Seymour Shows Grit in Changing to Pro-Choice

State Sen. John Seymour’s decision last Thursday to reverse his previous position opposing abortion to one supporting pro-choice may or may not be a political mistake, but one thing is certain--it was an individual act of political and moral courage .

Ever since the U.S. Supreme Court issued its controversial opinion last July giving states the authority to regulate abortion, a politician’s position on the highly charged issue has become a sort of litmus test that liberals and conservatives have been applying to fitness for office. Seymour, a conservative Republican legislator who earnestly wants the GOP nomination for lieutenant governor, is well aware of that.

But since the high court ruling came down, Seymour has been wrestling with his own conscience. He knows where he stands as an individual: He opposes abortion unless pregnancy is a result of rape, incest or if the mother’s life is in danger.

But Seymour also recognizes that despite the authority his public office provides, he does not have the power to impose his personal and religious beliefs on everyone. Seymour doesn’t stop there. He showed that he thought the issue through by deciding to also support public funding of abortion because, he said, “I believe that poor women should not be denied this option simply because they are poor.”

We commend Seymour not only for his pro-choice decision--which we believe is the proper one--but also for his willingness to review his position rather than serving with a closed mind. And we admire his grit in making the tough decision that he knows will prompt political repercussions.