The press's favorite abortion questions usually have nothing to do with the 700,000-plus terminations of preborn babies' lives which take place each year in the U.S. (Note: The real figure is likely quite higher, because reporting is voluntary.) Especially when the person interviewed is a Republican or conservative, abortion questions focus heavily on the fewer than 1% of all abortions which are performed because of rape and incest. This is the equivalent of a news organization focusing all of its attention on a single house fire while an entire city a few miles away burns out of control.
2016 GOP presidential candidate Carly Fiorina had no interest in playing this game with Jake Tapper on Tuesday. In the process, she put on a clinic which should be mandatory viewing for any Republican or conservative who is in or wants to have a career in politics.
In this case, Tapper was attempting to maneuver Fiorina into publicly disagreeing with Wisconsin Governor and 2016 presidential candidate Scott Walker. The CNN reporter's flawed premise was his assumption that the house fire — the candidate's position on abortion in cases of rape and incest — is at least as important or more important than Democrats, leftists, their taxpayer-funded butchers, and Hillary Clinton in particular either proactively setting the entire city next door ablaze or, in Mrs. Clinton's case, cheering it on.
Transcript (bolds are mine):
JAKE TAPPER: Let's turn to the question of abortions. I know you want to talk about it. One of your opponents, Scott Walker, signed a law in Wisconsin this week which would prohibit abortions after 20 weeks of a pregnancy. On Twitter, HIllary Clinton said:
"Governor Walker signed dangerous abortion restrictions into law in Wisconsin — without exceptions for rape and incest. Extreme and unacceptable."
Walker retweeted her, and called her "out of touch with most Americans."
What's your position on this legislation, which does not allow exceptions for rape and incest?
FIORINA: Well, let's talk about the legislation that's sitting on the Senate floor right now, which does allow for those exceptions —
TAPPER: So you —
FIORINA: Let's also talk about, let's also talk about Hillary Clinton's position. Let’s also talk about Hillary Clinton’s position. Let’s talk about what extreme is. It’s not a life until it leaves the hospital. That’s Hillary Clinton’s position. It’s Hillary Clinton’s position that a 13-year-old girl needs her mother’s permission to go to a tanning salon or a tattoo, but not to get an abortion.
It's Hillary Clinton's position that women should not be permitted to look at an ultrasound before an abortion, and yet people who are trying to harvest body parts can use an ultrasound to make sure that those body parts are preserved so they can be sold. That, Jake, is extreme.
TAPPER: Just to clarify — you think there should be an exception for rape and incest?
FIORINA: I would really be delighted if for once the media would ask Hillary Clinton about the extremism of her position.
TAPPER: Well, let's —
FIORINA: It’s not a life, it's not a life until it leaves the hospital.
My position is very clear. It's been very clear and consistent ever since I ran for the Senate in 2010. Anyone can look it up. (Subtext: "You know the answer to the question, Jake, so why are you wasting everyone's time on the house fire while the city is ablaze?" — Ed.) Yes, I support exceptions.
But the majority of the American people now believe that abortion for any reason at all to be paid for by taxpayers after five months is an abomination. And this videotape, whether you're a pro-choice woman or a pro-life woman, this videotape is depraved. The casual nature with which these people are talking about fetuses, and tissue and apecimens. I tell you what, if a woman was looking at the ultrasound at the same stage of pregnancy, the doctor would not be talking about fetuses, or specimens or tissues. They would be saying, "Look at your baby's heartbeat. Look at your baby's eyes. Look at your baby's organs."
TAPPER: Carly Fiorina, thank you so much. Thank you for taking our questions.
Fiorina answered Tapper's question, but she made the larger points, and forcefully.
If Fiorina doesn't get the 2016 presidential or vice-presidential nomination — and those who haven't been taking her seriously need to start doing so — she should be hired immediately by whoever does so she can train them to face the hostile media. It's been many years since I've seen a GOP candidate handle the press in such a consistently deft and poised manner.
Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.