by Steven Ertelt
February 11, 2007
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Senator Barack Obama, an Illinois Democrat, officially launched his presidential bid on Saturday attempting to link himself to Abraham Lincoln. Obama made his announcement in the Illinois State capital, where Lincoln got his own political start.
Lincoln launched his own presidential campaign during a time of war when detractors said he was too inexperienced
"[I]n the shadow of the Old State Capitol, where Lincoln once called on a house divided to stand together, where common hopes and common dreams still live, I stand before you today to announce my candidacy for President of the United States of America," he told a cheering crowd.
However, unlike Lincoln, Obama has been criticized for not protecting the weaker members of society.
Obama has a 0 percent pro-life voting record according to the National Right to Life Committee. He has voted to spend taxpayer dollars to fund groups that perform or promote abortions in other countries and voted twice against parental notification and consent.
He also has voted to force taxpayers to pay for embryonic stem cell research, which involves the destruction of human life.
As a result of his consistent support for abortion — even voting against a measure to prohibit taxpayer funding of it — Obama received a 100 percent rating from the Illinois Planned Parenthood Council when he was an Illinois state legislator.
Obama has become the media darling of the Democratic Party, with glowing news articles about grassroots activists gushing over the first-term African-American lawmaker.
But whether the inexperienced legislator with a light record of accomplishments can attract enough support to capture the party’s nomination for president in 2008 is another question.
He is seen as a national candidate with considerable media support but a largely unknown voting record. As a result, pro-life groups are likely to begin seizing on his votes and using them to show how Obama is out of the mainstream with most Americans.
In fact, his announcement was greeted by pro-life advocates and protesters who say he’s not fit to become president because he favors legalized abortion.
Joseph Scheidler, director of the Pro-Life Action League, highlights how Obama went further than some abortion advocates by voting against the Illinois Born Alive Infants Protection Act, which requires proper medical care and treatment for babies who are born alive after a botched abortion.
"Such extraordinary disregard for the lives of the most helpless members of our society disqualifies Obama from serving as our President," Scheidler said in a statement sent to LifeNews.com.
Before the vote on the born alive bill, Jill Stanek, a Chicago-area nurse discovered that staff at the hospital where she worked were leaving newborn babies to die if they were not successfully killed during an abortion.
Aghast at the practice, state lawmakers proposed a bill to make sure babies received proper medical care and treatment following failed abortions.
As a lawmaker from the Windy City, Obama voted against the modest measure, claiming it would pose problems for the status of legalized abortion in general.
"It would essentially bar abortions because the equal protection clause does not allow somebody to kill a child, and if this was a child then this would be an anti-abortion statute," Obama said during a state Senate debate in 2001, according to an AP report.
Obama eventually tried to counter the criticism of his vote on his own in 2004 when running for the Senate seat he currently occupies. He said he would have voted for a federal bill that accomplished similar goals as the Illinois legislation.