At this point, it’s anybody’s guess.