The opening salvo was fired by NARAL Pro-choice America when it issued an alert urging its members to tell top lefty bloggers that pro-choice isn't just a political strategy, because: "choice and abortion are being discussed--in blogs and in the media--more as a political tool than as an issue that affects women's lives.
In response, Kos wrote that without a united front and a good political strategy, the Supreme Court and congress would be filled with anti-choicers:
"Problem is, politics can't be divorced from the issue. So NARAL goes around endorsing Republicans like Chafee because they talk a good game about choice. But then, Republicans like Chafee vote for people like Trent Lott and Bill Frist as majority leaders. And then they vote to confirm reactionary anti-privacy, anti-choice judges like Janice Brown."
"Meanwhile, anti-abortion Democrats like Harry Reid don't vote for Frist or Lott, and they don't vote to confirm reactionary anti-choice judges like Janice Brown. There's no doubt Chafee will vote to confirm Roberts, regardless his record on choice, and yet NARAL would still rather endorse Chafee?"Then, in a post titled "Pipe down little ladies, and get on message," Ann takes Kos and the Dems to task for failing to understand that: "choice is not something that 'gets in the way' of more important Democratic party platform issues. It is the number one issue."
Noting the party's apparent opportunism, she comments: "But when Howard Dean is snuggled up with Democrats for Life and the party backs an anti-choice minority leader, forgive me if I'm not swooning in adoration."
She concludes with this alarmingly simple prescription: "The problem is the Democratic party's creep toward the center on reproductive rights. If Democrats want the support of the pro-choice movement, they have to earn it."
Of course, the Dems and the pro-choicers need each other to succeed. It's a dicey conflict. Would you rather be right or effective? Can you be effective without a strong sense of what's right? (Feministing/Daily Kos)