As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Friday, January 23, 2009


It appears that there was only a temporary delay in reversing the global gag rule.

President Barack Obama plans to sign an executive order ending the ban on federal funds for international groups that promote or perform abortions, officials told The Associated Press on Friday. [...]

The policy bans U.S. taxpayer money, usually in the form of U.S. Agency for International Development funds, from going to international family planning groups that either offer abortions or provide information, counseling or referrals about abortion. It is also known as the "global gag rule," because it prohibits taxpayer funding for groups that even talk about abortion if there is an unplanned pregnancy.

Also known as the "Mexico City policy," it has been reinstated and then reversed by Republican and Democratic presidents since GOP President Ronald Reagan established it in 1984. President Bill Clinton ended the ban in 1993, but President George W. Bush re-instituted it in 2001 as one of his first acts in office.

The last several Presidents fiddled with this rule on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, while Obama waited a day. I guess he wanted to play down the symbolism, although putting it the day after doesn't really give you much distance.

Nevertheless, I'm very pleased by this, although the question of abortion access eventually must be addressed. So far, I'm giving Obama pretty high marks for his first week. Not to mention this, which is awesome.

The top congressional leaders from both parties gathered at the White House for a working discussion over the shape and size of President Barack Obama’s economic stimulus plan. The meeting was designed to promote bipartisanship.

But Obama showed that in an ideological debate, he’s not averse to using a jab.

Challenged by one Republican senator over the contents of the package, the new president, according to participants, replied: “I won.”

I think they call that an "accountability moment."

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