David Frum makes an interesting point:
May I suggest to my prolife friends that they are looking up a blind alley when they argue over the real inner views of the candidates with respect to abortion?
The single most important question pro-life Republicans need to ask themselves is this:
What kind of judges and justices would the various candidates nominate, given the likelihood that they will face a Democratic majority Senate? To my mind, this is less a question about abortion than it is a question about congressional relations.
Let’s stipulate that John McCain is a sincere, principled opponent of abortion. Do we think he’s likely to nominate a justice like Samuel Alito in the face of quiet warnings from his good friends Ted Kennedy and John Biden? Or do we think that McCain’s habits of senatorial comity will trump his pro-life convictions? My guess: the latter.
Now let’s stipulate that Rudy Giuliani would personally prefer to see Roe v. Wade remain the law of the land. Still, for his own reasons – national security, executive authority – he prefers judges like Alito, who incidentally disagree with him on Roe. Do you think he’s likely to be scared off his choice by growlings from the Senate?
I’d add that McCain may very well care less about striking down Roe v. Wade than about upholding McConnell v. FEC — that is, McCain might be disinclined to nominate any judge who is likely to protect First Amendment rights at the expense of campaign finance “reform,” and thus McCain’s nominees may be more likely to disappoint in other areas.