EMILY’s List endorsed candidate Democrat Kathy Hochul won the New York special election last night, defeating Republican Jane Corwin and Tea Party candidate Jack Davis. The race was seen as many as a reflection on the current discontent with the Republican plan to end Medicare and change it to a voucher program, but there was another dynamic at play as well.
Just as many analysts saw the special election to replace Senator Edward Kennedy in Massachusetts as the bellweather of the Republican wave that became the 2010 election year, the same pundits wonder if the Hochul win also forecasts the growing resentment with Republican policies to ravage the social safety net in order to keep tax breaks for millionaires intact.
One group that played a small part in both special elections? The National Right to Life Committee, who endorsed Republican Scott Brown despite his somewhat pro-choice record, and this year did the same for Jane Corwin. Right to Life groups who were so rigid when it came to abortion stances that they targeted sitting Democrats who were anti-choice simply for voting for health care reform suddenly had no issue with endorsing a woman who believes women have the right to an abortion in the first trimester.
The group stood behind its endorsement, saying that Corwin supports defunding Planned Parenthood, baning federal dollars from abortion, and parental notification laws. But in reality, it’s simple to see that the endorsement hinged entirely on one thing — her party. That the group could go from campaigning against anti-choice Democrats like Rep. Bart Stupak, the man who almost single-handedly ended health care reform by demanding that poor women not be allowed to access abortions, to supporting a Republican woman who believes abortions can sometimes be allowed, all within a matter of six months, shows that in reality, the anti-choice movement is far more concerned about getting Republicans into office than ensuring “babies” are saved.