Thursday, July 14, 2005

Could Romney Duck Emergency Contraception?

There's an interesting tidbit at the end of a Boston Globe Article about Lieutenant Governor Kerry Healey's coming out in favor of the emergency contraception bill (hat tip to Cape Cod Works)

Some advocates speculated that the [Emergency Contraception] bill could reach the governor's desk during his vacation, which is scheduled for the last week of July and into the first week of August, meaning that Healey would be acting governor and could sign or veto the bill.
This would seem to me to be the best of both worlds for Romney/Healey. Romney gets to maintain his vague status quo on reproductive rights without the nasty business of actually supporting or opposing a controversial issue. Healey, on the other hand, gets to play the hero in a state that is majority pro-choice (and certainly pro-emergency contraception) in case she ends up as the GOP nominee for governor in 2006 without worrying about how it would play nationally.

Now, of course, there's no guarantee that this is the way it will play out, but if it does, I have to wonder what effect it will have on the Romney for President fan club. In 2008, Romney's competition may include people like John McCain, Rudy Giuliani, Bill Frist, George Allen and Rick Santorum. These are people who are not afraid to stake out a firm position on issues -- particularly one as sticky as reproductive rights. Is Romney, who is famously vague on policy and position details, really going to be able to compete with a group of people who, whether you agree or disagree with them, at least have the political courage to stake out firm positions?