It certainly took long enough, but it now seems like the horrific trial of Kermit Gosnell is finally getting the media attention it deserves.
Yesterday, Fox News’ Ed Henry pressed Jay Carney on whether or not the President would support “common sense” abortion reform to help thwart such atrocities. Meanwhile, during an interview that aired on the TODAY show this morning, President Obama provided comments of his own (sort of).
“Wow. They just asked the President about the Gosnell trial. That is the abortion killer – the largest serial killer in American history,” Glenn said on radio this morning.
NBC News’ Savannah Guthrie asked the President whether or not he was aware of the trial and what the trial might mean for the national abortion conversation. He answer was dodgy, to say the least:
OBAMA: Well, I’m familiar with it. I can’t comment on it because it’s an active trial. What I can say is this: I think President Clinton said it pretty well when he said, ‘Abortion should be safe, legal and rare.’ If an individual carrying out an abortion, operating a clinic or doing anything else is violating medical ethics, violating the law, then they should be prosecuted.
“Yeah, Ed Henry pushed that point a little bit with Jay Carney yesterday,” Pat continued. “It’s pretty compelling.”
After outlining the general details of the case, Henry asked Carney if the White House had any reaction to the trial. Much like the President, Carney’s response was dubious.
CARNEY: I’ll say two things. One, the president is aware of this. Two, the president does not and cannot take a position on an ongoing trial, so I won’t as well. Certainly the things you hear and read about this case are unsettling, but I cannot comment further on an ongoing legal proceeding,
Henry, however, was not willing to let Carney off so easily.
HENRY: The president, as a state senator in 2003, voted against a bill that would provide medical care, as I understand, to babies who would be born after a botched abortion like this. The president at the time said he couldn't support it as a state senator because he felt like any doctor in that situation would take care of a child. When you hear this kind of evidence, it suggests there's at least one doctor who apparently did not. I understand you can't deal with the deliberation of the case. But is there some legislative solution, or at least a conversation that needs to happen in Washington because on guns you were just saying we need common-sense reform. We need to save lives. In this case, do we need to be saving lives as well?
CARNEY: Well, again, you're relating it to a case that I can't comment on and the president can't comment on. I would simply say that the president's position on choice is very clear. His position on the basic principle that, as President Clinton said, abortions ought to be safe, legal and rare is very clear. I just don't have comment that could shed light on this specific case.
HENRY: Just the last one on this then. Is there any sort of common-sense reform though without restricting abortion rights? Does the White House see any line in there where if there is a baby that is still alive, they should be taken care of without restricting abortion rights?
CARNEY: You're asking for hypotheticals about legislation or proposed legislation that I haven't seen, so it's hard for me to comment on it.
“[Henry] worded it brilliantly because it does come down to – it's not just bringing up his stance, but it’s going into the fact of common sense laws,” Stu said. “You're telling me it's not a common sense law to take care of a baby once it's born?”
“He's just pulling that out, just like the President,” Glenn said. “He just happened to go to that same comment, and also say that that comment originally came from President Bill Clinton. That’s weird… it's almost like that was a coordinated line.”
While it would make sense that the president cannot comment on an ongoing investigation for fear of interfering with the case, history shows President Obama’s policy has not been consistent. Remember this statement in the immediate wake of Trayvon Martin’s death:
OBAMA: If I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon.
“I'm glad to see that he has learned his lesson,” Glenn said of the President. “On Monday's bombing, on the abortion clinic, on the Fort Hood shooting, and I think on Benghazi – he's learned his lesson, selectively, to not get involved in an ongoing trial. On an ongoing investigation or trial, he is out – selectively.”