I have been saying that not only is the Pence Amendment defunding Planned Parenthood the only way for Republicans to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat, but it is the only issue that matters. Both morally and politically. It this thing in this entire budget debate that is obvious and definitive. Good people can have legitimate differences over what the cuts number should be in this long term continuing resolution should be. But none of the can argue that it should fund Planned Parenthood.
And now it seems others agree with me. Kathryn Lopez at the Corner suggests that the Pence amendment is becoming the Republican presidential litmus test.
Eight of the rumored 2012 Republican presidential contenders have now come out in favor of cutting the federal funding, which the anti-abortion rights group Susan B. Anthony List is highlighting in its ongoing effort to eliminate funding for Planned Parenthood.
The group is circulating new statements of support from former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour to Capitol Hill staffers over the weekend as talks toward a budget deal continue.
Another four potential Republican hopefuls are already on the record supporting the funding cuts: former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (Ga.), former Sen. Rick Santorum (Pa.), Rep. Michele Bachmann (Minn.) and talk radio host Herman Cain.
UPDATE: Make that nine. Mitt Romney spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom e-mails: “Mitt Romney supports the Pence amendment.”