THE PLANK MAY 10, 2007
I think Rich Lowry has it exactly right in today's Times story:
"You can't win as a pro-choicer who is going to deliberately set on challenging the party's orthodoxy on the issue."
The pro-lifers are willing to tolerate a long history of apostasy--even Planned Parenthood contributions, I'd be willing to wager--as long as you pretend you've changed your mind. Particularly if you're someone they want to love, like Giuliani. The only way to work them into a meaningful lather is by flaunting your pro-choice views, which is what Rudy's chosen to do. In my mind, he's gone from the favorite to someone with no chance of winning the nomination. And, as Lowry points out, it's completely unnecessary, as abortion isn't something that seems to get him worked up one way or the other.
My guess is Rudy thinks he can get away with it because he's Rudy. He thinks he can bend the party to his will just like he bent the squeegee men to his will. More importantly, he thinks the party should bend to his will, rather than vice versa. I don't see it happening.