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Results tagged “Republicans” from Blog for Choice

Where Are All the Pro-Choice Republicans?


This morning when I was reading The Washington Post, an op ed caught my eye.

It is written by Victoria Toensing, who was the deputy assistant attorney general in the Reagan administration. She makes a powerful plea to other pro-choice Republicans to "leave the closet," as she puts it, and to announce themselves as proudly pro-choice.

As the president of a bipartisan organization, I could not agree more. We need more -- many more -- pro-choice Republicans at all levels of government. In fact, the Republican Party used to boast many fearless pro-choice champions. However, in the 2012 cycle, we were not able to endorse one pro-choice Republican for federal office.

I wanted to share her powerful piece, and hope you read and pass it along to your friends.

"Pro-choice Republicans go public"

Victoria Toensing, a Washington lawyer, was deputy assistant attorney general in the Reagan administration.

I am a pro-choice Republican. We are not an endangered species. Since the Republican Party declared itself pro-life, most of us have been in the closet.

I appreciate that both viewpoints are sincerely held: Pro-choicers believe that the government should not intrude in such a private decision; pro-lifers believe that life begins at conception. I have supported each.

Raised Catholic, I accepted the church's doctrine that abortion was morally wrong. This was before Roe v. Wade, so in many states abortion was also illegal. A personal experience changed my view.

Please read the rest of the piece at The Washington Post.

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Remember Tom Corbett?

He's the anti-choice governor of Pennsylvania who had this to say about women who don't want a forced ultrasound:

I don't know how you make anybody watch. You just have to close your eyes.

Think Gov. Corbett might want to "clarify" or walk back those remarks?


Here he is doubling down:

And, of course, Gov. Corbett is a huge supporter of Mitt Romney.

Ever wonder what sort of anti-choice policies Romney would push as president?

Just...close your eyes.

Paid for by NARAL Pro-Choice America,, and not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee.

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NPR Reports on Gingrich-Romney Abortion Fight


Thumbnail image for romney.jpg

NPR has a new story this morning about dueling attack ads that super PACs are running in South Carolina on behalf of former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

Each ad accuses the other candidate of favoring abortion rights in some way.

Would that it were so!

Back in the real world, both Romney and Gingrich oppose a woman's right to choose safe, legal abortion care.

NPR asked Donna Crane, policy director at NARAL Pro-Choice America, to comment on the ads:

The idea that either of these candidates is in any way remotely pro-choice would be laughable, if it weren't actually so dangerous for women. It really is preposterous.

Crane also responded to the charge that, as governor, Romney implemented a program that covered abortion care:

So if the charge is does Massachusetts care for its low-income women, then yes, guilty as charged. Massachusetts has a good policy in that regard. But it's not attributable one way or another to Mitt Romney.

Want a little fact to go with all this campaign nonsense? Check out all the Republican candidates' bad records on choice.

Paid for by NARAL Pro-Choice America,, and not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee.

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From The New York Times:

The "personhood amendment," granting legal rights to human embryos, might have seemed to be a political nonstarter after voters in Mississippi, arguably the most conservative and anti-abortion state in the nation, rejected such a proposal last month. But the idea has not faded in the Republican primaries.

Oh, no, it has not.

Next Tuesday, December 27, Republican presidential aspirants Michele Bachmann, Newt Gingrich, and Rick Santorum will attend a special radio forum hosted by Personhood USA, the extreme anti-choice group pushing these "personhood" measures nationwide.

Memo to candidates: when 58 percent of voters in a state that has one of the worst grades on choice think something's too extreme, it's probably too extreme.

Speaking of 58 percent, that's also the percent of Virginians who oppose a proposed "personhood" bill that anti-choice lawmakers in the Old Dominion have made the first new bill of the opening legislative session.

But it looks like extreme isn't taking a break for the holidays.

P.S. And, if you're around on December 27, please consult our website for info on the presidential candidates.

Paid for by NARAL Pro-Choice America,, and not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee.

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Coming on the heels of Mississippi voters' decisive rejection of Initiative 26, the extreme "personhood" measure, we have more evidence that American voters do not want politicians who attack women's freedom and privacy.

A new poll conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research on behalf of NARAL Pro-Choice America shows that President Obama's pro-choice position is shaping up to be a key asset for him in the 2012 election.

The poll revealed an identified group of women voters who supported the president in 2008 but are currently unsure about supporting his reelection. A large bloc of these voters says they would never vote for anyone running for president who opposes a woman's right to choose, regardless of that candidate's position on other issues.

All of the candidates for the Republican nomination oppose a woman's right to choose.

Al Quinlan, president of Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research, explained the implications of the findings:

There is a group of women who voted for President Obama in 2008 but are not currently supporting him, and these data suggests many of them should be in his camp. Choice provides an opening for President Obama and other Democrats to create a sharp contrast with anti-choice Republicans.

In 2012, we will continue to communicate with voters to highlight the contrast between President Obama and his anti-choice Republican opponents, and ensure that the White House stays safely in pro-choice hands.

Paid for by NARAL Pro-Choice America,, and not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee.

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Rick Perry, Poster Boy for Anti-Choice Lobbyists


Texas Gov. Rick Perry declared his candidacy for president on Saturday, and Americans are quickly learning more about him.

One thing we've learned is that he's extremely hostile to a woman's right to choose. Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, wrote a post here on Blog for Choice highlighting the governor's record on choice. (Hint: it's bad.)

Now we're starting to learn about his anti-choice ties. Only four days into his campaign, and Gov. Perry has agreed to co-chair a gala for Americans United for Life (AUL), according to The American Independent.

AUL is a notorious and radical anti-choice lobbying organization that develops model legislation that's been pivotal in the War on Women. Last year, the AUL showcased Perry's praise for the group's annual report on anti-choice legislation in the states:

This year's AUL legal guide, Defending Life 2010, provides a valuable resource for prolife leaders. This state-by-state scorecard of progress in the effort to defend life lets elected officials, grassroots activists and citizens know exactly where we are on our shared priority. I am proud that the report reflects the sweeping reforms we have enacted in Texas, saving thousands of lives in the process. This is not a book you leave on the shelf to collect dust. This information is ammunition in a fight that is far from over. I know you will find this guide informative and useful as you continue to promote and protect life in your state.

Texas has received an F in our Who Decides? report since Gov. Perry has been in office. So clearly, he has spent a good portion of his time in office taking away a woman's right to choose.

One more thing we've learned about Gov. Perry: whatever he does, he does it big. So when he says he'll push an anti-choice platform, we'd better believe he means it.

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The Rick Perry Primer: His Record on Choice


Gov. Rick Perry (R-Texas) is expected to announce his candidacy for president this weekend.

Perry is Texas' longest-serving governor, having succeeded George W. Bush in 2000, and his nascent campaign is getting a ton of attention. But what do we really know about Rick Perry?

Well, my staff and I have been working to answer that question, sifting through voting records and other material as several individuals declared their intention to run for president. This is part of our work to connect the personal with the political. How a candidate voted on choice or what actions he or she took as governor tell us a lot about what he or she would do if elected president.

In this spirit, we recently analyzed the records of Gov. Perry and 11 other announced and potential GOP presidential candidates.

Gov. Perry's choice-related actions as governor of Texas are dominated by anti-choice positions.

So, what kind of effect do these laws have on women's freedom and privacy?

Many of the laws he signed inject political interference into women's private decision-making. Gov. Perry signed into law a measure that would require women to receive a state-mandated lecture that includes medically inaccurate information before they can access abortion care. He then signed additional legislation amending the law to force some women to make two trips to the provider before receiving abortion care.

Just this year, Gov. Perry signed into law a bill requiring that a woman seeking abortion care undergo an ultrasound--even if she does not want one, and even if her doctor does not recommend it.

He's taken strong stances in support of anti-choice "crisis pregnancy centers" (CPCs). One law he helped to enact established "choose life" license plates, which allocate funding for CPCs. NARAL Pro-Choice Texas has been a leader in documenting how CPCs often mislead, misinform, harass, and intimidate women. A recent investigation found that several CPCs in Texas had racked up numerous safety and privacy violations.

And how's this for supporting anti-choice ideology? Gov. Perry signed a proclamation declaring April 2009 "Abortion Recovery Awareness Month" in Texas. The proclamation claims that abortion "often leads to lasting emotional and mental health problems for the mother..." Perry is not alone in the primary field, as former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty also signed a similar proclamation in his state. This proclamation uses recycled and inflammatory anti-choice rhetoric that's out of step with sound science. Just check out the studies that have examined the wide range of complex experiences and feelings women have regarding abortion.

We have talked a lot about our concerns with Gov. Perry's record, but I assure you that we report the good and the bad. Gov. Perry has taken a couple of pro-choice actions. For example, Gov. Perry signed into law a measure that improves sex education for young people. And in 2003, he enacted a law ensuring that health plans that cover prescription medication also cover birth control. However, Perry effectively reversed this law two years later when he signed into law a measure allowing insurers to offer two health plans to employers--one plan that guarantees coverage of all mandated services, including contraception, and another that does not.

It would be interesting for reporters surrounding him in South Carolina, New Hampshire, and Iowa to ask him his thoughts on the Department of Health and Human Services' recent decision to accept medical experts' recommendation that insurance plans cover contraception without an additional copay.

A handful of pro-choice actions aside, the prospect of President Perry should make us very worried. He has made inflammatory statements indicating how he would govern as an anti-choice president, calling Roe v. Wade "a shameful footnote in our nation's history books" and "a stark reminder that our culture and our country are still in peril."

Let's not forget that the president has tremendous influence over reproductive-health policy in the United States. How much influence? See our publication, The Powers of the President: Reproductive Freedom and Choice.

As the 2012 campaign heats up, NARAL Pro-Choice America will continue to be your source for analysis of Gov. Perry and the other announced and potential Republican candidates.

For now, as the media hoopla surrounds Gov. Perry, we encourage Americans who value freedom and privacy to share this information with friends and family. It's never too early to take a look at the record of someone who wants to live in the White House.

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What Could Happen Under an Anti-Choice President?


Ever heard a politician say, "It doesn't matter if Roe v. Wade is overturned--it'll just mean states get to decide"?

As the 2012 presidential campaign heats up, we'll likely hear that more than a few times--maybe even in Thursday's GOP debate in Iowa.

In a new piece on The Huffington Post, Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, explains just what could happen if an anti-choice president appointed Supreme Court justices who overturned Roe.

It's bad-news bears.

See what Nancy has to say.

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It's just over six months until the Iowa caucuses, and the Republican candidates for president are already jockeying for position. They're also in a grudge-match to see who can be the most hostile to a woman's right to choose.

Yesterday, NARAL Pro-Choice America released its research on 12 announced and potential GOP candidates--and leading media organizations are reporting on what they discovered. 

For instance, which two of the candidates signed pro-choice bills into law? We've put all the coverage in one place, so you can find out the answer to this question and more! 

OK, this shouldn't come as much of a surprise. But the abortion-rights group NARAL Pro-Choice America says that none of the declared Republican candidates for president -- nor any of those thought to be waiting in the wings -- would pass muster with voters who support a woman's right to choose....

There is a big difference from 2008, however, when it comes to birth control.

For the first time, many, if not most of the candidates have come out not just for the defunding of Planned Parenthood (which is at least arguably about abortion). Some have also voted against -- and spoken out against -- any kind of federal funding for contraception.

Of the approximately 15 Republicans who have either announced or hinted a run for president in 2012, the abortion-rights policy group NARAL Pro-Choice has identified the 12 most prominent potential contenders as presenting a threat to women's access to abortion and family-planning services.

On Thursday, NARAL policy directors briefed reporters on a new report analyzing the records and statements of current GOP candidates, released just before the Ames Straw Poll in Iowa on Aug. 13. It is the first phase of the organization's election-related analysis, said NARAL Communications Director Ted Miller.

NARAL LOOKS AT GOP FIELD-- Spoiler alert! They don't like any of them. At a briefing with reporters yesterday, abortion-rights group NARAL looked at 12 declared or potential Republican presidential candidates and their history on abortion and reproductive rights issues. All of the contenders have announced themselves to be firmly anti-abortion with a few voting or policy exceptions that NARAL considers to be "pro-choice." For instance, former Govs. Jon Huntsman and Tim Pawlenty both signed into law bills that would allow sexual assault victims access to emergency contraception. But when it comes down to Election Day, "they're all equally unacceptable," said policy director Donna Crane.

Which of the Republican presidential candidates vetoed legislation that would require doctors to provide emergency contraception to rape victims?

It was then Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. (The state legislature went on to pass it over his veto.)

Which 2012 GOP contender signed a similar measure into law? It was actually two of them--Tim Pawlenty in Minnesota in 2007 and Jon Huntsman in Utah in 2009.

These are among the facts in an assessment of the Republican presidential wannabes released by NARAL, the national pro-choice advocacy group. The organization examined the records of 12 candidates--some announced and some still teasing--and though a few have occasionally made moves slightly supportive of women's reproductive rights, all of the candidates received a failing grade. This was no shocker.

"They're all unacceptable for pro-choice voters," said Ted Miller, NARAL's communications director. He declined to rank them.

As Ted said, this is just the beginning of our analysis on the 2012 election. Keep checking back for facts as this race heats up.

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A Tale of Two Amendments


Yesterday, the U.S. House of Representatives passed an extreme amendment offered by anti-choice Rep. Virginia Foxx of North Carolina that dictates what doctors and medical students can and can't learn about providing abortion care. 

In a story that quotes NARAL Pro-Choice America, The Associated Press calls the Foxx amendment "the latest in a series of anti-abortion measures pushed by the Republican majority."

The House Committee on Rules blocked an amendment from going to vote on Wednesday that would have allowed military rape victims to access abortion care through their government-provided health plans.

Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, called the House leadership's actions outrageous:

Apparently Speaker John Boehner and his allies believe that women who put their lives on the line for their country should face more obstacles than women stateside when it comes to making personal, private decisions. It is unconscionable.

Just when you thought the House leadership's attacks on women's freedom and privacy couldn't get any more extreme, they go and outdo themselves.

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Just when you thought the attacks on women's health couldn't get any more extreme, the anti-choice leadership of the U.S. House of Representatives opened up a new front.

More media outlets are reporting that H.R.3, the dangerous "Stupak on Steroids" bill, could subject survivors of rape and incest who choose abortion to audits by the Internal Revenue Service:

These outrageous "abortion audits" would place the burden of proof on the woman:

Under standard audit procedure, a woman would have to provide evidence to corroborate facts about abortions, rapes, and cases of incest, says Marcus Owens, an accountant and former longtime IRS official. If a taxpayer received a deduction or tax credit for abortion costs related to a case of rape or incest, or because her life was endangered, then "on audit [she] would have to demonstrate or prove, ideally by contemporaneous written documentation, that it was incest, or rape, or [her] life was in danger," Owens says. "It would be fairly intrusive for the woman."

This shocks the conscience. Members of the anti-choice House leadership campaigned on promises of less government intrusion in our personal, private lives. Now these same politicians are making it so that rape survivors will have to relive their horrifying experiences with an agent from the IRS.

As extreme as this "Stupak on Steroids" bill is, it now has 221 co-sponsors--more than enough votes to pass the House!

We're calling on the co-sponsors of H.R.3 to explain to their constituents why they want to give the IRS authority to audit rape survivors. In particular, we're focusing on these seven representatives:

Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle of New York
Rep. Sean Duffy of Wisconsin
Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania
Rep. Dan Lipinski of Illinois
Rep. Dan Lungren of California
Rep. Steve Stivers of Ohio
Rep. Tim Walberg of Michigan

If you live in one of these members' districts, call your representative. Ask why he or she wants the IRS to conduct abortion audits of rape survivors.

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