Will President Obama’s plea for common ground on abortion during his speech at the University of Notre Dame persuade ardent abortion opponents to work with the new president? At first glance, it seems unlikely.
“Each side will continue to make its case to the public with passion and conviction,” Obama said to a mostly receptive audience May 17 at the nation’s flagship Catholic university. “But surely we can do so without reducing those with differing views to caricature.”
In speaking of common ground, the president evoked the memory of the late cardinal Joseph Bernardin of Chicago, who sought conciliation on many tough issues. But Obama’s entreaties for “open hearts” and “fair-minded words” may fall on deaf ears.