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The Insiders
Posted at 07:19 AM ET, 02/09/2012

Obama’s huge blunder on contraception will be remembered

I hope the president hangs tough and doesn’t blink. I hope he stands with the interventionist, activist element within the Democratic Party. I’m not referring to Iran or Syria. I hope President Obama doesn’t back down on his decree to force Catholic institutions to disavow sacred tenets of their faith in order for him to dictate a certain lifestyle and force his choices on the rest of us.

It is as bad a political blunder as the Republican handling of the payroll tax cut issue. And it is better than candidate Obama just opining about the peasants who cling to guns and religion. This is an affirmatively anti-religion, back-of-the-hand, big-government insult that could not pass in Congress in a hundred years. This is why we need an election.

As Kathleen Parker says, this is about “freedom of conscience.”

If Obama doesn’t blink, this issue becomes part of the dispute that will be settled in November. And ground zero of this debate will be in the large Midwest states that Obama must win to reach 270-plus electoral votes.

I’m always cautioning that it is foolish to take today’s headlines and extrapolate out to the next election. But this is a rare event in February that will drive votes in November.

Peggy Noonan is America’s muse. She is sui generis. She is the Peggy Noonan of modern American commentary. Read her Saturday Wall Street Journal column to gain an appreciation of the emotional mark that will linger in the thoughtful minds and consciences of millions of voters. In a close race, this could make the difference.

Hang in there, Mr. President — I’m for the other guy.

By  |  07:19 AM ET, 02/09/2012

 
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