Massachusetts Pro-Abortion Candidate Upset by Emily List’s Campaigning

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Sep 3, 2007   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Massachusetts Pro-Abortion Candidate Upset by Emily List’s Campaigning Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
September 3,

Boston, MA ( — A leading national pro-abortion group is once again upsetting pro-abortion Democratic candidates by getting involved in a contested primary battle. In this case, Emily’s List is backing Niki Tsongas in Massachusetts’ 5th Congressional District election.

But Eileen Donoghue, another pro-abortion candidate, previously sought the group’s backing and is upset they are taking sides in the primary, which won’t occur until next year.

Donoghue is upset that Emily’s List has sent out three mailings for Tsongas in the past week to about 18,000 women in the district.

The Eagle Tribune reports the group wouldn’t say how much it has spent on the mailings but last week it reported spending over $39,000 on Tsongas’ campaign.

“Emily’s List has been trying to buy this election from the start,” Donoghue spokesman Scott Ferson complained to the newspaper. “They are desperate. They know their expensive candidate is going to lose. Now they’re doing whatever it takes to win this election."

However, Emily’s List spokeswoman Ramona Oliver, told the newspaper she thinks the complaints stem from the group not siding with Donoghue.

“I’m somewhat mystified,” she said, explaining that Emily’s List has only supported Tsongas and not opposed Donoghue.

“Yes, we are trying to get Niki elected. That’s what we do. But that’s all. We don’t lobby or have a legislative agenda … It’s not an unusual thing to see an opponent attack a candidate’s strength. That’s what is happening here," she added.

The feud between the candidates isn’t new and other Democrats in the primary who support abortion have claimed Tsongas is weak on promoting abortion.

This isn’t the first time Emily’s List has gotten in trouble for getting involved in a primary election.

The bulldog tactics Emily’s List employs, by trying to control all aspects of one of their candidates’ campaigns, has put off many activists in the Democratic Party. Some Democrats also don’t care for its insistence that only women can be supported.

Peter Deutsch, a Florida congressman who backs abortion, faced pro-abortion candidate Betty Castor in the race for the Democratic nomination for the Senate in 2004.

He says the group "discriminates" against men because it only supports pro-abortion women candidates.

Ellen Malcolm, the head of Emily’s List, retorted, "Every once in a while we get in a primary race where a man says he’s the best woman in the race. I’ve never seen a candidate win with that argument yet. It’s just ridiculous."