Pro-Life Group to Supporters: "Don't Vote For Democrats"
In what is a first for any Hoosier pro-life group, the Indiana Right to Life Political Action Committee has made the decision not to endorse any Democrats running for the Indiana House of Representatives this November. Right to Life explained their decision noting that, "every single bill publicly supported by IRTL since the passage of the 1997 partial-birth abortion ban has been killed in the Indiana House under Democratic leadership including pro-life legislation first passed by the Indiana Senate."
They point out that when Republicans were in the majority and Rep. Brian Bosma was Speaker of the House in 2005 and 2006, six bills publicly supported by IRTL were allowed votes and passed in that chamber. This is in stark contrast to what happens when Democrats hold the majority in the Indiana House. Mike Fichter, President of Indiana Right to Life PAC explained, "For years we have tried to work with Democrat leadership in the House to secure straight up-or-down votes on legislation backed by Indiana Right to Life. Each year is the same: our legislation is assigned to a committee chairperson who kills the legislation by not allowing a vote. It has been made forcefully clear to us that if we wish to pass legislation that will save hundreds if not thousands of lives, we must have a Republican-controlled House."
Mike Fichter noted that defending life should be a bi-partisan effort and that there are many pro-life Democrats in the Indiana House, but when Democrats are in the majority their leadership actively works against their own member's pro-life views.
This is a bold and controversial public move for a single-issue political action committee. This decision was reported on the front page of Indiana Legislative Insight, a well-respected political report widely read by political insiders in Indianapolis. I am sure it made some waves inside the Republican and Democrat State Party headquarters, but I wonder if it made any impact upon the number one culprit behind IRTL's decision: Democrat Speaker of the House, Patrick Bauer in South Bend.