Congressional Republicans Pick Pro-Life Stalwarts as Party Leaders

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Nov 17, 2006   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Congressional Republicans Pick Pro-Life Stalwarts as Party Leaders Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
November 17
, 2006

Washington, DC ( — The Republican caucus in the House of Representatives picked pro-life lawmakers to head their party as they assume the minority position in Congress. The re-elected two of their current pro-life leaders by having John Boehner of Ohio serve as Minority Leader and Roy Blunt of Missouri as Minority Whip.

In a closed-door meeting of House Republicans, Boehner was re-elected in a secret ballot, 168-27 over pro-life Indiana congressman Mike Pence.

Boehner has a 100 percent pro-life voting record according to the National Right to Life Committee. He has voted against abortion and abortion funding but also voted against forcing taxpayers to fund embryonic stem cell research and supported Terri Schiavo’s parents in their bid to have federal courts review their case to stop their daughter’s euthanasia death.

He succeeds Speaker Dennis Hastert as the top GOP leader as Hastert, who is pro-life, declined to run for re-election to his position as the head of the party in the House.

The vote count in the Blunt race was 147-57 as he defeated pro-life Rep. John Shadegg of Arizona.

Blunt also has a 100 percent pro-life voting record, NRLC statistics show and voted the same as Boehner on bioethics issues.

After the elections both of the party’s leaders said it would need to focus on conservative principles like pro-life values in the next session of Congress.

"We need to start by rebuilding the Republican brand," Boehner said. "Republicans need to get back to our core principles and rededicate ourselves to the reform mind-set that put us in the majority 12 years ago."

"Today begins the rebirth of House Republicans’ common sense agenda with a leadership team that is more unified than ever, ready to regain the trust of the American people," Blunt added.

Votes were also held on Friday for other top leadership posts and Adam Putnam of Florida was installed in the No. 3 position of conference chair. Putnam also has a 100% pro-life voting record and voted pro-life on embryonic stem cell research as well.

The strong pro-life records contrast with the pro-abortion and pro-embryonic stem cell research positions of the Democratic leaders.

Members of the Democratic caucus in the House sealed their plan to promote abortion and embryonic stem cell research in the next session of Congress as they picked staunch abortion advocates to lead their party. That means pro-abortion lawmakers will set the agenda of the House for the next two years. Democrats unanimously named pro-abortion California Rep. Nancy Pelosi as the first female Speaker of the House.

Pelosi is a staunch abortion advocate. In the last Congressional session alone, Pelosi compiled a 0 percent pro-life voting record on 10 votes NRLC recorded.

Democrats selected pro-abortion Maryland congressman Steny Hoyer for the number two post. Hoyer, who has a 0 percent pro-life voting record going back to the 1980s, according to the National Right to Life Committee, will become the Majority Leader.

Democrats also selected Rep. James Clyburn of South Carolina as majority whip, their No. 3 post. Campaign chair Rahm Emanuel of Illinois was rewarded with the caucus chair post, the No. 4 position for Democrats, for his efforts in leading the party back into the majority.

Both Clyburn and Emanuel back abortion and forcing taxpayers to fund embryonic stem cell research.

On the Senate side, Republicans turned to two pro-life lawmakers to lead them in the wake of the mid-term elections, which saw voters give pro-abortion Democrats control of the chamber.

Democrats, in the Senate held their leadership elections Tuesday and chose abortion advocates to head their party. Sen. Harry Reid of Nevada was elected as the Majority Leader while abortion advocate Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin will serve in the number two post.