Friday Lightning Round: Ruling on Plan B availability

This is a rush transcript from "Special Report," April 5, 2013. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.


PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: The reason Kathleen made this decision was she could not be confident that a 10-year-old or an 11-year-old going to a drugstore should be able, alongside bubble gum or batteries, be able to buy a medication that potentially, if not used properly could end up having an adverse effect. And I think most parents would probably feel the same way.


CHRIS WALLACE, ANCHOR: That was President Obama a couple of years ago explaining the administration's decision to set an age limit on the Plan B -- some call it an abortion pill. And now that, of course, has changed with a federal ruling today by a judge that it can be over the counter and to children much younger, no age limit.

We're back now with the panel for our Friday Lightning Round. Your thoughts, Steve, about the federal judge's decision to make the Plan B pill over the counter?

STEVE HAYES, SENIOR WRITER, THE WEEKLY STANDARD: Well, I think just, if you take a step back, the fact that we're having this discussion is so deeply disturbing. This is literally about the possibility of an 11-year-old going in and getting a Plan B pill after a potential conception. The fact that we are having the discussion is disturbing enough.

I can't walk in to my local CVS and buy Allegra D without showing my driver's license, without signing a waiver because people are afraid you can abuse the drug. Why should an 11-year-old be able to walk in and next to, as the president says, next to a pack of bubble gum be able to pick up Plan B? It is outrageous.

WALLACE: It is interesting. Obviously right-to-lifers are going to be – are very upset about it already, Susan, but as you can see this goes against administration policy as well.

SUSAN MILLIGAN, U.S. NEWS AND WORLD REPORT: I think it creeps any of us out. I don't have children and the idea of a girl that young going in and buying a pill like that just makes me very uncomfortable. On the other hand, I think about a 14-year- old girl who is a victim of incest or rape and terrified and not knowing where to go or what to do. I just wish there was another way to get at it, other than -- I mean I understand why the judge said this 17 year cut off was sort of arbitrary because they have shown this drug is apparently not particularly troublesome for younger girls. But there is something that is very unsettling about the idea of a girl that young going in and making a decision like that and not necessarily knowing how to use the drug correctly.

WALLACE: Charles?

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: There are two issues, there's safety and there's ethics. I would imagine that it's not a drug that you would not want to wantonly have used because of its power, as the president said, in which case the FDA ought to establish a limit and ought to be upheld. If that's not the case, if it's only an ethics issue, then the FDA shouldn't be making ethical decisions. It should be the Congress and the administration. They ought to pass a law that would say that and institute an age limit.

WALLACE: Earlier, Molly Line had an interesting statement about Harvard Law School and the idea that the professors there, who I think it's fair to say generally skew left of center you would probably say rampantly left of center, are concerned themselves about intellectual diversity and would like to see more conservatives. Do you believe it?

KRAUTHAMMER: I would describe it as keeling over left of center, as anybody who has ever been in any of these institutions knows. What I think is important here is a change in the wording. The word "diversity" always means everything except intellectual diversity. So how about introducing the idea, for a change, that there are all kinds of diversity in the country.  It isn't only skin color, ethnicity, history, gender, et cetera. It's also ideas. And what they have is a singular culture, very, very liberal. And it's about time that Harvard and other of those institutions undertook a change, and it begins with recognizing the problem.


MILLIGAN: I think you make a lot more as a corporate lawyer than you do as a law professor anywhere. And, you know, that's part of the issue here. Academia is going to attract a certain kind of person. I haven't seen any evidence where conservative law professors are being rejected, so...

WALLACE: Do you buy that?

HAYES: There is a lot antidotal evidence that conservative law professors have been rejected. Go to a Federalist Society meeting and chances are good you will hear story after story.

Look, I think it will ever be thus. I think this is just the way that academia is. It doesn't mean that conservatives shouldn't make strong pushes at every possible juncture and in every possible way to get in and to make sure that students are exposed to different ideas. But I agree with Charles that it is important that at least these institutions seem to be making -- or an institution seems to be making a basic recognition that there is a problem.

WALLACE: All right, time, Friday Lightning Round, for winners and losers. Steve, you start.

HAYES: Well, my winner is sort of the obvious winner. It's Mark Sanford.  This is somebody that people had sort of written off as having one of the worst falls from grace of an elected official in recent memory. And he came back and he won a primary and I think looks pretty well situated to go and win a general election. It will be a close race but I think is he more likely than not to win that. So he is my winner.

My loser is Planned Parenthood in something that we have discussed.  Here you had representative of Planned Parenthood in Florida testify in front of lawmakers down in that state and basically endorse infanticide. And it took the group the better part of a week to back off of that and when they did that --

WALLACE: These late term abortions where the baby comes out and is actually breathing on its own.

HAYES: The baby is born alive. The law would have required doctors treat the baby born alive, and the question was asked, what should the doctor do? And this person said it's between the doctor and the patient, meaning the mother.

WALLACE: Alright we are running behind, go ahead, winners or losers.

MILLIGAN: Winners, proponents of gay marriage. It's not even just what's happening with DOMA and the courts. It's that every single day you are seeing senator after senator, there is now a majority of senators for gay marriage.

WALLACE: I think there are only four Democrats that haven't come out for it.

MILLIGAN: Yeah. And some of them are sort of conservative. I mean, in the context of the Democratic Party.

And losers I would say accomplished women, starting with Yvette Brill [sic], whose obituary despite the fact that she was a rocket scientist started out with her making beef stroganoff, and then President Obama having to remark on the good looks of the California attorney general.

WALLACE: I'm very sorry, 30 seconds, go ahead.

KRAUTHAMMER: Winner, Ronald Reagan, the father of missile defense.  As we see in Korea he was right. Critics were wrong. The loser of the week is the person in that giant bunny suit, who was on his way to an Easter charity event on his Harley and was stopped by a humorless cop on the ground that he wasn't wearing a helmet, which, if you notice the ears would be very hard to do. But as a happy ending he didn't get a citation. He was simply given a warning and sent hopping happily home on his Harley.

WALLACE: Thank you. That's it for the panel. Stay tuned for something that isn't brain surgery.

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