This does not imply that Democrats, although pro-choice, are anti-life; most Democrats would personally not have an elective abortion. However, most Democrats believe as a matter of conscience that the "right" of a woman to control her own body is so sacred that it trumps the right of an unborn baby to come into this world. In contrast, most Republicans only accept therapeutic abortion; that is, abortion merely to protect the life or health of the mother, with abortion for rape or incest being a gray frontier.
The Council chose the following four pieces of legislation as litmus tests to reflect a combination of their issues of interest (the official Council position on these issues was a Yes vote):
HB301: A bill to make Alaska law consistent with the current federal ban on partial-birth abortion.
HJR2: A resolution to amend the State constitution to require a majority vote from Alaskans before any gambling for profit can be expanded in the state
HB364: A bill that restores the rights of parents to oversee the health decisions of their children including their right to be involved in their teenage daughters choice to have an abortion.
HJR9: A resolution to amend the State constitution and overturn an Alaska Supreme Court decision that required State and local governments to provide benefits equivalent to marriage to same-sex partners of public employees.
Click HERE to view the complete scorecard. Here are the highlights:
- Nearly all 16 Democratic representatives received either a 25 percent or 33 percent rating. One received a zero.
- Twenty of the 24 Republican representatives received a 100 percent rating.
- Rep. Mike Chenault (R-Nikiski) received a 75 percent rating. He voted No on HJR2, the "gambling" bill. But he voted Yes on the abortion or marriage bills, so I recommend Nikiski voters do NOT hold his No vote on HJR2 against him. He's still "one of us".
- Rep. Mike Hawker (R-Chugach Park) received only a 50 percent rating. He voted No on HJR2, and also on HJR9, which would have strengthened the constitutional definition of marriage. The latter vote is troubling.
- Rep. Paul Seaton (RINO-Homer) received on a 25 percent rating. He voted No on all the bills except for HJR2. He represents Homer; no further explanation required.
- And the fourth; one of our U.S. House candidates, Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux (R-Kodiak). She received a 50 percent rating.
The case of Rep. LeDoux is quite interesting. During her U.S. House campaign, she's persistently postured herself as "pro-life". Yet she not only voted against HJR2, which is of marginal consequence, but she also voted against HB301, which would have banned partial-birth abortion in Alaska by bringing Alaska law in line with Federal law.
This is highly consequential. Partial-birth abortion, to explain it bluntly, is murder. Read about the procedure HERE. You cannot call yourself pro-life and support partial-birth abortion. And why did Rep. LeDoux vote against HB301? Because of a "technicality", as explained by her response to a constituent. This response was posted in April on the Eagle Forum Alaska blog:
From: Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux
Date: 03/28/08 10:36:56
Subject: RE: HB 301 - Partial Birth Abortions
Thank you for writing and expressing your heartfelt opinion. I oppose partial birth abortions except when necessary to protect the life or physical health of the mother. It is my understanding that there are certain rare circumstances where a woman could suffer severe damage if this procedure is not used.
Unfortunately the bill which I voted against did not have an exception for the physical health of the mother. I introduced an amendment to allow the procedure when it was necessary for the physical health of the women. This amendment failed and thus I could not in good conscience vote for the bill.
Representative Gabrielle LeDoux
Capitol, Juneau, Alaska 99801
And here is part of the constituent's response back to Rep. LeDoux:
I have worked for the protection of unborn children for 35 years. There is NEVER a circumstance when the partial birth abortion procedure would be better for the health of the mother. Believe it! A health of the mother exception in other state laws has allowed abortions for no reason at all. The infamous late-term abortionist in Boulder, Colorado, Warren Hern, has boasted that he can certify ANY pregnancy a risk to the mother's health. To leave this kind of determination to the benefiting physician is to sacrifice many, many healthy babies.
By the way, Eagle Forum Alaska has also posted the state legislative candidates' responses to the survey they mailed out. Click HERE to review the Republican responses, and HERE for other candidate responses.