“ABC News’ Rick Klein Reports: Mitt Romney attended a fund-raising reception for Planned Parenthood in 1994 in conjunction with a $150 donation his wife made to the organization”—so when Romney says that he was “effectively pro-choice,” he really means it—he was very, very effective

“ABC News’ Rick Klein Reports: Mitt Romney attended a fund-raising reception for Planned Parenthood in 1994 in conjunction with a $150 donation his wife made to the organization — notwithstanding Romney’s contention that he had ‘no recollection’ of the circumstances under which his wife made gave money to the abortion-rights group,” writes Rick Klein in a Political Radar post titled Romney Attended Planned Parenthood Fundraiser in 1994

In the photograph obtained by ABC News, Romney and his wife, Ann, are shown in a yellow-and-white tent chatting with local political activists, including Nicki Nichols Gamble, who was then president and CEO of the Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts.

Nichols Gamble — whose back is the camera in the photograph — told ABC that the event was a Planned Parenthood fundraising “house party” in Cohasset, Mass., in June 1994. At the time, Romney, R-Mass., was locked in a tight Senate campaign with Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., and was touting his support for abortion rights.

That event, Nichols Gamble said, was the occasion where Ann Romney wrote her $150 check — drafted on a joint checking account she had with her husband — to Planned Parenthood of Massachusetts.

“They were both there, and I remember very well chatting with both of them, and talking about his support for the pro-choice agenda,” she said. “We talked about the fact that he was taking a pro-choice position on the issues, and we were very pleased about that.”

When asked by reporters earlier this year whether the former governor had ever donated money to Planned Parenthood, the Romney campaign said no. Aides subsequently conceded that Romney’s wife, Ann, wrote a $150 check to the group in 1994.

Romney spokesman Kevin Madden told ABC in May 2007 that Romney had “no recollection” of the circumstances under which the check was written, and stressed the fact that the donation was made by Ann Romney … etc.

Romney likes to say that he was in this era “effectively pro-choice,” a qualifier that suggests that at heart Romney was pro-life even as he pursued and defended pro-choice policy goals, yet another Romney-depiction of Romney’s divided self, yet another Romney dissociation of the real and the apparent, Romney’s favorite rhetorical trick.

Here is the problem for those of us for whom life is not an expedient but an imperative: Romney was apparently very effective at being pro-choice. Very, very effective.

yours &c.
dr. g.d.

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