Reproductive Rights

Rick Perry Partners With Group That Prays For Jews To Convert To Christianity

When Texas governor and potential presidential candidate Rick Perry announced that he was holding a prayer rally called The Response, co-hosted by the American Family Association, Right Wing Watch flagged the immense influence of another group, the International House of Prayer (IHOP), in organizing the event. Members of the IHOP leadership hold high-ranking positions in The Response’s leadership team, including Director of The Response Luis Cataldo, National Student Mobilization coordinator Dave Sliker, and program coordinators Jill Cataldo and Randy and Kelsey Bohlender. Mike Bickle, the director of IHOP, is also an official endorser of the event. IHOP is closely tied to a similar prayer rally known as The Call, whose head Lou Engle has used The Call to strongly denounce reproductive rights and homosexuality, support Uganda’s “kill-the-gays” bill among other anti-gay legislation, and engage in “spiritual warfare” against the Supreme Court.

IHOP also propagates an extreme but common view held in many Religious Right circles: that the Jewish people must convert to Christianity in order to bring about the return of Jesus Christ to Earth and the End Times. Many Religious Right groups and activists, including John Hagee, another endorser of The Response, believe that the End Times will only be fulfilled once enough Jews leave their faith and become Christians.

In fact, IHOP made a video that asked people to prayer for Jews to convert to Christianity, because “He will return only when Israel is ready and willing to receive Him as their savior and king. When He returns, the entire nation of Israel will be saved.” Much like the spokesman for The Response who said that he wants members of all faiths to “seek out the living Christ” at Perry’s rally, IHOP urges members to pray for Jews to accept the Gospel:

The nation of Israel – God’s chosen people. Believers are commanded in the Bible to pray for this nation, but why? It’s true that God wants to bring forth a people from every tribe, tongue, and nation, neither Jew nor Gentile to worship before his throne, but when it comes to Israel, is there something more? Yes. God has not finished with Israel. The eternal covenant promises of God to Israel still stand.

It is through Israel that God will establish His kingdom on the Earth in fullness, and through whom, He will bring blessing to every nation. Jesus is returning to the Earth to rule as the Jewish king from Jerusalem on the throne of David.

He will return only when Israel is ready and willing to receive Him as their savior and king. When He returns, the entire nation of Israel will be saved.

The attack against Israel will escalate as we approach the End Times, with an increase in global anti-Semitism, culminating in a united political and military assault against the city of Jerusalem. For this reason, it is critical that the people of God come into agreement with God’s purpose for Israel, and take their stand in the place of prayer.

So, how should we pray? Scripture tells us to pray for two cities: our own city, and for the peace of Jerusalem. We must pray, first and foremost, for spiritual peace, that the Gospel would go forth with power among the Jewish people both globally and in the land.

We must pray for the Lord to raise up anointed, prophetic witnesses to the Gospel of Jesus Christ, for it will be through the Gentiles, Paul says, that Israel will be provoked to jealousy. We must also join our prayers with those of believers in the land, praying that God would raise up an anointed witness to Yeshua in the land of Israel. We must pray for social peace in the land of Israel, both relationally and economically.

Finally, we must pray for political peace. There can be no true political peace until Jesus rules as king from Jerusalem, but until that time, we must pray for the safety of believers, the safety of the land from every demonic attack, that the Gospel might go forth with power.

Perkins: "There Is Not An Ounce Of Hostility Or Hate In My Heart"

It is a standard Religious Right claim that their opposition to gay rights and reproductive rights and everything else is rooted not in hatred and intolerance, but rather love ... or, more specifically, their love for Jesus Christ.

Which is exactly the assertion that Tony Perkins made during the recent Watchmen on the Wall conference, where he asserted that it was his love for Jesus that keeps him from reaching over and choking his opponents during television debates because "there is not an ounce of hostility or hate in my heart" for his enemies:

At Ralph Reed Confab, Obama Portrayed as Enemy of Faith and Freedom

Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition gathering in Washington, D.C. this past weekend was essentially a relentless repetition of the GOP’s 2012 attack themes on the Obama administration, mixed with Religious Right leaders’ demands that the Tea Party not abandon social conservatives’ priorities and conservative politicos’ appeals for unity behind whichever candidate emerges from the presidential crowd.  Just about everyone running, or thinking about running, for the presidency on the Republican side was in attendance with the exception of Newt Gingrich.

One of the easiest, and most frequently used, ways to get applause at F&F was to pledge that Obama will be a one-term president.  Among the other major themes:
 
American Exceptionalism
 
Former Senator Rick Santorum, who officially announced his presidential bid this morning, said his campaign theme will be American exceptionalism.  Unfortunately, for Santorum, it seems that every Republican candidate is talking about American exceptionalism – and the claim that President Obama, Democrats, and “liberal elites” don’t believe that the U.S. is the God-ordained greatest nation in the history of the world – so it’s going to be hard to break away from the pack on that score.  Gary Bauer claimed that American elites don’t believe the words of the Declaration of Independence. 
 
‘Obamacare’ = Socialism = The End of Freedom
 
Many speakers cited health care reform as the ultimate example of the Democrats’ commitment to freedom-destroying socialism.  Carrie Severino of the Judicial Crisis Network said it was one example of progressives’ tendency to say “to hell with the Constitution” when it got in the way of their policy goals.  Rep. Allen West even attacked the notion of “shared sacrifice,” which he said was code for “redistribution of wealth,” which is how the right-wing looks at progressive taxation.  Rep. Tom Price, who clearly needs to spend some time studying American history, called the health care reform bill “the furthest reach of oppression that this society has ever seen.”  Others similarly insisted that the implementation of the law would mean the end of liberty in America.  Michele Bachman shouted, “I will not rest until we repeal Obamacare. America will not rest until we repeal Obamacare.”  Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli said the fight against Obamacare is just one sign that federalism is reemerging.  He argued that Americans need to understand that there is a “liberty pie” that does not grow – and it has only two slices, government power and individual liberty – and one necessarily grows at the expense of the other. 
 
America Needs More Religion (as long as it’s not Islam)
 
The FFC was long on Religious Right rhetoric on religion and politics.  The pastor who gave the opening prayer for the conference gave thanks for “a nation founded for the glory of God and the advancement of the Christian faith.”  The Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins exulted that it was good to be among folks who are “not ashamed to defend the Christian principles on which this nation was founded.”  The Republican National Committee’s Reince Priebus said America’s greatness is “rooted in our faith” and that “faith in our God, and faith in our savior” is “not a convenience, it is the foundation of a good life.” But Islam was clearly deemed a threat, with one participant telling a contentiouspanel on Sharia law that in Minnesota “we practically have a Muslim state.”  
 
Reproductive Rights and Gay Rights = Big Government
 
In the “Social Issues: Why They Still Matter” panel, John Fund of the Wall Street Journal discussed “the psychology of those who are trying to undermine the moral fiber of this country,” arguing that liberals are compelled by a lust for power and therefore need to “control people” and “lower standards of society as a whole.” Fund explained that “if you can lower standards” by permitting legal abortion and gay equality, then liberals can gain control over society, and insisted that “we have to bring back shaming” of women who had abortions because “we need to be judgmental about this issue, we need to call out people for the choices that they made, ‘shaming’ is not a bad word in this society.” On a separate panel, National Organization for Marriage founder Maggie Gallagher said, “When you redefine marriage, you also redefine the relationship between Genesis and the American tradition,” which would jeopardize freedom because “in some cases, the power of government is already being used to marginalize and stigmatize people who disagree with the foundational ideas of same-sex marriage.”
 
Obama as Enemy of Israel
 
Michele Bachman was one of several speakers who misportrayed recent Obama administration comments about Israel, calling them a “shocking display of betraying our greatest friend and ally.” One participant commented that “life, liberty, and Israel” were the elements that make up “the pursuit of happiness.” Jay Sekulow of the American Center for Law and Justice said Obama may soon be referring to Israel as “the Zionist regime” and Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission implied that Obama may bringing upon the country the curse of God for his policy towards Israel. Peter Roff of U.S. News and World Report lamented that “the American Jewish community is for some reason enamored of Democratic politicians in general and Barack Obama specifically.”
 
Unified Conservative Movement
 
FRC’s Perkins was among many Religious Right speakers who argued for keeping social conservatives’ priorities at the forefront of the movement in the name of conservative movement unity.  Perkins used a strange mixed metaphor, saying it is the “bottom of the ninth for our beloved country” and no time to lapse into an undisciplined orchestra, calling for a “rousing symphony” – drums of national defense, the horns of economic abundance, and the strings that bind a strong family.  Among others who sounded the same theme were Indiana gubernatorial candidate Mike Pence, who said, “we have to recognize that our present crisis is not just economic or political but moral in nature” and touted the importance of the sanctity of life, “traditional marriage,” and the importance of organized religion in our daily life.
 
Haley Barbour, one of the potential presidential candidates who decided not to run, devoted his remarks to lecturing attendees about the need to rally behind whichever candidate was nominated even though the nominee won’t be perfect.  “In politics,” he said, “purity is the enemy of victory.” Tony Blankley warned that the media and Democrats would love to “divide and conquer” the movement.
 
Advocating for social issues at the FFC was clearly preaching to the choir.  But some Tea Party activists were clearly annoyed by the “you’re nothing without us” attitude of Religious Right activists Jordan Sekulow and Matt Barber at a panel on the “Teavangelicals” that was moderated by the Christian Broadcasting Network’s David Brody.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 5/17/11

Michele Bachmann

2012: More likely to run for president following Mike Huckabee's decision against running (CBS News, 5/16). 

Constitution: High school student challenges her to a debate on the Constitution as a result of her record of making incorrect statements (Minnesota Independent, 5/13). 

Herman Cain

Georgia: Wins praise for speech at Georgia GOP convention (Southern Political Report, 5/16). 

Florida: Tops field in Fort Lauderdale Tea Party straw poll (Sunshine State News, 5/16). 

Mitch Daniels

Reproductive Rights: Signs law defunding Planned Parenthood that costs thousands their health care, state millions of dollars (The Faster Times, 5/16).

2012: Members of Indiana Republican Party encourage Daniels to run during state convention (AP, 5/13).

Religious Right: Anti-choice activists upset Daniels weighed Condoleezza Rice as a running mate because she is pro-choice (Life News, 5/13). 

GOP: Reports say that Governors Haley Barbour, Chris Christie and Scott Walker would endorse Daniels (CBS News, 5/12). 

Newt Gingrich

Religious Right: Denies advisers' links to Dominionist theology (RWW, 5/16).

Medicare: Describes Paul Ryan's plan to privatize Medicare as "right wing social engineering" but previously said he would've voted for it (Think Progress, 5/16). 

Health Care: Makes inconsistent remarks over his past support for health care insurance mandates (Politico, 5/16). 

Iowa: Will make swing through Iowa this week following official announcement (Dubuque Telegraph Herald, 5/15). 

Jon Huntsman

Religious Right: Set to address Ralph Reed's Faith and Freedom Coalition (RWW, 5/16).

South Carolina: Huckabee's former state campaign chair announces his support for Huntsman (Politico, 5/16). 

Florida: Meets with key donors in Florida (St. Petersburg Times, 5/11). 

Roy Moore

Religious Right: Claims President Obama is "pushing his own immoral values without regard to what the people think or believe" (WND, 5/16). 

Campaign: Launches website for exploratory committee (RoyMoore2012.com).

Sarah Palin

PAC: Embarks on new direct mail campaign with focus on 2012 election (WaPo, 5/16). 

2012: Supporters hope that Huckabee's announcement will create an opening for Palin (Commentary, 5/16). 

Tim Pawlenty

South Carolina: Hires political director for South Carolina primary (The Hill, 5/17). 

Environment: Continues to apologize for past support of ‘cap and trade’ system (Minnesota Post, 5/17).

Mitt Romney

Fundraising: Raises over $10 million on Monday call-day in Las Vegas (WaPo, 5/17). 

Health Care: Defends state health plan that is analogous to federal health care law (NYT, 5/13). 

Rick Santorum

Medicare: Criticizes Gingrich for attacking Paul Ryan’s Medicare privatization proposal (The Hill, 5/16). 

Health Care: Knocks Romney for defending his Massachusetts health care law (The State Column, 5/13).

Heck: DC Mayor Vince Gray Wants To Punish Kids Who "Survive The Abortion Holocaust"

During the heated fight over the federal budget, Republicans won a compromise that stopped the city of Washington D.C. from using its own tax dollars to help low-income women access reproductive health services and added more funding to a DC private school voucher program opposed by local officials. Strongly objecting to the House GOP’s blatant encroachment on home rule, which included financing an ineffective voucher program while taking away crucial funding for women’s family planning, DC Mayor Vince Gray and a number of Council members were arrested during a protest. Anti-choice leaders harshly criticized Gray, deriding him a proponent of black genocide who wants to destroy the city’s African American population.

Indiana right-wing commentator Peter Heck, who called President Obama a disgrace to his ancestors over his pro-choice views, is out with a new column charging Gray with supporting the “slaughter [of] innocent children” while punishing those “who survive the abortion holocaust”:

But beyond the blatantly obvious flip-flops which the Obama-loving mainstream press find a way to excuse as just part of the president's remarkably nuanced mind, this behavior fits a much larger pattern of inconsistency that has come to define the liberal mind in America. Inconsistencies that should bring great embarrassment when exposed, and that rationality would demand be confronted and resolved, are systematically embraced and welcomed in the land of left-believe.

How else can one explain the recent protest that took place in Washington, DC? There, over 40 liberals (including the city's mayor and several councilmen) took to the streets to complain that the budget deal recently passed by Congress would deprive the nation's capital city of federal tax dollars to fund abortions. In the name of choice, these left-wing activists blocked the streets until being detained by police. On its own, seeing a group of liberals championing the right to choose to kill children in the womb is nothing new.

But that wasn't all they were protesting. Another part of the budget deal that had raised their ire was the reinstatement of the Opportunities Scholarship Program. This school-choice program provides poor families the chance to move their children from failing inner-city schools to higher performing ones, allowing future generations of predominantly minority students the opportunity to escape the cycle of poverty that engulfs them. This protest, then, is the perfect embodiment of modern liberal thought: rally in the streets to continue facilitating the choice to slaughter innocent children in the womb while simultaneously demanding that those children who survive the abortion holocaust be given no choice to break free from their deplorable surroundings.

Childress: Gay Equality Is A Sign Of The End Times

Clenard Childress Jr. is a fervent anti-choice leader who believes that legal abortion is intended to bring about black genocide and Obama wants to destroy the African American community. He founded BlackGenocide.org and is a leader in rabidly anti-choice groups like the Genocide Awareness Project and the Life Education And Resource Network, and helped organize Priests for Life’s “Freedom Rides” against reproductive rights. But Childress isn’t only a militant opponent of abortion-rights, as he penned a column today attacking gays and lesbians and gay rights. Childress criticized religious leaders and people of faith who support equal rights for gays as “false prophets” and that increasing acceptance of gays is a sign of the End Times:

Amazingly enough, and in spite of all the evidence to the contrary, there are clerics today — false prophets, as it were — who say the Bible does not repudiate homosexuality. When Jesus was threatening a group of religious hypocrites, and said to them it was going to be worse for them than Sodom and Gomorrah, all those of the Jewish culture understood and knew of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah which was destroyed by "fire and brimstone" and why it was destroyed. As Christians, should we suppose and can we believe that all of a sudden, God has changed his perspective on homosexuality as these false prophets would have us believe? Are we that stupid? Remember, Jesus said in the last days it would be as the days of Lot.

So, what was it like it the days of Lot? Homosexuality was demanding and imposing itself upon the righteous to capitulate, to yield, to give way to its predominance where Lot lived. Genesis 19:1-5 says,

1 It was evening when the two angels came to Sodom. Lot was sitting at Sodom's [city] gate. Seeing them, Lot rose up to meet them and bowed to the ground.

2 And he said, My lords, turn aside, I beg of you, into your servant's house and spend the night and bathe your feet. Then you can arise early and go on your way. But they said, No, we will spend the night in the square.

3 [Lot] entreated and urged them greatly until they yielded and [with him] entered his house. And he made them a dinner [with drinking] and had unleavened bread which he baked, and they ate.

4 But before they lay down, the men of the city of Sodom, both young and old, all the men from every quarter, surrounded the house.

5 And they called to Lot and said, Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us, that we may know (be intimate with) them.


'Bring the men outside that we may know (be intimate with) them...' Jesus said prophetically that in the last days the homosexual community will demand their lifestyle be accepted as a right in society. And now we are even seeing homosexuality bandied about as a "Civil Right" that should be guaranteed under the Constitution similar to some of the rights being sought through the modern "Civil Rights Movement." They are not the same, but be that as it may be, the same Jesus condemned Sodom and Gomorrah for their lifestyle.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 4/12/11

Michele Bachmann

Iowa: Slams marriage equality in speech to The Family Leader (Politico, 4/11).

Religious Right: Wins straw poll at Liberty University's The Awakening 2011 (Freedom Federation, 4/11). 

Budget: Refuses to endorse budget compromise (NPR, 4/11). 

Haley Barbour

Background: Experience as a lobbyist may make problems for campaign (AP, 4/12).

New Hampshire: Traveling to Republican events in New Hampshire this week (Boston Globe, 4/11).

Herman Cain

South Carolina: Talks about the "ultimate destruction of the IRS" at Furman University (CSBT, 4/9). 

Background: Discusses the role faith plays in his presidential ambitions (Christian Post, 4/8). 

Newt Gingrich

Georgia: Slated to address Georgia GOP convention (The State Column, 4/11).

Religious Right: Speaks to conservative leaders at Liberty University (Lynchburg News & Advance, 4/8). 

Minnesota: To deliver keynote address to anti-gay Minnesota group along with Bachmann (RWW, 4/11). 

Mike Huckabee

Reproductive Rights: Endorses Janet Porter's "Hearbeat Bill" (RWW, 4/11). 

Religious Right: Faces increasing scrutiny over ties to pseudo-historian David Barton (RWW, 4/7).

Jon Huntsman

Utah: Receives support of just fourteen percent of Republicans in home state of Utah (AP, 4/10). 

South Carolina: Selected to deliver commencement address to University of South Carolina (The Hill, 4/8). 

Sarah Palin

Birther: Lauds Donald Trump's "investigation" of Obama's birth certificate (Mediaite, 4/9). 

Poll: Popularity continues to plunge, even among Republicans (WaPo, 4/8). 

Tim Pawlenty

Campaign: Picks former head of the Republican Governors Association as campaign manager (Star Tribune, 4/11). 

Iowa: Campaign aide arrested for breaking into home while drunk (Des Moines Register, 4/8). 

Mitt Romney

Health Care: Marks fifth anniversary of Massachusetts health care reform law (RCP, 4/12). 

2012: Makes video announcement of exploratory committee (LA Times, 4/11). 

Rick Santorum

New Hampshire: Commits to June 7 presidential debate in New Hampshire (The Hill, 4/11). 

South Carolina: Wins straw poll in GOP-heavy Greenville County (Greenville Online, 4/10). 

Health Care: Says health care reform makes one "less than what God created you to be" (RWW, 4/8). 

Donald Trump

Religious Right: Speaks about faith to David Brody of CBN News (CBN News, 4/11). 

Media: Lashes out at Vanity Fair and the New York Times (Vanity Fair, 4/11).

Arizona Bans "Race-Based" Abortion In Attempt To Bolster "Abortion As Black Genocide" Myth

In early February Right Wing Watch reported on a bill in Arizona that would make it a felony for women from having abortions if the decision to terminate the pregnancy was based on race or sex. Yesterday, Governor Jan Brewer signed the bill into law, allowing the biological father or the woman’s parents to sue abortion providers for damages if the doctor knowingly conducting the procedure on race or sex grounds:

Arizona is the first state in the nation to make sex- or race-selection abortions a crime.

Gov. Jan Brewer on Tuesday signed into law House Bill 2443, which makes it a felony for a doctor to perform an abortion based on the sex or race of the fetus.



Rep. Katie Hobbs, D-Phoenix, said the only proof Montenegro offered was a magazine article on such practices in China and India.

The law allows the father of an aborted fetus - or, if the mother is a minor, the mother's parents - to take legal action against the doctor or other health-care provider who performed the abortion. If convicted of the felony, physicians would face up to seven years in jail and the loss of their medical license.

The law is a result of a right-wing campaign to smear abortion providers, notably Planned Parenthood, for allegedly targeting women of color in order to commit “genocide” against the African American community. Anti-choice groups have launched billboard campaigns using images of black children and President Obama, publicized the discredited “documentary” Maafa 21, and organized “Freedom Rides” against abortion-rights.

Susan Cohen of the Guttmacher Institute explains how activists who want to take away women’s reproductive rights are twisting the facts about abortion in minority communities. As Cohen explains, African American women’s disproportionate lack of access to contraception and healthcare has led not only to higher rates of unintended pregnancies but also to higher rates of sexually transmitted infections:

These activists are exploiting and distorting the facts to serve their antiabortion agenda. They ignore the fundamental reason women have abortions and the underlying problem of racial and ethnic disparities across an array of health indicators. The truth is that behind virtually every abortion is an unintended pregnancy. This applies to all women—black, white, Hispanic, Asian and Native American alike. Not surprisingly, the variation in abortion rates across racial and ethnic groups relates directly to the variation in the unintended pregnancy rates across those same groups.

Black women are not alone in having disproportionately high unintended pregnancy and abortion rates. The abortion rate among Hispanic women, for example, although not as high as the rate among black women, is double the rate among whites. Hispanics also have a higher level of unintended pregnancy than white women. Black women's unintended pregnancy rates are the highest of all. These higher unintended pregnancy rates reflect the particular difficulties that many women in minority communities face in accessing high-quality contraceptive services and in using their chosen method of birth control consistently and effectively over long periods of time. Moreover, these realities must be seen in a larger context in which significant racial and ethnic disparities persist for a wide range of health outcomes, from diabetes to heart disease to breast and cervical cancer to sexually transmitted infections (STI), including HIV.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 3/8/11

Michele Bachmann

Health Care: Decries secret funding of reform law which wasn't actually a secret (Minnesota Post, 3/7).

Energy: As gas prices rise over Mideast crisis, Bachmann blames Obama (CNN, 3/7).

Religious Right: Invites Mat Staver of Liberty Counsel to her Tea Party Caucus (RWW, 3/4).

Haley Barbour

Campaign: Adds staff to leadership PAC (The Fix, 3/7).

Iowa: Will join Bachmann, Santorum, Gingrich and others at conference hosted by Steve King (Des Moines Register, 3/7).

Background: Made millions as a lobbyist for the energy industry, now repeating their arguments (HuffPo, 3/3).

Mitch Daniels

Indiana: Democrats in state legislature lead boycott to protest Daniels's anti-labor agenda (TPM, 3/4).

Religious Right: Richard Land attacks Daniels's truce proposal as "political suicide" (RWW, 3/4).

Newt Gingrich

Campaign: Discusses "confusion" of exploratory committee announcement (Des Moines Register, 3/7).

Obama: Tells Ralph Reed's Faith and Freedom Coalition that "secular, socialist" Obama administration "cannot represent America" (The Hill, 3/7).

Religious Right: Plans to address Religious Right conferences in Iowa and Liberty University, and meet with controversial pastor John Hagee (RWW, 3/4).

Mike Huckabee

South Carolina: Tells South Carolina crowd on book tour that the state is a must-win primary (The State, 3/8).

Culture: Slams actress Natalie Portman for allegedly glorifying single motherhood (The Week, 3/4).

Obama: Agrees with Bryan Fischer that Obama is anti-American; falsely claims that President Obama grew up in Kenya and then lied in his mea culpa (RWW, 3/2; County Fair, 3/7).

Religious Right: Joins Bachmann, Barbour, Gingrich and pseudo-historian David Barton for a webcast on religion in politics (RWW, 3/2).

Jon Huntsman

Campaign: Top aides meet in New Orleans, set sights on New Hampshire voters (RCP, 3/7).

Obama: Praise from President may damage Huntsman's chances (Salt Lake Tribune, 3/6).

Donors: Supporters of Huntsman paid for video about his work as Ambassador (Politico, 3/3).

Sarah Palin

2012: Says she would run for President if voters are ready for someone who is against "obsessive partisanship" (BBC News, 3/7).

Culture: Picks fight with comedian Kathy Griffin (LA Times, 3/7).

Foreign Affairs: Prepares for trip to India (Politico, 3/6).

Tim Pawlenty

2012: May be GOP front runner due to the "process of elimination" (TNR, 3/8).

Religious Right: Calls on members of Ralph Reed's Iowa group to "take back our country" (CBS News, 3/7).

Minnesota: Keith Ellison says Pawlenty has "no connection" to his roots (Think Progress, 3/4).

Buddy Roemer

Tea Party: Tells Religious Right group, "Thank God for the tea party" (Des Moines Register, 3/7).

Campaign: The former Louisiana governor announces exploratory committee (CBS News, 3/4).

Mitt Romney

Health Care: Massachusetts AG uses Romney's health care policy to defend federal law (Politico, 3/7).

Social issues: After turning hard right on social issues, Romney now wants to downplay them (Salon, 3/7).

Campaign: Produces "restoring hope" video for leadership PAC (Politico, 3/7).

Rick Santorum

Reproductive Rights: Plays-up his career in the anti-choice movement to Ralph Reed's Iowa group (Des Moines Register, 3/7).

Religious Right: Argues in Iowa op-ed that LGBT equality will "eviscerate" freedom (RWW, 3/7).

Raul Labrador Badly Twists the Facts on Planned Parenthood

During his successful congressional campaign last year, now-Congressman Raul Labrador (R-ID) used his opposition to abortion-rights as a wedge issue to criticize his opponent, who was the most conservative Democrat in the House. The freshman congressman recently joined his conservative colleagues by voting in favor of the Pence amendment to defund the women’s health organization Planned Parenthood. ABC’s Boise affiliate KIVI reports:

Freshman Boise congressman, Raul Labrador says the abortion debate just about splits this country in half, but GOP lawmakers argues all Idahoans agree on one part. "They don't want the federal government to be abortions. There's so much money going to Planned Parenthood. And it's impossible for us to know where they're going. They claim they are not funding any abortion with that money, but that's the main business they do," argues Labrador.



Planned Parenthood believes Congress is attempting to take away the reproductive rights of women. However, Congressman Labrador takes exception to that. The freshman republican, states, "I don't think Planned Parenthood speaks for women. If they want to provide services, they can continue to do so. We're not closing their shop, we're just saying no more federal funding." The Senate is expected to vote on the resolution this coming week.

However, Labrador is indisputably wrong when he said that abortion is Planned Parenthood’s “the main business.”

Abortion services account for just three percent of the group’s services, with the vast majority going towards contraception, testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections, immunizations, and screenings for breast and cervical cancer. Such services especially help women without health insurance, with Planned Parenthood clinics sometimes acting as the only women’s health service providers in many regions.

Labrador also incorrectly describes the federal government’s role in providing abortion services, as the 35-year old Hyde Amendment prohibits federal taxpayer funding abortion care except in the cases of rape and incest, or when the woman’s life is at risk.

The freshman Congressman’s erroneous statements reflect the collaboration of Religious Right and Republican leaders to dishonestly smear Planned Parenthood.

Raul Labrador Badly Twists the Facts on Planned Parenthood

During his successful congressional campaign last year, now-Congressman Raul Labrador (R-ID) used his opposition to abortion-rights as a wedge issue to criticize his opponent, who was the most conservative Democrat in the House. The freshman congressman recently joined his conservative colleagues by voting in favor of the Pence amendment to defund the women’s health organization Planned Parenthood. ABC’s Boise affiliate KIVI reports:

Freshman Boise congressman, Raul Labrador says the abortion debate just about splits this country in half, but GOP lawmakers argues all Idahoans agree on one part. "They don't want the federal government to be abortions. There's so much money going to Planned Parenthood. And it's impossible for us to know where they're going. They claim they are not funding any abortion with that money, but that's the main business they do," argues Labrador.



Planned Parenthood believes Congress is attempting to take away the reproductive rights of women. However, Congressman Labrador takes exception to that. The freshman republican, states, "I don't think Planned Parenthood speaks for women. If they want to provide services, they can continue to do so. We're not closing their shop, we're just saying no more federal funding." The Senate is expected to vote on the resolution this coming week.

However, Labrador is indisputably wrong when he said that abortion is Planned Parenthood’s “the main business.”

Abortion services account for just three percent of the group’s services, with the vast majority going towards contraception, testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections, immunizations, and screenings for breast and cervical cancer. Such services especially help women without health insurance, with Planned Parenthood clinics sometimes acting as the only women’s health service providers in many regions.

Labrador also incorrectly describes the federal government’s role in providing abortion services, as the 35-year old Hyde Amendment prohibits federal taxpayer funding abortion care except in the cases of rape and incest, or when the woman’s life is at risk.

The freshman Congressman’s erroneous statements reflect the collaboration of Religious Right and Republican leaders to dishonestly smear Planned Parenthood.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 2/22/11

Michele Bachmann

South Carolina: Slams Obama's foreign policy and says striking workers should be fired in address to GOP activists (Spartanburg Herald Journal, 2/20).

Health: Criticizes Michele Obama for encouraging breast feeding (WaPo, 2/19).

Veterans: Faces resistance to her plan to dramatically cut funding to veterans (The Daily Beast, 2/18).

Haley Barbour

Iowa: Tells state's governor that he will campaign in Iowa if he decides to run (Des Moines Register, 2/21).

Huckabee: Wins praise on race-issues and political strategy from Mike Huckabee (CNN, 2/21).

Race: Silent on proposed car tag honoring founder of Ku Klux Klan (Clarion Ledger, 2/18).

Religious Right: Attending screening of Creationist movie "The Genesis Code" in New Hampshire (Roll Call, 2/17).

Mike Huckabee

2012: Knocks Tea Party's purity tests; claims it will be difficult for GOP nominee to beat Obama (WaPo, 2/21).

Book: Says he will weight "reaction to the message" of his book tour when deciding presidential bid (The Hill, 2/21).

Religious Right: Blasts Islam and a church that hosts Muslim worshipers on Fox News (Mediaite, 2/19).

Reproductive Rights: Tells anti-choice groups that if he runs, he will emphasize his opposition to abortion rights (RWW, 2/15).

Sarah Palin

Book: Leaked manuscript of ex-aide's book shows Palin as vindictive, mistrustful (Anchorage Daily News, 2/19).

Reality TV: Show received $1.2 million in government subsidies (Fairbanks Daily-News Miner, 2/19).

Labor: Chastises labor unions for protesting in Wisconsin (Facebook, 2/18).

Tim Pawlenty

Economy: Describes national debt as a “pile of poo” (Star Tribune, 2/21).

Tea Party: Addresses Tea Party Patriots policy summit in Arizona (WSJ, 2/18).

Mitt Romney

Huckabee: Former rival denies rumor that he will run just to stop Romney (Politico, 2/21).

Economy: Conservative New York Post bashes Romney's record on Wall Street (NYPost, 2/19).

Rick Santorum

New Hampshire: New Hampshire Journal calls Santorum "Mitt Romney with a soul" (PoliticsPA, 2/21).

Religious Right: Speaks to ultraconservative Ave Maria University, calls Tea Party “a blessing to the country” (Naples News, 2/18).

Internet: Discusses notorious “google problem” (Roll Call, 2/16).

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 2/22/11

Michele Bachmann

South Carolina: Slams Obama's foreign policy and says striking workers should be fired in address to GOP activists (Spartanburg Herald Journal, 2/20).

Health: Criticizes Michele Obama for encouraging breast feeding (WaPo, 2/19).

Veterans: Faces resistance to her plan to dramatically cut funding to veterans (The Daily Beast, 2/18).

Haley Barbour

Iowa: Tells state's governor that he will campaign in Iowa if he decides to run (Des Moines Register, 2/21).

Huckabee: Wins praise on race-issues and political strategy from Mike Huckabee (CNN, 2/21).

Race: Silent on proposed car tag honoring founder of Ku Klux Klan (Clarion Ledger, 2/18).

Religious Right: Attending screening of Creationist movie "The Genesis Code" in New Hampshire (Roll Call, 2/17).

Mike Huckabee

2012: Knocks Tea Party's purity tests; claims it will be difficult for GOP nominee to beat Obama (WaPo, 2/21).

Book: Says he will weight "reaction to the message" of his book tour when deciding presidential bid (The Hill, 2/21).

Religious Right: Blasts Islam and a church that hosts Muslim worshipers on Fox News (Mediaite, 2/19).

Reproductive Rights: Tells anti-choice groups that if he runs, he will emphasize his opposition to abortion rights (RWW, 2/15).

Sarah Palin

Book: Leaked manuscript of ex-aide's book shows Palin as vindictive, mistrustful (Anchorage Daily News, 2/19).

Reality TV: Show received $1.2 million in government subsidies (Fairbanks Daily-News Miner, 2/19).

Labor: Chastises labor unions for protesting in Wisconsin (Facebook, 2/18).

Tim Pawlenty

Economy: Describes national debt as a “pile of poo” (Star Tribune, 2/21).

Tea Party: Addresses Tea Party Patriots policy summit in Arizona (WSJ, 2/18).

Mitt Romney

Huckabee: Former rival denies rumor that he will run just to stop Romney (Politico, 2/21).

Economy: Conservative New York Post bashes Romney's record on Wall Street (NYPost, 2/19).

Rick Santorum

New Hampshire: New Hampshire Journal calls Santorum "Mitt Romney with a soul" (PoliticsPA, 2/21).

Religious Right: Speaks to ultraconservative Ave Maria University, calls Tea Party “a blessing to the country” (Naples News, 2/18).

Internet: Discusses notorious “google problem” (Roll Call, 2/16).

South Dakota Abortion Bill Forces Women to Seek Counseling at Anti-Choice Centers

While the South Dakota state legislature announced today that it will shelve a radical bill that would open the door to legalizing the murder of doctors who perform abortions, the state is still weighing other legislation that would significantly curtail reproductive rights. NARAL Pro-Choice America says that South Dakota already has some of the most draconian laws on the books that constrain women’s access to reproductive health services, including biased counseling and 24 hour waiting periods, even though the state’s only clinic which offers abortion coverage has to fly in a doctor once a week to see patients. While voters twice rejected a comprehensive ban on abortion in the 2006 and 2008 referendums, the Republican-controlled legislature continues to create new burdens for women.

A measure passed by the State House Judiciary Committee would require women seeking an abortion to first visit a “pregnancy help center,” also known as a crisis pregnancy center (CPC), where they must inform women of “the risk factors” and “complications associated with abortion,” and “have a private interview to discuss her circumstances that may subject her decision to coercion.”

The legislation, introduced by Republican State Rep. Roger Hunt, says that such centers can be either “secular or faith based” and the bill only approves a center that does not “perform abortions and is not affiliated with any physician or entity that performs abortions, and does not now refer pregnant mothers for abortions, and has not referred any pregnant mother for abortions for the three-year period.”

A 2006 Congressional report found that such pregnancy centers frequently employ misleading and fallacious information to link abortion to breast cancer, infertility and other fertility problems, and severe psychological problems such as an increased chance of suicide. “The vast majority of the federally funded pregnancy resource centers contacted during the investigation provided information about the risks of abortion that was false or misleading,” according to the investigation, “In many cases, this information was grossly inaccurate or distorted.”

The National Abortion Federation also notes that such centers are mostly staffed by volunteers whose “main qualifications are a commitment to Christianity and anti-choice beliefs,” rather than medical professionals, and “many CPCs are connected with religious organizations, but few disclose that fact in their advertising.” And a report by The Daily Beast looked into the propaganda tools and medically-unsound practices commonplace at such pregnancy centers.

But if State Rep. Hurt gets his way, South Dakota may force women looking to terminate their pregnancy to first gain the approval of the staff of such biased centers, on top of an existing 24 hour waiting period. Since a doctor that provides abortion procedures is only available in the entire state just once a week, this bill would gravely endanger the already-limited access women have to reproductive services.

South Dakota Abortion Bill Forces Women to Seek Counseling at Anti-Choice Centers

While the South Dakota state legislature announced today that it will shelve a radical bill that would open the door to legalizing the murder of doctors who perform abortions, the state is still weighing other legislation that would significantly curtail reproductive rights. NARAL Pro-Choice America says that South Dakota already has some of the most draconian laws on the books that constrain women’s access to reproductive health services, including biased counseling and 24 hour waiting periods, even though the state’s only clinic which offers abortion coverage has to fly in a doctor once a week to see patients. While voters twice rejected a comprehensive ban on abortion in the 2006 and 2008 referendums, the Republican-controlled legislature continues to create new burdens for women.

A measure passed by the State House Judiciary Committee would require women seeking an abortion to first visit a “pregnancy help center,” also known as a crisis pregnancy center (CPC), where they must inform women of “the risk factors” and “complications associated with abortion,” and “have a private interview to discuss her circumstances that may subject her decision to coercion.”

The legislation, introduced by Republican State Rep. Roger Hunt, says that such centers can be either “secular or faith based” and the bill only approves a center that does not “perform abortions and is not affiliated with any physician or entity that performs abortions, and does not now refer pregnant mothers for abortions, and has not referred any pregnant mother for abortions for the three-year period.”

A 2006 Congressional report found that such pregnancy centers frequently employ misleading and fallacious information to link abortion to breast cancer, infertility and other fertility problems, and severe psychological problems such as an increased chance of suicide. “The vast majority of the federally funded pregnancy resource centers contacted during the investigation provided information about the risks of abortion that was false or misleading,” according to the investigation, “In many cases, this information was grossly inaccurate or distorted.”

The National Abortion Federation also notes that such centers are mostly staffed by volunteers whose “main qualifications are a commitment to Christianity and anti-choice beliefs,” rather than medical professionals, and “many CPCs are connected with religious organizations, but few disclose that fact in their advertising.” And a report by The Daily Beast looked into the propaganda tools and medically-unsound practices commonplace at such pregnancy centers.

But if State Rep. Hurt gets his way, South Dakota may force women looking to terminate their pregnancy to first gain the approval of the staff of such biased centers, on top of an existing 24 hour waiting period. Since a doctor that provides abortion procedures is only available in the entire state just once a week, this bill would gravely endanger the already-limited access women have to reproductive services.

CPAC Anti-Choice Panel Pledges to "Drive" GOP's Agenda

CPAC’s anti-abortion rights panel “The Pro-Life Movement: Plans and Goals” was galvanized over the election of a Republican-led House, believing that the GOP leadership was committed to passing anti-choice legislation.

Hosted by Tim Goeglein, the head of Focus on the Family’s policy arm CitizenLink and a former Bush Administration staffer, the panel focused on attacking the health care reform law, Planned Parenthood, and Republicans who aren’t categorically anti-choice.

According to Goeglein, “the pro-life movement is becoming younger,” and the panel featured young leaders like Anna Franzonello of Americans United for Life, Kristan Hawkins of Students for Life, and activist Erin DeLullo.

Goeglein tried to balance his belief that the anti-choice movement was gaining support and energy with his fear that social conservatives may devolve into political obscurity and lose their place in the broader right-wing coalition. He said that smear-artist Lila Rose represents a “new generation” of the movement, but also anxiously insisted that the “pro-life and pro-traditional marriage” positions must “remain central to the conservative movement.”

DeLullo made the case that the anti-choice community needs to quickly mobilize against Republicans like Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels who proposed a “truce” on social issues. She maintained that the Club for Growth, a pro-corporate group best known for funding primary opponents against more moderate Republican incumbents, should serve as a model for a “permanent political organization” that is “dedicated fulltime to make sure the ‘anti-life’ vote is as suicidal as a vote to raise taxes.” “The right to life cannot be put on the backburner,” DeLullo said, arguing that the group must act now to stop “‘trucers’ like Mitch Daniels.” Of course, there are already a plethora of social conservative political action committees, but maybe DeLullo was making a plug for her own firm.

AUL’s Franzonello claimed that “abortion is the ultimate exploitation of women,” and discussed her vehement opposition to emergency contraception and legal exceptions for cases of rape and incest. She also floated the “death panel” conspiracy theory about health care reform, saying that the law jeopardizes the lives of “elderly and disabled persons,” along with pushing the debunked claim that it promotes taxpayer-subsidized abortions.

Later, Hawkins of Students for Life, a self-declared “abortion abolitionist,” discussed ways anti-choice groups can drive the conservative movement. She noted that while young voters tend to generally hold liberal and Democratic-leaning views, they tend to be more opposed to reproductive rights than prior generations. The abortion issue, Hawkins argued, gives right-wing organizations an opening among young voters. Hawkins said that young voters are increasingly opposed to legal abortion because “Planned Parenthood nearly snuffed us out of existence,” and then allegedly tried to coerce young women on college campuses to have abortions.

Hawkins lavished praise on “prayer warriors” and Lila Rose, calling her “a modern day muckraker” who will “go down in history” for her role smearing Planned Parenthood. She said that young anti-choice activists should embrace Rose’s tactics in order to get the attention of Republican politicians and Fox News, saying, “We can drive their agenda.”

CPAC Anti-Choice Panel Pledges to "Drive" GOP's Agenda

CPAC’s anti-abortion rights panel “The Pro-Life Movement: Plans and Goals” was galvanized over the election of a Republican-led House, believing that the GOP leadership was committed to passing anti-choice legislation.

Hosted by Tim Goeglein, the head of Focus on the Family’s policy arm CitizenLink and a former Bush Administration staffer, the panel focused on attacking the health care reform law, Planned Parenthood, and Republicans who aren’t categorically anti-choice.

According to Goeglein, “the pro-life movement is becoming younger,” and the panel featured young leaders like Anna Franzonello of Americans United for Life, Kristan Hawkins of Students for Life, and activist Erin DeLullo.

Goeglein tried to balance his belief that the anti-choice movement was gaining support and energy with his fear that social conservatives may devolve into political obscurity and lose their place in the broader right-wing coalition. He said that smear-artist Lila Rose represents a “new generation” of the movement, but also anxiously insisted that the “pro-life and pro-traditional marriage” positions must “remain central to the conservative movement.”

DeLullo made the case that the anti-choice community needs to quickly mobilize against Republicans like Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels who proposed a “truce” on social issues. She maintained that the Club for Growth, a pro-corporate group best known for funding primary opponents against more moderate Republican incumbents, should serve as a model for a “permanent political organization” that is “dedicated fulltime to make sure the ‘anti-life’ vote is as suicidal as a vote to raise taxes.” “The right to life cannot be put on the backburner,” DeLullo said, arguing that the group must act now to stop “‘trucers’ like Mitch Daniels.” Of course, there are already a plethora of social conservative political action committees, but maybe DeLullo was making a plug for her own firm.

AUL’s Franzonello claimed that “abortion is the ultimate exploitation of women,” and discussed her vehement opposition to emergency contraception and legal exceptions for cases of rape and incest. She also floated the “death panel” conspiracy theory about health care reform, saying that the law jeopardizes the lives of “elderly and disabled persons,” along with pushing the debunked claim that it promotes taxpayer-subsidized abortions.

Later, Hawkins of Students for Life, a self-declared “abortion abolitionist,” discussed ways anti-choice groups can drive the conservative movement. She noted that while young voters tend to generally hold liberal and Democratic-leaning views, they tend to be more opposed to reproductive rights than prior generations. The abortion issue, Hawkins argued, gives right-wing organizations an opening among young voters. Hawkins said that young voters are increasingly opposed to legal abortion because “Planned Parenthood nearly snuffed us out of existence,” and then allegedly tried to coerce young women on college campuses to have abortions.

Hawkins lavished praise on “prayer warriors” and Lila Rose, calling her “a modern day muckraker” who will “go down in history” for her role smearing Planned Parenthood. She said that young anti-choice activists should embrace Rose’s tactics in order to get the attention of Republican politicians and Fox News, saying, “We can drive their agenda.”

Republican Congressmen Embrace Lila Rose and Live Action’s Hoax Videos

Live Action’s ongoing smear campaign against Planned Parenthood, where actors playing a pimp and a prostitute used hidden cameras to try to dupe clinic staffers into a sex trafficking ring, has ran into numerous hurdles. The radical group’s videos have found to be heavily doctored and actually show clinic workers acting properly and lawfully. In fact, before Live Action even released the edited tapes, Planned Parenthood alerted the FBI about visitors who sought advice for “underage girls who were part of a sex trafficking ring.” Live Action is led by anti-choice radical Lila Rose, who previously collaborated with notorious trickster James O’Keefe and likes to compare herself to Martin Luther King Jr. Rose also has a long history of deceptively editing videos.

But the Religious Right and leading Republicans have increasingly embraced Rose and her hoax videos, and Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN) is using the discredited videos to promote his bill that would end federal funding of Planned Parenthood, imperiling women’s health services.

Tomorrow, leading GOP congressmen plan to join Rose and Pence to demand Congress strip Planned Parenthood of its funding. Congressmen Jean Schmidt (R-OH), Virginia Foxx (R-NC) , Vicky Hartzler (R-MO) , Renee Ellmers (R-NC), Ann Marie Buerkle (R-NY), and Andy Harris (R-MD) will speak with Rose and Pence, along with Marjorie Dannenfelser of Susan B. Anthony List and Penny Nance of Concerned Women for America.

All of the Congressmen mentioned have a long history with extreme anti-choice activism:

Schmidt railed against reproductive rights in a speech to 1st graders in an elementary school; Buerkle served as the spokesperson for the extreme group Operation Rescue; Hartzler backed bills that would compel women seeking an abortion to view their sonograms and even supported legislation that would force the state to file murder charges against women and their doctors if they performed a late-term abortion; Foxx wants to ban emergency contraception like RU-486 and Ella; Harris wanted to allow pharmacists to refuse contraception to customers and challenged a moderate pro-choice Republican incumbent in 2008, and Ellmers is an avowed opponent of legal abortion who recently justified receiving taxpayer-subsidized health care by claiming that Washington DC is too expensive to live in with a $174,000 per year salary, while pushing to defund health services for low-income women.

But having such an extreme group of anti-choice congressmen standing with Rose is no surprise, as Rose herself has called for abortions to “be done in the public square.”

Republican Congressmen Embrace Lila Rose and Live Action’s Hoax Videos

Live Action’s ongoing smear campaign against Planned Parenthood, where actors playing a pimp and a prostitute used hidden cameras to try to dupe clinic staffers into a sex trafficking ring, has ran into numerous hurdles. The radical group’s videos have found to be heavily doctored and actually show clinic workers acting properly and lawfully. In fact, before Live Action even released the edited tapes, Planned Parenthood alerted the FBI about visitors who sought advice for “underage girls who were part of a sex trafficking ring.” Live Action is led by anti-choice radical Lila Rose, who previously collaborated with notorious trickster James O’Keefe and likes to compare herself to Martin Luther King Jr. Rose also has a long history of deceptively editing videos.

But the Religious Right and leading Republicans have increasingly embraced Rose and her hoax videos, and Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN) is using the discredited videos to promote his bill that would end federal funding of Planned Parenthood, imperiling women’s health services.

Tomorrow, leading GOP congressmen plan to join Rose and Pence to demand Congress strip Planned Parenthood of its funding. Congressmen Jean Schmidt (R-OH), Virginia Foxx (R-NC) , Vicky Hartzler (R-MO) , Renee Ellmers (R-NC), Ann Marie Buerkle (R-NY), and Andy Harris (R-MD) will speak with Rose and Pence, along with Marjorie Dannenfelser of Susan B. Anthony List and Penny Nance of Concerned Women for America.

All of the Congressmen mentioned have a long history with extreme anti-choice activism:

Schmidt railed against reproductive rights in a speech to 1st graders in an elementary school; Buerkle served as the spokesperson for the extreme group Operation Rescue; Hartzler backed bills that would compel women seeking an abortion to view their sonograms and even supported legislation that would force the state to file murder charges against women and their doctors if they performed a late-term abortion; Foxx wants to ban emergency contraception like RU-486 and Ella; Harris wanted to allow pharmacists to refuse contraception to customers and challenged a moderate pro-choice Republican incumbent in 2008, and Ellmers is an avowed opponent of legal abortion who recently justified receiving taxpayer-subsidized health care by claiming that Washington DC is too expensive to live in with a $174,000 per year salary, while pushing to defund health services for low-income women.

But having such an extreme group of anti-choice congressmen standing with Rose is no surprise, as Rose herself has called for abortions to “be done in the public square.”

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 1/25/11

Michele Bachmann

SOTU: Plans to give her own State of the Union Response to a Tea Party Express rally, even though Wisconsin Rep. Jim Ryan is the official Republican speaker (Star Tribune, 1/24).

History: Maintains that skin color didn’t matter in early America at an Iowans for Tax Reform event (TPM, 1/24).

Religious Right: Addressed the “March for Life” Rose Dinner (Politico, 1/24).

Iowa: “Encouraged” by reception at Iowa events (Des Moines Register, 1/22).

Religious Right: Set to attend a meeting of Iowa’s The Family Leader, led by Bob Vander Plaats (RWW, 1/20).

Newt Gingrich

2012: Considering a presidential bid with a campaign based in Georgia (AJC, 1/21).

Religious Right: Set to attend a meeting of Iowa’s The Family Leader, led by Bob Vander Plaats (RWW, 1/20).

Rudy Giuliani

2012: Floats potential presidential bid despite 2008 defeat (TPM, 1/25).

Palin: Claims that a Palin candidacy would increase his chance of running (WSJ, 1/21).

Mike Huckabee

Debates: Won’t attend early debates in order to preserve his summer deadline (Politico, 1/24).

2012: Must decide whether to give up media “mini-empire” for a presidential run (LA Times, 1/21).

Sarah Palin

Texas: Spoke about how Alaska and Texas are both “good beacons of freedom” at a fundraiser for the Lubbock Christian School (Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, 1/25).

Media: Dana Milbank proposes a month-long media boycott of covering Palin (WaPo, 1/21).

Tim Pawlenty

Book: Releases video advertisement promoting new book, Courage to Stand (TPM, 1/24).

Religious Right: Set to attend a meeting of Iowa’s The Family Leader, led by Bob Vander Plaats (RWW, 1/18).

Mike Pence

Religious Right: Addressed the “March for Life” in Washington, DC (Politico, 1/24).

GOP: May be able to unite economic and social conservatives better than Mike Huckabee (Religion Dispatches, 1/21).

South Carolina: Group of South Carolina state legislators launches a “Draft Pence” effort (RWW, 1/20).

Mitt Romney

Poll: Leads all other rivals in national poll of Republican voters with 24% (Rasmussen Reports, 1/24).

New Hampshire: Wins New Hampshire GOP straw poll (Christian Science Monitor, 1/22).

Health Care: Rove says Romney must respond to criticisms about his health care reform law in Massachusetts (Political Wire, 1/20).

Rick Santorum

Reproductive Rights: Defends criticism of Obama’s views on choice in an Op-Ed for the National Review (NRO, 1/24).

Iowa: Set to attend a meeting of Iowa’s The Family Leader, led by Bob Vander Plaats (RWW, 1/20).

Religious Right: Uses Obama’s race to attack his stance on abortion-rights, slams gay adoption (RWW, 1/19).

John Thune

Tea Party: May have trouble with Tea Party voters over his support for ethanol industry subsidies (The Argus Leader, 1/23).

New Hampshire: Thune fundraisers “making calls in New Hampshire on Thune’s behalf” (The Argus Leader, 1/21).

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Reproductive Rights Posts Archive

Tory Roberts, Friday 06/28/2013, 4:09pm
Texas Republican state senator Dan Patrick is not impressed by Wendy Davis. Despite Davis’ all day filibuster of an anti-choice bill, Patrick thinks he is the one that deserves the praise. Patrick, the sponsor of the bill, told Mike Huckabee today that he urged his fellow Republicans to break Senate tradition and stop the filibuster. He compared his action to Jesus’ criticism of the Pharisees for placing too much importance on “laws and rules.” Patrick went on to encourage other senators to similarly cast off the law, asking, “Are we going to become the modern... MORE
Miranda Blue, Monday 04/29/2013, 11:25am
Right-wing talk show host Kevin McCullough has a column in the American Family Association-affiliated One News Now today, cleverly titled “Barack Hussein Gosnell.” McCollough’s argument is that President Obama, by speaking at Planned Parenthood recently, is morally equivalent to accused murderer Kermit Gosnell. McCullough claims that “every woman I’ve ever spoken to on the matter” agrees with him that Planned Parenthood is not “helpful to women.” Instead, he writes, “They say they give women choices -- which they interpret to mean,... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Monday 03/25/2013, 11:46am
Last week, Mat Staver and Matt Barber hailed legislation passed in North Dakota and elsewhere aimed at dramatically curtailing the availability and legality of abortion, with Barber proclaiming that Roe v Wade was no different than the infamous Dred Scott decision, calling them "twin bookends of evil" and "shameful decisions that are a blight on America's history": MORE
Miranda Blue, Friday 12/14/2012, 2:59pm
Former Susan G. Komen executive Karen Handel, the Georgia Republican politician who has been largely credited with the cancer charity’s disastrous decision last year to withdraw its grants to Planned Parenthood, spoke yesterday to the Family Research Council. Promoting her book about the episode, “Planned Bullyhood,” Handel accused Planned Parenthood of launching an “unprecedented, premeditated, Mafia-style assault” on Komen. Further, she alleges that Planned Parenthood “literally co-opted the color pink” from Komen in a sinister “bait and... MORE
Brian Tashman, Wednesday 09/05/2012, 5:00pm
Eagle Forum founder Phyllis Schlafly yesterday spoke to the American Family Association’s Sandy Rios to denounce the Democratic National Platform’s support for reproductive freedom and marriage equality. According to Schlafly, “the feminists completely control the Obama administration” and “whatever the feminists want, the feminists get,” including endorsements of abortion rights and same-sex marriage. There is “support of everything the feminists want,” Schlafly lamented, “It’s a very destructive force in our society.” Rios... MORE
Brian Tashman, Tuesday 09/04/2012, 11:45am
While appearing on televangelist Kenneth Copeland’s Believer’s Voice of Victory, disgraced pseudo-historian once again used his platform on Copeland’s show to deliver an attack on gay rights and women’s rights, this time saying that marriage equality and reproductive rights lead to a nation’s destruction. “If a nation says, ‘hey, we want abortion, we want homosexual marriage,’ it is going down,” Barton said, “anytime you move away from what God says, you are going down as a nation.” Watch: Copeland: I don’t care who... MORE
Brian Tashman, Monday 08/13/2012, 12:00pm
In the 2004 presidential election, President Bush used “dog whistle” politics during a debate with John Kerry by subtly linking the Dred Scott case to Roe v. Wade. This year, Republican vice presidential pick Paul Ryan is more explicit about his views. He supported a bill to outlaw all abortions and some contraceptives, and in 2010 he said that the “the Supreme Court made virtually the identical mistake” in Roe v. Wade that it made in the 1857 Dred Scott case: Yet, identifying who “qualifies” as a human being has historically proved to be more difficult... MORE