By Susan Brinkmann, OCDS
In spite of the fact that Massachusetts Senator-elect Scott Brown is not pro-life on abortion, the nation’s pro-life leaders say his support of numerous limits on abortion and opposition to abortion funding in health care reform makes his election a victory for life.
“Scott Brown’s success is a win for the majority of American women who demand authentic representation that reflects commonsense pro-life views, like abortion funding restrictions and conscience protections,” said Susan B. Anthony List president Marjorie Dannenfelser.
By contrast, Brown’s opponent, pro-abortion Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley’s “extreme embrace of abortion may have endeared her to EMILY’s List and the abortion lobby, but it did little to win votes . . .,” Ms. Dannenfelser said.
Brown is opposed to tax-payer funding for abortions wants it specifically excluded from health care reform legistlation. He is also opposed to the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA). He supports the ban on partial birth abortion, and has voted in favor of conscience protection, parental consent for minors, Infants Born Alive Protection Act and adult stem cell research.
On the other hand, he describes himself as “pro choice (subject to reasonable limitations)”. He accepts gay marriage in Massachusetts as a settled fact but was one of the few state legislators who voted to let the people decide on the issue by voting on a state marriage amendment that would have defined marriage as between one man and one woman. According to conservative author and pundit, Michelle Malkin, Brown refers to himself as “fiscally conservative and socially conscious.”
NARAL Pro-Choice America vehemently disagrees with those who consider Brown to be “pro-choice.”
“Scott Brown is endorsed by anti-choice groups like Massachusetts Citizens for Life because of his co-sponsorship of waiting periods for abortions, and his record of supporting legislation that would allow hospitals to turn away rape victims seeking emergency contraception,” the organization said in a Jan. 13 press release. “There is no way Scott Brown can honestly call himself a defender of a woman’s right to choose.”
While Brown may not be the ideal pro-life candidate, Father Frank Pavone of Priests for Life says his victory “represents several simple facts about the current state of American politics:
”1. Pendulums swing. The American people, no matter what their political affiliation, are not comfortable with any one party holding supermajorities in Washington.
”2. Americans love freedom. When Washington ignores the will of the people, as the Democratic Party has been doing on so many issues, the people respond at the voting booth to reclaim their own voice.
”3. Elections are the answer. Whether the issue is health care, abortion, or anything else, when the people feel powerless to change the minds of those in power, they change those in power.”
But Family Research Council president Tony Perkins warns pro-life voters not to let the “Republican Establishment” try to convince conservatives that a moderate platform on life and marriage is a recipe for success in 2010.
“Social conservatives held back criticism of Brown’s social views–and, in some cases, openly supported him–because they believe a Brown win fulfills a short term goal of blocking President Obama’s abominable health bill,” Perkins said.
According to polling giant Rasmussen, a survey of 1,000 voters found that Brown’s election was definitely a referendum on ObamaCare with 56 percent saying health care was the number one reason why they voted for Brown.
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