Bart Stupak Says He Plans to Run, Still Faces Pro-Life, Pro-Abortion Opposition

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Apr 8, 2010   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Bart Stupak Says He Plans to Run, Still Faces Pro-Life, Pro-Abortion Opposition

by Steven Ertelt Editor
April 8
, 2010

Washington, DC ( — Congressman Bart Stupak today walked back previous comments suggesting he would retire due to the enormous backlash he’s faced as a result of providing the critical votes needed to pass the pro-abortion health care bill. Stupak now says it is very likely that he will seek re-election in his Michigan district.

Stupak told the Detroit Free Press he has every intention of running again but won’t make a final decision until after he has an obligatory discussion with his family.

Any decision, he said, would come after the April 15 deadline by which his opponents would submit financial statements to the FEC but before the May filing deadline.

Stupak faces strong opposition from both pro-life and pro-abortion candidates but he told the Free Press he loves his job and doesn’t worry about the potential competition.

“I don’t worry about this stuff,” he said, when asked about potential challengers. “I have 18 years of goodwill built up.”

Meanwhile, Michelle Begnoche, Press Secretary for Stupak’s office, told CQ that she couldn’t rule out a retirement, but said "campaign plans are proceeding."

"Every two years, Congressman Stupak discusses with his family and his constituents whether to seek re-election. He believes that is what the people of the First District of Michigan deserve," Begnoche said.

She added in an email to CQ that Stupak has "already acquired over a thousand signatures needed to file for re-election on May 11th" and "is pleased with the outpouring of support across his district."

Stupak is the respected pro-life Democratic leader from Michigan and was said to be considering retiring because he is so exhausted, along with his family, from the bruising repercussions of the abortion and health care debate he may consider quitting.

Stupak had been holding his finger in the dam for months standing with several pro-life Democrats against the health care bill and its massive abortion funding.

But when he and a few of his colleagues decided to trade their votes for an executive order from President Barack Obama that claims to stop abortion funding but doesn’t, Stupak incurred the wrath of the pro-life movement.

The upper peninsula district Stupak holds has been a traditionally Republican one that Stupak has kept because he is a much more conservative Democrat than most.

However, he faces stiff competition from both the left and right as abortion advocates recruited a credible candidate to challenge him in the Democratic primary.

After his perceived sellout on abortion funding, pro-life advocates leapt on the bandwagon of his Republican opponents and they have raised more money and recruited more supporters than they would have otherwise to mount what will be a competitive campaign in November.

Stupak didn’t help his cause after his vote for the pro-abortion bill by attacking pro-life advocates and he has been asked to stop doing so.

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