by Steven Ertelt
February 2, 2006
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Members of the Republican Party in the House of Representatives have elected a pro-life Ohio congressman to become the number two leader of the party in the lower chamber of Congress. Rep. John Boehner will take over from pro-life Texas Rep. Tom DeLay.
Boehner defeated pro-life acting Majority Leader Roy Blunt of Missouri and pro-life Arizona congressman John Shadegg.
Shadegg was knocked out on the first ballot when he received 40 votes, Boehner received 79 and Blunt 110. Two members backed pro-life Rep. Jim Ryun of Kansas who was not officially running.
However, Boehner received all of the votes from other candidates and one from Blunt on the second ballot and defeated him on a 122-109 count.
During the campaign for the position, Boehner referred to his pro-life views in a letter to members of the Values Action Team, a group of pro-life lawmakers.
"It is a commitment I have felt deeply throughout my life and a commitment I will uphold unapologetically," he said about his pro-life belief.
In 2005, Boehner compiled a 100% pro-life voting record, according to the National Right to Life Committee, and supported the bill to back Terri Schiavo’s family and voted against using taxpayer funds for embryonic stem cell research.
His 100% pro-life voting record goes as far back as at least 1997, according to the group, and he has voted pro-life on dozens on bills and procedural votes on various abortion and other pro-life issues.
Blunt will retain his post as Majority Whip, the number three leadership position in the party in the House.
After Republicans took over the House from the Democrats in 1994, Boehner was elected chairman of the House Republican Conference, the fourth-ranking leadership post. He lost that position after the 1998 elections favored Democrats.