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Monday, May 11, 2009

Frank Klees versus Randy Hillier on abortion

I recently received a mass e-mail from the President of the Canadian Centre for Policy Studies. The e-mail linked to this blog post and the post raised an interesting question. Should someone who is pro-life vote for Randy Hillier or Frank Klees.

This is a portion of the post:

In fact, the only real difference between the two that I can detect seems to be that Klees’ beliefs are more pure than Hillier’s.

Here’s the problem though - unless concrete action is taken to protect the right of those who hold such pure beliefs to openly express them, and to act in accordance with them, anti-abortion activism may itself become a crime. At a minimum, doctors who refuse to perform or facilitate abortions could face disciplinary action, even losing their license to practice medicine.

What is Frank Klees’ plan to deal with these looming threats? If he has one, I don’t know it; nor, I suspect, do my friends and colleagues at CLC. Oh sure, when it comes to answering the CLC questionnaire – a questionnaire that tests beliefs instead of performance – Klees scores an A plus. But that A plus is the grade of a colour-commentator in a hockey broadcast who understands the game well enough, but who never actually played in the big leagues because he either can’t, or won’t, take a hit.

Hillier, on the other hand, not only has a plan to defend free speech and private conscience, he has a record of action too. In fact, the whole reason he entered politics in the first place was to fight for those rights.

I don't know what Randy Hillier's personal views on abortion are, but I do know that Frank Klees has proclaimed himself as 'pro-life.' This has won him the support of pro-life groups such as the Campaign Life Coalition.

Yet as the above link points out, Randy Hillier has proposals that pro life people should support. Mr. Hillier's proposed Freedom of Association and Conscience Act would, among other things, allow a doctor to refuse to commit what he may think of as a sin. This is a substantive proposal that ought to win support from both social conservatives and libertarians.

The question I suppose comes down to; elect someone who is openly supportive of their final goal though with no clear or realistic plan to achieve that goal, or someone who would move policy in a direction that they approve of.

I sympathize: libertarians face this question a lot.

(Note: on the website I couldn't find any endorsement of Frank Klees from Campaign Life Coalition. I got that information from the linked blog. I found this, which says both Klees and Hudak are 'supportable.' If anyone knows anything please clarify.)


Confirmation of the endorsement is here.

Posted by Hugh MacIntyre on May 11, 2009 | Permalink


I would vote for a candidate who clearly supports life. Many women would think my vote would be sexist. However, my heart tells me that a human life, a real living person, is infinitely better than some career aspiration. Muslims are closer to God's truth than, perhaps, other faiths, when it comes to procreation.

Posted by: Agha Ali Arkahn | 2009-05-11 11:03:12 PM

CLC's endorsement of Klees is here - http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2009/may/09050717.html.

I also believe CLC is making a mistake backing Klees rather than Hillier. Klees has good beliefs, and he's certainly a good man, but he has hardly any concrete proposals at all in this election, let alone about this. I believe Hillier's liberty agenda will do by far the most of any of the candidates to actually allow the values of life and family to be protected in society.

Posted by: Peter Gavin | 2009-05-11 11:28:52 PM

The pro-life voter should do what any other sensible voter should: Choose the candidate whose policies will bring the most good to the greatest number of people. Voters who consider only a single issue when casting their ballot are stupid and selfish.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-05-12 8:03:45 AM

Klees is pro-life and Hillier is unclear. I hope that Hillier is pro-life but it is not stated. However, I don't really know anything else about Klee's policies. I support virtually all of Hillier's other positions. I hope that Hillier is pro-life. Yet, I know that on the remaining 95% of issues, we are in complete agreement!

Posted by: Jacque | 2009-05-12 3:38:01 PM

Be prepared to feel the big picture effects from a proposed government Act that would, among other things, allow a doctor to refuse to commit what he may think of as a sin. Well let’s define what religion of sins you are putting into law. Can the ambulance attendant refuse to service me if he believes my sins are: eating pork, adultery, disobeying may parents, homosexually, blood transfusions, atheist, take the Lord's name in vain, spanking my children and/or don't attend church etc. etc. - all these issues are sins to some people. Will I be left at the side of the road dying, well until a fellow sinning - ambulance attendant is willing to give me medical attention? If a doctor didn't want to perform an abortion on someone for medical reasons, then a case by case basis can be applied, but remember - he, who is without sin, may cast the first stone.

Posted by: Jay McMahon | 2009-05-13 6:20:31 AM

Jay, before you go on a religion-bashing tear, think about the flaw in your logic. In the case of abortion, the doctor is refusing to commit a sin himself. In the examples you provide, someone else is refusing to treat you because of sins you committed, presumably in his presence, otherwise how would he have any inkling? And the fact that no one is without sin is hardly an excuse for passing laws requiring them to commit even more, especially against their will.

For a group that purports to distance itself from religion on the grounds of rationality, atheists and agnostics can sure be an irrational lot.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-05-13 7:10:24 AM


Shane said most of what I would say in response, but to add to it, most medical professions would consider it immoral or a 'sin' to refuse service to ANYONE who was in mortal need. This means that to avoid sin an ambulance driver would save any heathen or sinner.

This also raises the question of if the mother's life is in danger should the doctor be expected to perform the neccisary abortion? Could the doctor refuse to act against his conscience and thus allow the mother to die? I am willing to bet any amount of money that the College (and the courts) would rule against such a decision.

Posted by: hughmacintyre | 2009-05-13 9:10:13 AM

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