Toomey Gets Pro-Life Groundswell in Race Against Sen. Specter

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Oct 28, 2003   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Toomey Gets Pro-Life Groundswell in Race Against Sen. Specter

by Steven Ertelt Editor
October 28, 2003

Harrisburg, PA ( — Pro-life leaders throughout Pennsylvania are joining in the effort to help Congressman Pat Toomey in his attempt to unseat U.S. Senator Arlen Specter,
a supporter of legalized abortion and human cloning.

A number of key pro-life lawmakers are endorsing Toomey over Specter for the 2004 Republican Senate primary next April. Legislator Jerry Birmelin, chairman of the House Pro-Life Caucus in the Pennsylvania General Assembly, joined with other pro-life leaders and activists last week in voicing his support for Toomey, who has a 100 percent pro-life voting record.

“I am here today,” said Birmelin, “because Pat stands up for human life and stands up for the unborn."

“During his six years in the U.S. House, Congressman Pat Toomey has proven himself to be a shining star in the effort to advance common sense conservative principles‚ĶThese causes are best served by promoting Pat Toomey to the Senate to replace liberal Arlen Specter.”

Congressman Toomey also has the support of the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation Political Action Committee.

“Pro-life Congressman Pat Toomey is continuing to gain ground in his challenge of pro-abortion Senator Arlen Specter,” said PAC director Mary Beliveau.

She said the candidates have widely different views on pro-life issues.

“Toomey believes human life should be protected, opposes the use of tax dollars to pay for abortions, and supports a ban on all human cloning. Senator Specter supports the Roe versus Wade decision which allows abortion on demand, supports the use of tax dollars for abortion, and is sponsoring a bill which would allow human cloning for scientific experimentation,” Beliveau said.

Congressman Toomey himself says that he has no animosity against Senator Specter but notes that they disagree on a number of key issues, including the life issues. Congressman Toomey notes that Senator Specter would work to block some pro-life judicial appointments because of his outspoken support for legal abortion.

“This is the first time in 70 years that the Republicans have been given a chance to govern the United States,” Congressman Toomey said. “We have a majority in the Senate and House plus a good President in the White House. It is also a chance to advance the conservative causes such as limited government and pro-life views.”

Toomey notes that a House-passed ban on human cloning has stalled in the Senate, due, in part, to Specter’s efforts.

"The opponents want to have cloning for experimentation and medical benefits that show no promise," Congressman Toomey said. "They want to create human life with the intent of destroying it. That is unconscionable – Specter is on the wrong side of this issue."

The Specter-Toomey race has received a great deal of national attention.

A number of leading conservative magazines have sharply criticized Specter for his record — not a surprise, given the fact that a number of his votes are in opposition to his party.

Specter has earned the nickname RINO, which stands for “Republican in Name Only,” as a result of his votes. For instance, while Senator Specter speaks about his support for a ban on partial-birth abortion, he has continued to voice his support for
the U.S. Supreme Court decision which legalized abortion during all stages of pregnancy.

In an effort to secure victory, Specter has been running ads on Christian radio to appeal to conservative voters. But the tactic could backfire. Some Christian radio listeners have been quite vocal in their opposition to the Senator, saying that he has not represented their interests on Capitol Hill.

However, political analysts note that Toomey faces an uphill battle, given Senator Specter’s name recognition and fundraising prowess.

And, despite educational efforts by pro-life groups, some Republican voters continue to believe that Specter is pro-life.

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