Thursday, May 13, 2010

Peg Luksik for U.S. Senate

While I endorse Mrs. Luksik for the U.S. Senate race in Pennsylvania and I admire her decision not to have an abortion despite the possibility that she would die as a result of the pregnancy, take the following article (Luksik: Toomey is no pro-lifer) with a grain of salt. Pat Toomey actually did vote against allowing funding for overseas military abortions here and here and for a bill disallowing funding for abortions by foreign organizations here. (But that last one is suspicious since mostly liberal democrats voted for it and conservative republicans voted against it. Maybe it was a substitute for something that would have been better.) He did, however, vote against an amendment to a bill which stated:

An amendment to prohibit any funds to be used by the FDA for the testing, development, or approval (including approval of production, manufacturing, or distribution) of any drug for the chemical inducement of abortion.

Toomey also voted against DHHS appropriations bills which had abortion and Planned Parenthood funding in them. (Actually very unusual for a Republican!) As for the 1998 comment, I can't confirm it. And a link is provided ( for the statement about confirming Sotomayor.
Another big issue which Luksik isn't talking about is that Toomey voted for the authorization to use military force in Iraq, killing hundreds of thousands including some children, which is not exactly a pro-life decision. Luksik sounds more non-interventionalist, but does not come right out and say that she would have voted against the war.

Luksik: Toomey is no pro-lifer

Republican Peg Luksik this week called into question Pat Toomey’s pro-life credentials, taking perhaps her most direct swipe yet at the party’s front-running Senate candidate.

Luksik’s campaign seized on a voter guide issued by the anti-abortion group LifePAC of SouthWestern Pennsylvania, which included Toomey on its list of candidates who oppose abortion rights. Though Toomey has for several years now described himself as staunchly pro-life, he had a more libertarian-style, pro-choice image in the late 1990s. When seeking the party’s nomination for Congress in 1998, he told The Morning Call that while he was personally opposed to abortion, he also didn’t like to see government take that individual choice off the table.

“Abortions should be legal in all circumstances as long as the procedure is completed within the first trimester of pregnancy,” he told the newspaper in a 1998 questionnaire.

By the time he was gearing up to challenge Senator Arlen Specter in the 2004 Republican primary, he had established a position more staunchly opposed to abortion. With the political focus this cycle largely on economic issues and the state’s conservative movement lined up firmly behind him, Toomey has rarely had to confront questions on social issues. But Luksik, a conservative activist who has struggled mightily to cut into Toomey’s considerable support as the presumptive GOP nominee, saw the LifePAC voter guide as a chance to bring the issue back to the surface.

In a letter to the organization’s president, shared with reporters on Monday, she expressed her disappointment. She noted that Toomey said he would have voted to confirm Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court, and recalled Toomey’s votes in congress to loosen a ban on federal funding for abortions overseas and against abstinence-only education.

“My history on the issue of the sanctity of life is unquestionable, while my opponent’s history should certainly be cause for concern,” Luksik wrote. “You are preparing to distribute tens of thousands of voter guides to your membership that give the illusion that there are two pro-life Republicans running for United States Senate. In fact, there is only one, and it is me.”

Toomey’s campaign declined to comment.

April 28, 2010 at 7:00 am

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