Thursday, May 06, 2010

Narrow That Message, Bev

The "Eye of the Needle Award" goes to Bev Oda. Yesterday in the House, Minister Oda said this about the U.S. policy toward aid and abortion:
Mr. Speaker, this government wants to ensure that the G8 initiative is actually going to get results.

What I want to ensure is that that side of the House has done its homework. If members go to the U.S.A. website, they will find that the U.S.A. does not support the funding of equipment, the training of people who perform abortions, and neither does it support research into abortion.

They should do their homework. We know the facts and we know how to really make a difference in the lives of mothers and children.
I noticed how narrowly and carefully the Minister framed her response. That always gets my bullshit detector flashing red. I went to the website as she suggested and found this page which outlines the U.S. policy on abortions overseas. I draw your attention specifically to the rescinding of the Mexico City Policy. The U.S. government allows USAID to fund organizations that carry out abortions, as long as the funding for abortions comes from non-U.S. government sources. So, unlike in Canada where it appears our government is cutting off any agency that provides abortions for any reason, regardless of the source of funding, the U.S. is going a different route. Canada is going the Mexico City Policy route which, like all things Republican, is more in line with the thinking of the Conservative Party's base.

I am sure Ms. Oda wasn't trying to suggest that Canada was onside with the Obama administration's general aid aims on maternal health. I am sure she was just trying to give the PMO's crack Propaganda-Abteilung research team a shout out.
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