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Even Governor Haley Barbour May Not Support Personhood

November 3, 2011

When a guy who can’t even talk about the rights of a fetus without getting all misty-eyed says personhood goes too far, you know it really goes too far.

On Wednesday, outgoing Republican Governor Haley Barbour told NBC’s Chuck Todd that though he believes life begins at conception,

“Unfortunately, this personhood amendment doesn’t say that. It says life begins at fertilization, or cloning, or the functional equivalent thereof. That ambiguity is striking a lot of pro-life people here as concerning. And I’m talking about people that are very, outspokenly pro-life.”

He might even vote against it.

The Democractic candidate for governor, Mayor Johnny Dupree of Hattiesburg, has expressed similar concerns, but still plans to vote for the amendment. According to his website:

Johnny DuPree supports the Personhood Amendment. While he has concerns about some of the ramifications, such as on in-vitro fertilization and birth control, he ultimately supports the amendment because he believes life begins at conception.

Here he is telling the Mississippi College School of Law that he believes the ballot initiative is a matter of principle, and therefore though he is concerned about the lack of exceptions for rape and incest, he will vote yes.

According to Salon, Dupree told Cristen Hemmins, an activist against so-called “personhood” who discussed the matter with him via telephone:

I’m starting to see that there are issues … I’ve said I’m going to vote yes and it’s too late to go back on it now. It’d destroy me politically.

Tell him to reconsider by signing this petition: Mayor DuPree: Stand Up Against Personhood. If Democrats don’t speak out against “personhood,” who will?

In other news on the inalienable rights of fertilized eggs, Walter, Hoye, spokesperson for the so-called “personhood” movement, admitted on NPR that the initiative in Mississippi will indeed ban birth control. From The Diane Rehm Show:

Hoye: Any birth control that ends the life of a human being will be impacted by this measure.

Rehm: So that would then include the IUD [intra-uterine device]. What about the birth control pill?

Hoye: If that falls into the same category, yes.

Rehm: So you’re saying that the birth control pill could be considered as taking the life of a human being?

Hoye: I’m saying that once the egg and the oocyte come together and you have that single-celled embryo, at that point you have human life, you’ve got a human being and we’re taking the life of a human being with some forms of birth control and if birth control falls into that category, yes I am.

Notice how he throws that “if” in there, presumably to protect himself from charges of unscientific radicalism. Most prominent supporters of “personhood” are not so coy: The American Family Association, which has supported the movement in Mississippi to the tune of $100,000, says contraception is “just as bad as abortion.” Dr. Beverly McMillan, advisory board member of Yes on 26 and wife of C. Roy “Justifiable-Homicide-Against-Aboriton-Doctors” McMillan, claims that “birth control pills do indeed cause abortions.”

If you haven’t already, get involved with Vote No on 26. Don’t let them make women’s lives constitutionally less valuable than embryos.

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