Pro-Life Group’s Name Falsely Used to Bash Santorum in Iowa

State   Steven Ertelt   Jan 2, 2012   |   12:42PM    Des Moines, IA

For the second time, people opposed to one of the Republican presidential candidates have misappropriated the name of a prominent Iowa pro-life organization attack the candidate in the state that holds the fist caucus tomorrow.

In December someone used the name of Iowans for Life on fliers distributed at events in the Hawkeye State to attack pro-life former House Speaker Newt Gingrich with claims that he is not prolife on abortion.

Now, Iowans for Life’s name has been falsely attached to fliers disparaging pro-life former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum — who has cruised to a third place standing in the state that leads off the campaign to replace pro-abortion President Barack Obama.

“Iowans for Life has once again been subject to fraudulent use of its name for the purpose of negative rhetoric targeting a candidate in the presidential campaign,” the group told LifeNews on Sunday. “This second deceitful usurping of Iowans for Life’s name was aimed at Senator Rick Santorum.”

“Iowans for Life is not responsible for producing or distributing disparaging material toward Senator Santorum, just as there was no involvement by the organization in the recent negative flyer effort targeting Newt Gingrich at a pro-life event in Des Moines,” the organization added. “As the longest standing pro-life organization in the state, Iowans for Life has a full history of providing education and awareness on the sanctity of human life. This education is fact-based and character attacks are not something the Iowans for Life organization would have any part in.”

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Maggie DeWitte, the executive director of the pro-life group, told LifeNews her organization has contacted the Santorum campaign to let it know the organization is in no way responsible for production or distribution of flyers with a negative message pertaining to Senator Santorum.

“Iowans for LIFE continues to condemn any action taken in the organization’s name without permission, especially for the purpose of disparagement of any individual, as counter-productive to the pro-life cause; as well as cowardly, given the exploitation the organization’s good name is conducted surreptitiously,” she said. “Iowans for LIFE invites anyone with authentic support for the pro-life cause who has any information regarding the individual or group responsible to contact Iowans for LIFE with this information.”

Iowans for Life is not making any endorsement in the race for the Republican nomination but is hoping for a pro-life candidate to be elected in Obama’s place.

“While Iowan’s for LIFE does not endorse specific candidates for election, those candidates for office who genuinely uphold the life issue enjoy the organization’s support and good will,” the group said. “Iowans for LIFE continues to advocate for life and calls for prayer that a pro-life candidate will be elected to the White House in 2012.”

Last month, Santorum restated his support for cutting off federal taxpayer funding for the Planned Parenthood abortion business.

Santorum made a stop at Tabernacle Baptist Church where he emphasized his pro-life views and talked about his efforts during his time as a Pennsylvania senator in the 1990s when he led the battle to ban partial-birth abortions.

“[The abortion] is an inhumanity that should not occur in this country,” Santorum said, according to the Daily Iowan. “[Tax dollars] should not be used for things that are morally objectionable.”

Although Santorum called for ending tax subsidies to the abortion business, Christina Carberry, the president of the Feminist Majority Leadership Alliance at the University of Iowa, told the newspaper she disagreed.

“I think it’s unfortunate that the Republican candidates choose to focus on choosing a right that women have been given as opposed to talking about other major issues in our country like the economy,” Carberry said. “We need more funding for Planned Parenthood so it can create jobs for people.”

Santorum has repeatedly called for de-funding the Planned Parenthood abortion business and, earlier this year, told the SBA List pro-life group, “If you look at Planned Parenthood; if you look at the abortion industry…they fight every single regulation every single bit of information that should be given to the patient, they all fight it as an affront to the right of abortion.”