Chad’s Morning Brief: Abbott Campaign Links Wendy Davis to Obamacare, Interesting Vote in Albuquerque Today, & More
Here is your Morning Brief for the morning of November 19, 2013. Give me your feedback below and tune in to The Chad Hasty Show for these and many more topics from 8:30 to 11am. Remember, you can listen online at KFYO.com or on your iPhone/Android with the radioPup App.
Wendy Davis & Obamacare
Is a vote for Wendy Davis, a vote to expand Obamacare in Texas? According to the Abbott Campaign, the answer is yes according to the Houston Chronicle.
Attorney General Greg Abbott’s campaign for governor acknowledged that the federal health care reform law “will surely not be on Vice President Biden’s agenda” as he visits the Port of Houston, but it nevertheless prompted the Republican to release a web video on the topic.
The campaign also used the Biden visit to (once again) seek to tie Sen. Wendy Davis to the Obama administration as she runs for governor, and to slam her position on health care.
Here’s the statement from Abbott campaign spokesman Matt Hirsch:
“As one of Sen. Wendy Davis’ biggest fans travels to Texas today, one topic that will surely not be on Vice President Biden’s agenda is ObamaCare. While Texans have expressed their strong desire to keep ObamaCare out of Texas, Sen. Davis has not been shy in her attempts to expand this disastrous law in the Lone Star State. In the most recent legislative session, Sen. Davis co-authored and voted for a series of amendments designed to impose ObamaCare, and even more offensive to Texans, she co-authored a measure to tap the Rainy Day Fund to expand ObamaCare. Simply put, a vote for Sen. Davis will be a vote to expand ObamaCare in Texas.”
Davis is among senators who sought to find a way to lure billions of dollars available under the federal law for health care for Texas’ needy, uninsured population. She and other Democrats supported expanding Medicaid. A number of top GOP lawmakers also sought to find a way to get the money to insure Texans, although the Republicans didn’t want to do it through Medicaid expansion.
An interesting vote in Albuquerque today as citizens of that city will head to the polls and possibly vote to ban abortion after 20-weeks. What is really interesting about this is that it’s not the State of New Mexico making the change, but possibly a city. According to National Review this could be the first city in America to vote to ban abortion.
Albuquerque is pulling a Texas. A coalition of pro-life activists has managed the improbable: They’ve gotten a ballot measure set for a vote on Tuesday that would ban abortions in the city after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
Their efforts have drawn national attention — as well as national money — and, if successful, would break ground for the pro-life movement by making Albuquerque the first city in the nation with such a ban. It’s not just about making history, though: According to Politico, the city has two of the few clinics in the country that perform late-term abortions, and the measure, if successful, would force them to stop performing the procedures or move elsewhere.
The Susan B. Anthony List, a national pro-life organization, has spent thousands on the effort. It’s sent a campaign manager and field director to the city, and it’s also run TV ads pushing for the measure (including one30-second spot featuring a former abortionist). Executive director Emily Buchanan tells me her organization hopes the Albuquerque effort will inspire nationwide change.
“Pro-lifers in Albuquerque are putting their foot down and saying not here, not in Albuquerque, we don’t want late-term abortion in our city,” she tells National Review Online. “And so we hope it inspires a national movement.”
Town Hall reports that President Obama’s Organizing for Action has campaigned against the measure, and Planned Parenthood and the ACLU are also working against the ban. Despite concerted opposition from abortion advocates, Buchanan says she’s confident pro-lifers will get a win Tuesday.
Part of the reason for that confidence? Activists say they collected 27,000 signatures in just two and a half weeks — and, according to the Albuquerque Journal, they needed only 12,091 to get the measure on the ballot. Sarah Wilson, who helped start the campaign and is vice president of the Catholic Coalition of New Mexico, tells NRO that her group was floored by the outpouring of support.
“It’s no credit to us,” she says of the signature-gathering success. “We were not organized. It just happened. It was amazing. Catholics were pretty convinced it must have been the Holy Spirit.”
“It was a mad rush, but everything happened so perfectly,” she adds.
Catholic and Evangelical congregations have been instrumental through the process. Ninety-six percent of the signatures were gathered after Masses and church services, she says, and many pastors and priests have been very supportive.
Elisa Martinez of Protect Albuquerque Women and Children tells NRO that a core group of about 75 to 100 volunteers has been working phone banks, canvassing, and organizing get-out-the-vote efforts. Part of the idea for the effort, she says, came from a citywide minimum-wage referendum last year; when pro-lifers saw the move’s success, they decided to use the same tool to limit abortions. And, she adds, Texas’s 20-week abortion ban also inspired them.
An abortion clinic’s consent form also has come into play. The website of Martinez’s group links to a PDF of the form that one of the Albuquerque abortion clinics requires women to sign; the form clearly states that having an abortion after 18 weeks is more dangerous than carrying the pregnancy to term.
“It’s a very troubling, very barbaric, very unnecessary procedure that the public needs to continue to have a discourse about and bring to light,” Martinez says.
And Wilson says she hopes the ban, if successful, will put pressure on state legislators to pass a law like Texas’s. Pro-life bills typically die in committee, she notes. But a citywide ban might make lawmakers realize that there’s appetite for change.
Talk about going back to local control! What do you think about this and the other things that cities around the U.S. could take back from bigger government?
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