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Standing Alone in the Center

From the Indianapolis Star:

Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana was one of 14 Senate Democrats -- and the only one considering a 2008 presidential bid -- who voted Tuesday for a bill that would make it a crime to take a pregnant girl across state lines for an abortion without her parents' knowledge.

Bayh's vote will incense pro-choice groups, of course, but he was never in danger of getting their endorsement anyway. Besides, the legislation provided Bayh with a perfect opportunity to stake out the sort of middle ground on the issue of abortion that vast majorities of Americans agree with deep in their gut:

"Bayh supports the right of parents to be involved in the major medical decisions regarding their children, absent a showing of abuse, incest or other compelling reasons," spokeswoman Meg Keck said.

The fact that so many Democrats - including all the serious potential standard bearers of the party in 2008 except one - shun this sort of common-sense approach to abortion and hew to the most extreme positions favored by the likes of NARAL shows just how much influence the pro-choice lobby continues to wield over the Democratic party.