TALLAHASSEE - A proposed Constitutional amendment that could outlaw birth control pills in Florida looks a lot like federal legislation that state Attorney General Bill McCollum co-sponsored while in Congress.
McCollum, frontrunner GOP candidate for governor, took no stand last week when asked about the "personhood" question that anti-abortion activists are trying to place on Florida's ballot. The proposed amendment to the state Constitution would establish a human being's "personhood" at the start of biological development, which its sponsors define as fertilization.
That would outlaw abortion and, critics fear, might also lead to bans on oral contraceptives and intrauterine devices, because they can prevent a fertilized egg from developing,
Asked about the initiative, McCollum campaign spokeswoman Shannon Gravitte said that McCollum is firmly "pro-life" but "will not be commenting on hypothetical issues … if this proposal ends up on the ballot voters will certainly know where General McCollum stands."
But history draws a connection between McCollum and the "personhood" initiative, since he co-sponsored similar legislation in Congress in 1988. Then-U.S. Rep. McCollum signed on to California Rep. Bob Dornan's House Joint Resolution 529, which would have assigned to "preborn" persons the protections of the Fifth, Thirteenth and Fourteenth amendments governing rights to due process, citizenship and freedom from slavery.
The resolution defined "personhood" to mean "from the moment of conception and without regard to age, health, or condition of dependency."
Paul Dunn, campaign director for Alex Sink, state Chief Financial Officer and McCollum's Democratic rival in the gubernatorial race, called the 1988 resolution "just one example" of McCollum's Congressional record that is "far outside the mainstream."
Now I understand that quite a few women are pro life and against abortions, but are we really living in a world where you don't want to have the option of taking birth control either? I don't think so. And I don't think that kind of thing will fly in Florida either. Bill McCollum is out of the mainstream and its up to the citizens of Florida to drive that point home to him.