Why I love Dahlia Lithwick —
Long after the time had passed for male GOP officials to stop, to just stop, pretending they know or understand anything about female anatomy, reproductive organs, medical emergencies and basic preventative health care, they have continued to talk. They have continued to talk and talk and talk even when the massive blowback after the Dobbs decision proved it was an error; Kansas proved it was an error; and after the surprise election of Pat Ryan in a New York special election proved it was an error. Every time a Republican man opens his mouth to talk about women’s bodies, ten new female voters get their wings. Yet somehow, they cannot seem to stop themselves! …
… One analysis of the Kansas’ voter registration list showed that in the week after Dobbs, more than 70 percent of newly registered voters in that state were women. Those numbers, according to an Upshot analysis of 10 states with available voter registration data, show consistently higher registration for women after the Dobbs leak in May. As Jennifer Rubin recently noted, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that, “62 percent of women registering since Dobbs registered as Democrats, 15 percent as Republicans and that 54 percent were younger than 25.” And a Pew Research Center poll indicates that “a majority of registered voters (56 percent) say the issue of abortion will be very important in their midterm vote, up from 43 percent in March.” Tom Bonier, CEO Of TargetSmart recently posted on Twitter: “We are seeing early signs of what could lead to a huge increase in women voting in November. …This surge is young and female.” Both Mitch McConnell and RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel are panicking about the GOP’s odds in Congress, directly connected to fundraising around abortion.
Lithwick also discusses Sam Alito.
It is surely the very textbook definition of “privilege” to find yourself unbothered by protests, polling numbers, and voter registration data. Justice Samuel Alito actually laughed in the face of outraged females who called out the bad history, bad economics, and bad medicine in his leaked draft opinion—their complaints were numerous and well-founded, yet he didn’t change a thing.
Margaret Talbot has a long article about Alito at the New Yorker, Justice Alito’s Crusade Against a Secular America Isn’t Over. Alito is angry, Talbot says, and the article is a search for the source of the anger. It concludes, “In the end, Alito may be angry for the same reasons that many conservatives of his demographic are angry—because they find their values increasingly contested; because they feel less culturally authoritative than they once were; because they want to exclude whom they want to exclude, and resent it when others push back.”
Update: Paul Waldman writes that the great Republican abortion backtrack has begun.
Here are the new rules: First, stop saying you’re “100 percent pro-life.” That might be what Republican primary voters once wanted to hear, but now it’s radioactive.
Next, make the absurd and unsupportable claim that nothing has really changed when it comes to abortion. Instead, say that the realization of a decades-long Republican goal is less a legal revolution than an opportunity for some heartfelt, respectful conversation.
Then, stress your deep commitment to the welfare of all women. Stop talking about any particular pieces of legislation or constitutional amendments to ban abortion that you used to support. And if you have to say anything at all about policies and particulars, talk about the exceptions to abortion bans you support — even if you didn’t used to support them.
Finally, say Democrats are the real extremists by pretending that they support babies being aborted literally during delivery, something that, by the way, never happens.
Waldman says the award for fastest U-turn on abortion, so far, goes to Blake Masters of Arizona. Masters scrubbed his website of his positions on abortion.
In other news — Over the weekend a U.S. district court judge said she would hold a hearing on Donald Trump’s request for a special master to review the documents seized at Mar-a-Lago. Trump is still arguing a lot of it is “privileged.” Today the DoJ informed the judged that it had already reviewed all of the documents. An FBI “filter team” that routinely does this stuff has reviewed everything seized from Trump and determined which documents shouldn’t be part of a criminal investigation. This includes communications that might fall under lawyer-client privilege.