While common ground is elusive in the fight over reproductive freedoms, Yoest's measured manner is a marked break with those of some of her peers and many fighting in the trenches.
Yoest's deliberative nature is home grown, a product of a peripatetic childhood experience that required adapting to new locations and schools and attracting new friends. So perhaps it is not surprising that she is the kinder, gentler face of a movement winning not just the legal war but the spin game at the moment.
"It's not too difficult to imagine that somewhere in some major pro-abortion organization, there's a bull's-eye with Charmaine's face in the middle," says Gary Bauer, Yoest's former boss at the Family Research Council.
A popular thinker
Yoest was first challenged to dig deep foundations for her antiabortion sensibility at Oxford University in England, where she went to study under conservative ethicist David Cook after serving under Mr. Bauer in the Reagan White House as an intern and staffer.