Illinois Pro-Abortion Candidate Runs for Governor, Draws Criticism

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 1, 2005   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Illinois Pro-Abortion Candidate Runs for Governor, Draws Criticism Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
December 1, 2005

Springfield, IL ( — Illinois State Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka, who backs abortion, declared her candidacy for governor in 2006 with a fly around campaign across the state. Though she supports abortion, pro-abortion groups criticized her entry into the race saying she’s not pure enough.

Topinka would take on pro-abortion Gov. Rod Blagojevich, a Democrat who has angered pro-life groups because of his stance in favor of embryonic stem cell research and because an order he issued forcing pharmacists to distribute the morning after pill.

“I’m not the candidate from central casting,” Topinka told supporters in Springfield. “I think I’m conservative on many issues and I’m moderate on others.”

However, Topinka also said she supports abortion, but with limits — something that puts her at odds with abortion advocacy groups that refuse to compromise.

“A woman has a right to choose, but there has to be some reasonable restrictions on it,” she said.

Pam Sutherland of Planned Parenthood Votes Illinois told the Chicago Tribune, "Over the years when she served in the legislature, there are numerous examples of her flip-flops and multiple-choice positions on major abortion and reproductive issues."

Saying Topinka voted 80 percent of the time against her group, Sutherland said, "I know what our voters think pro-choice is. What does she think?"

Ryan Kilpatrick of Personal PAC told the Quad City Times his group would be looking for more information about her.

“We’re just asking for clarification from Judy Baar Topinka on her position on choice," he said.

Topinka’s stance isn’t earning her favor from abortion advocates but it will turn off pro-life groups, too, who will be looking for another candidate to back in the Republican primaries.

Sen. Bill Brady, R-Bloomington, Sen. Steve Rauschenberger of Elgin and Aurora businessman Jim Oberweis are also in the running.