Checking In On House Races To Watch


The presidential election isn’t the only race with lots at
stake for sexual and reproductive rights. 
In Congressional races around the country, supporters of reproductive
health have an opportunity to seize a number of critical seats.

In
Washington state
, Democrat Darcy Burner has been reminding women voters in
the 8th Congressional District that her opponent, incumbent Dave Reichert, has
said he believes that pharmacists should be able to refuse to fill a
prescription for birth control if morally opposed to it.  Reichert is also anti-choice.  But Reichert does have other bona fides women
can support.  Reports the Seattle Times: "Working
Mother magazine gave Reichert a Best of Congress award this year for his voting
record and the family-friendly policies in his office. He won endorsements from
the national and state teachers unions this year because of the education
policies he supports. He’s also part of a bipartisan group working to ease the
nation’s health-care crisis…In 2005, he was the only Republican to vote against
a provision in the Deficit Reduction Act that included a fee paid mostly by
single mothers."

In Colorado’s
4th District, Rep.
Marilyn Musgrave is trailing her pro-choice challenger
, Betsy Markey, by as
many as nine points.  EMILY’s List has
described Musgrave
as "the Sarah Palin of Colorado" because of an ad her campaign has run suggesting Markey
used her position as a "as a congressional staffer years ago to enrich her
information technology company through no-bid government contracts."

Kay Barnes, going after Rep. Sam Graves’s seat in Northwest
Missouri, has been highlighting Graves’s
opposition to the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, SCHIP.  The St.
Joe News-Press
says SCHIP would have covered 8,000 young people in the 6th
District.  Missouri’s
Senator Claire McCaskill is campaigning for Barnes, and says that Graves argued that he supported the President’s veto
because undocumented immigrants could benefit from the program (they can’t).

Marty Ozinga, Republican candidate for 11th District in
Illinois, claimed over the summer that health care is available to all
Americans, and his opponent, State Senator Debbie Halvorson, isn’t going to let
him forget it, reports
ProgressIllinois
.

In Florida,
Rep. Tom Feeney, who has linked to corrupt lobbyist Jack Abramoff, is going to
confront the issue head-on with a new ad "to apologize for his role in the Jack
Abramoff corruption scandal," writes the Orland
Sentinel
.  The ad refers to the 2003
golfing trip Feeney took with Abramoff as a "rookie mistake."  While the ad confronts the scandal directly -
already a target for Feeney’s challenger, Suzanne Kosmas – questions about the
extent of Feeney’s involvement with Abramoff remain.

An anti-choice
independent
wants to attract voters displeased by the support both
candidates for Ohio’s
15th Congressional district have for abortion rights.  Both Democrat Mary Jo Kilroy and Republican
Steven Stivers are pro-choice.  Their
challenger, Don Eckhart, has been endorsed by Ohio Right to Life.  Analysts say Stivers may be more negatively
impacted by Eckhart, as Stivers’s party usually turns out more anti-choice
voters.

Two pro-choice women are squaring off in the Kansas 2nd Congressional
District this fall – incumbent Democrat Rep. Nancy Boyda and Republican State
Treasurer Lynn Jenkins, who beat her anti-choice opponent, Jim Ryan, in the
Republican primary.  (Jenkins was
endorsed by Republican Majority for Choice.) 
Republicans think Boyda is vulnerable, because, as the Hays
Daily News
reports, Republicans "outnumber Democrats
3-to-2 in the eastern Kansas
district."  Boyda is emphasizing her
centrism and attempting to link Jenkins to Republicans in Washington. 
Jenkins characterizes the race as "a dead heat."

Arizona State Senator Tim Bee has
proven an impressive fundraiser in his race against pro-choice freshman Rep.
Gabrielle Giffords, but, notes
CQ Politics
, Giffords has been an impressive fundraiser herself.  Bee has been endorsed by Arizona Right to
Life.

Like this story? Your $10 tax-deductible contribution helps support our research, reporting, and analysis.

To schedule an interview with Emily Douglas please contact Communications Director Rachel Perrone at rachel@rhrealitycheck.org.

  • http://www.davereichertforcongress.com invalid-0

    Hi Emily,

    I’m Congressman Dave Reichert’s campaign communications director. Just wanted to drop a note to thank you for your recognition of Dave’s support for women in the workplace, and his leadership on issues that women care about, including health care and education.

    Additionally, I wanted to make you aware that he is a cosponsor of H.R. 4054, the Prevention Through Affordable Access Act. This is a bill that corrects a different provision in the Deficit Reduction Act. The bill ensures that university health clinics and other safety net health clinics, including Planned Parenthood, are able to purchase contraceptives and other drugs at a discounted price, which restores affordable access to birth control for low-income and other young women.To learn more about Dave Reichert please visit http://www.davereichertforcongress.com.

    A. Halligan
    Communications Director
    Reelect Dave Reichert for Congress

  • invalid-0

    Yup, here in Tucson Tim Bee has REALLY been successful at fundraising. First he had the failed President Bush in to help raise him $500,000. (meanwhile sticking the people of Tucson with the $100,000. bill for security) and here shortly he is having the failed Presidential candidate Fred Thompson in as well. In the case of Tim Bee we have failure, after failure, after failure and nothing more.

    Tim Bee has been endorsed by the Arizona Right to Life, the Center for Arizona Policy, Focus on the Family, Westboro Baptist Church, the Chamber of Commerce (who want illegals here in the U.S.), and other extremist and self serving organizations.

    I think I’ll vote Giffords rather than hate.

  • invalid-0

    The 6th Congressional district of Illinois is currently represented by Rep. Peter Roskam, Mr. Roskam is extreme in his positions on choice and contraception, as well as ab-only sex ed. He doesn’t support a woman’s right to choose even in cases of rape and incest. Mr. Roskam’s predecessor, Mr. Henry Hyde, was also pretty extreme, but Roskam is more to the right than Hyde was. Roskam won his seat in a close race with Iraq war veteran Maj. Tammy Duckworth (less than 2% difference). This time his opponent is another Iraq war vet, Col. Jill Morgenthaler. Col. Morgenthaler is pro-choice, pro-contraceptive and pro-comprehensive sex ed. I live in the 6th and I can tell you that this race will be close – when Obama ran for senate, he won with over 60% in this district (to be fair, his opponent was carpetbagger and career lunatic Alan Keyes), as the Democraitc Presidential candidate he will probably do even better because many of the true conservatives here are not that pleased with McCain, and the more moderate Republicans are not pleased with Roskam. Please help the Illinois 6th get a sensible Democratic representative – and the 1st woman to represent us EVER – in office, help us put Jill on the Hill!!

  • invalid-0

    with the upcoming election i’ve been searching the internet high and low in order to find out as much as i can about the candidates before voting day. while i was clicking around youtube i found a series of videos starring gary chafetz, who has also written a book on the connections between McCain and Chafetz. the information is totally scandalous!

    you can find these videos by typing in the following url:
    http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=gary+chafetz&search_type=&aq=f