A Republican candidate for House District 14 (northwest of Missoula) Mark French, has surprised some voters for coming out in strong support of abortion, with an interesting caveat attached. French, who has run for various offices on-and-off for nearly a decade, is running against the incumbent, Denley Loge (Saint Regis).
Loge, no conservative himself, has an F-rating from Legistats on party loyalty. However, Loge maintains a 100% rating from the Montana Family Foundation, which usually denotes a pro-life position taken from a combination of voting records and questionnaire answers.
With a questionnaire from the National Pro-Life Alliance in his hands, French said on his Facebook page, “I want to emphasize my support of the fourth amendment. People are free to choose to abort if they want to. As a legislator I can only legislate what happens out in the public.”
He continued, “The fourth amendment allows people to do whatever they choose behind their threshold. God is plenty capable of dealing with people behind their threshold.He will do a better job than Governement [sic]. If a legislator is going to honor the fourth amendment he limits his jurisdiction to the threshold of individual homes.”
The Montana Daily Gazette sent a question to French asking if he was approving of child molestation, spousal abuse, or bestiality if it happens beyond the ‘threshold’ of closed doors, but he did not respond by the time of publication.
It is doubtful that French would be consistent in applying Fourth Amendment privileges to violent crimes against already-born individuals. The question of ethics seems to be one of biology. Is an unborn person a human being or aren’t they?
French then goes on to reference the Almighty, saying, “God can deal with what goes on behind those thresholds.”
However, Jesus said, “If anyone causes one of these little ones–those who believe in me–to stumble, it would be better for them if a large millstone were hung around their neck and they were thrown into the sea.” That would seem to be a more accurate reflection of Judeo-Christian beliefs which have a tendency to resonate more with Republican voters.
The Fourth Amendment reads, “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”
The 1973 Supreme Court case, Roe V. Wade, claimed that government authorities had no right to know whether or not an abortion had been committed, largely based upon an interpretation that the act was covered under the right to privacy. The decision remains to be one of the most hotly contested in United States history for what many perceive to be a gross act of judicial activism that reinterprets the Constitution to mean that which it did not intend. The Fourth Amendment is not interpreted similarly in other cases of violence, like rape or murder, against others.
Confusingly, French went on to add, “Further, the state should not be sponsoring abortion. Abortion is clearly wrong. The state should not be licensing abortion clinics.”
One wonders why someone should be able to do that which is “clearly wrong” under Fourth Amendment protections of privacy.
French’s position seems to straddle the fence of ethics, claiming that the state should not license abortuaries but that the state should not prosecute abortionists. It is as schizophrenic as it is contradictory. Failing to criminalize and prosecute unlicensed abortion clinics or unauthorized abortions is, for lack of a better term, a tacit endorsement of them.
Between Loge’s abysmal party loyalty and French’s overt and vocal support of infanticide, it may leave HD14 voters with little choice for real conservatism.