From the diaries by Erick
Evan Feinberg is running in the Republican primary against Congressman Tim Murphy in Pennsylvania’s 18th Congressional District. Evan’s Web site says unequivocally, “I am pro-life. . . . Simply put, I will always stand on the side of life, both as a member of Congress and as an American citizen.” Outstanding pro-life legislator Senator Tom Coburn, M.D., for whom Evan has worked in the past, endorses him whole-heartedly. Last week, however, the National Right to Life PAC and the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation PAC endorsed Congressman Tim Murphy in his bid for re-election to Congress. Why should these pro-life PACs support Murphy, when Feinberg is unabashedly pro-life, and Murphy is not a consistent pro-life conservative? Why would they do this, when in fact, Murphy is hurting the pro-life movement?
What do I mean? On straightforward issues concerning life, Congressman Murphy has come down publicly on the right side, of course, and has done so for years. Many bills that are not explicitly on “pro-life” subjects, however, have pro-choice implications. Consider the unions. They are almost universally opposed, or, at best, indifferent, to sanctity of life measures, and the politicians and party they support are likewise opposed or indifferent. Legislation that gives unions greater financial clout give these hostile or indifferent politicians greater political clout. Consider “card check”, that Congressman Murphy voted for! This measure would have taken the secret ballot away from employees who were being asked if they wanted to be represented by a union. If it had become law, your decision about union membership might be made at your front door, with three “friends” from work telling you to sign up, as it would be in your best interests. Can we spell intimidation? Card check would have increased membership, coerced members’ dues would fill union coffers, and politically active unions would support those politicians who are indifferent or opposed to the protection of human life. (Since the passing of Obamacare, the “principled pro-life Democrat” seems to have become extinct.)
So when we make the Unions stronger, who do the Unions support? Planned Parenthood Federation of America was given the “Progressive Champion” award for its courageous push-back against conservative efforts to strip government funding for its women’s health clinics at the “2011 Take Back the American Dream Conference.” Sponsors included; NEA, AFL-CIO, United Steel Workers and SEIU. During the 2010 election cycle, over 90% of all union PAC money – almost $60 million – was donated to Democratic candidates, most staunch advocates of abortion. But this is merely union PAC money, big labor spent over $1.4 billion dollars during the 2010 elections. And when you check the Federal Elections Commission Web site, you won’t find very many Republicans besides Congressman Murphy receiving that money.
Congressman Murphy supported other measures that would strengthen unions and thus make protecting life more difficult: Prevailing Wage Laws and Project Labor Agreements (PLAs), the National Labor Relations Board (which bullies employers like Boeing), the unionization of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), union control of military contracts, and the tax-payer bail-out of union pensions. Failing to see the implications of these anti-worker policies, the pro-life PACs have endorsed Murphy in the past, and no doubt brought out zealous pro-life members of the community to volunteer, knock on doors and make phone calls; pushing for Murphy’s re-election. And all this well-meaning support probably helped him get re-elected in the past.
Where two candidates claim justifiably to be pro-life, isn’t it time that pro-life PACs recognize the implications of related issues, and support the candidate who is more consistently pro-life? In PA Congressional District 18, that candidate is Evan Feinberg.
Jeff Steigerwalt is a Pittsburgh entrepreneur and active in a pro-life non-profit in Western Pennsylvania.