Congressman Steve Driehaus of Cincinnati tried to shut down the election efforts of the pro-life group Susan B. Anthony List.
Driehaus filed a complaint with the Ohio Elections Commission for what he claimed was a “false statement” from the SBA List in billboards in his district they hoped to purchase saying he voted for taxpayer funding of abortions because of his pro-ObamaCare vote.
The commission has yet to issue a final decision on the complaint, which could see SBA List officials serve jail time or incur fines for violating an obscure state law against lying about political candidates.
But Driehaus’ vengeful efforts may have backfired, as it put more emphasis on his vote for the abortion-funding takeover of the health care system and he ultimately lost to Chabot, who championed the partial-birth abortion ban in the House during his previous tenure in Congress, by a 52-45 percentage point margin.
SBA List president Marjorie Dannenfelser told LifeNews.com in a statement: “Ohio voters proved that Members of Congress who finesse or ignore the deeply held values of their constituents lose their title ‘Representative’ in principle and in fact.”
“Almost a year ago, our polling in this district revealed strong opposition to federal funding of abortion and significant voter intensity attached to that view. Congressman Driehaus tried to explain away his vote for a health care plan that included such funding and paid the price with pro-life voters,” she said.
She concluded: “Steve Chabot’s victory restores authentic pro-life leadership to the first district of Ohio.”
Marilyn Musgrave, the SBA List spokeswoman told the Washington Examiner it was “notable” that her group saw the “defeat of a member of the U.S. Congress who tried to hide behind an elections commission to oppose what we were saying and limit our free speech.”
After Driehaus filed his complaint, the following week, the SBA List launched an aggressive radio ad campaign entitled “What Steve Driehaus Doesn’t Want You to Hear.” [related]
Driehaus and other so-called “pro-life” Democrats voted in favor of the pro-life Stupak Amendment to the health care bill, but eventually betrayed their constituents by voting in favor of the final bill that did not contain the Stupak Amendment and includes taxpayer funding of abortion.