Two prominent groups opposed to legalized abortion are getting heavily involved in the congressional contest in Minnesota’s 8th District.
The conservative Susan B. Anthony List, a Washington D.C. based Pro-life group, reported spending $32,432 on mailers in opposition to DFL Rep. Jim Oberstar.
Meanwhile, Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life is spending $9417 on mailings on behalf of Oberstar’s GOP opponent, Chip Cravaack. The MCCL endorsed Cravaack last week after backing Oberstar for decades.
The Susan B. Anthony List and the MCCL both say they’re backing Cravaack because of Oberstar’s support for the health care reform law. They say the law would allow federal taxpayers funds to be spent on abortion. At issue is the health exchanges and whether HMOs would be allowed to offer abortion coverage even to people who receive federal subsidies. Oberstar and his campaign staffers argue that there are protections in place to ensure federal funds aren’t spent on abortion (Read more about it on Politfact).
Susan B. Anthony List, which was also a strong supporter of Oberstar in the past, hinted in a March news release that it would make Oberstar’s vote an issue in the upcoming election:
“Congressman Oberstar can no longer call himself ‘pro-life.’ He has set himself with the likes of NARAL, NOW, and Planned Parenthood, and has betrayed his pro-life principles and his constituents. Seventy-four percent of voters in the eighth district oppose taxpayer funding of abortion as part of health care reform, according to a survey commissioned by the Susan B. Anthony List this week. Fifty-six percent of Rep. Oberstar’s constituents surveyed also said that they would be less likely to vote for him next Election Day if he supported healthcare with abortion funding.
The key question is whether voters will continue their practice of routinely sending Oberstar back to Washington or choose to side with the Pro Life groups who now oppose him.