Because Truth Matters

Let’s get this straight from the very beginning.  I’m not planning to vote for Rick Santorum.  I disagree profoundly with most of his positions.  So the defense that follows has nothing to do with my personal political leanings.  It has to do instead with my passion for the truth, the same passion that leads me to consult Snopes before forwarding emails, and to risk offending people by telling them that the emails they are forwarding are LIES.  And you can believe me or not, but I have even done this when the email in question supported my own prejudices.
Rick Santorum’s wife DID NOT have an abortion, no matter what you may have read to the contrary on your favorite website, or what your friend on Facebook said, no matter how much you want to believe it.  Here’s what happened in my own words:  Karen Santorum was about 19 weeks pregnant when her unborn baby was found to be suffering from a fatal condition.  This is where a lot of people choose to terminate.  Instead, the Santorums tried intrauterine surgery.  Tragically, the surgery caused an infection.  Mrs. Santorum had a fever of 105.  Again, instead of moving straight to early induction of their non-viable baby, the Santorums tried antibiotics first.  Labor started due to the infection.  Mrs. Santorum even asked for drugs to stop the labor.  Despite all the lies circulating on the internet, Pitocin was never administered.  Baby Gabriel was born at 20 weeks and apparently lived a short while.  Through this whole ordeal, the Santorums acted according to their stated principles.
Despite his admittedly strict anti-abortion/pro-life sentiments (no exceptions for rape or incest), I cannot find any evidence that Mr. Santorum ever said that abortion should be prohibited if it is necessary to save the mother’s life.  Both he and his wife in fact stated that if it had come down to his wife’s death or early induction, they would have chosen induction.  Mr. Santorum did sign a personhood pledge, but it provides an exception to save the mother’s life.
Here are links about the Santorums’ baby:  Salon article
NPR interview
Here are more links about his position on abortion to save the mother’s life:  http://www.dennyburk.com/gop-candidates-dont-allow-exceptions-for-the-life-of-a-mother/
http://politics.foxnews.mobi/quickPage.html?page=23681&content=63653356&pageNum=-1
So hate Mr. Santorum (or vote against him) for being pro-life, or anti-abortion, or anti-choice if you want–I don’t really care how you express it.  But don’t hate him for being a hypocrite, because he’s not.

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  1. Leslie, thank you for posting this. I, too, was guilty of believing the apparent “rumors” that his wife had an induction/abortion at 20 weeks from things I’d seen on what I considered “reputable” sources. Thank you for setting me and others straight!!

  2. Jane says:

    I’m profoundly pro choice. I don’t view that as being the equivalent of pro-abortion, but rather that a woman is free to choose whatever path they personally want to walk with regard to their own reproductive system. And I’m with you as far as finding the untruths and insinuations about the Santorums to be very distasteful. While I’d probably eat glass before casting a vote for a republican, I’d like for whatever is said about them to be more reflective on their public policy leanings and not attacks on their families (or religion).
    (They refer to people like me as a “bed-wetting” liberal down here in Georgia!

    • lesliesholly says:

      Well, exactly, Jane–we can all find plenty to debate with “the other side” without having to make things up. And that just confuses the real issues. That’s why I always look at sites such as factcheck.org rather than believing anything I see elsewhere on the internet. It’s way too easy to find support for one’s own views these days and a lot harder to find neutral, reliable information. I don’t want someone telling me what to think, and I sure don’t want to form my opinions from lies. Is a “bed-wetting” liberal the equivalent of a “bleeding heart liberal”?

  3. Clisby says:

    I agree with you, and Rick Santorum is about the last candidate I would vote for. Well, that’s not true – there’s Newt Gingrich.

  4. Rilriia says:

    Karen Santorum actually had a relationship with an abortionist for six years… She is a hypocrite.
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/18/karen-santorum-abortion-doctor_n_1214964.html

  5. panther73 says:

    The hate and ignorance this man spreads is just sad. Almost as sad as what happend to Mrs. Santorum & “Gabriel”.

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