Anti-Choice Republican Thom Tillis Wins North Carolina Senate Primary


North Carolina Republican Thom Tillis, a staunchly anti-choice politician who says he would support a “personhood” amendment to the U.S. Constitution and believes states should have the right to ban contraceptives, won the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate on Tuesday night.

Since Tillis won with more than 40 percent of the vote, he avoids a runoff and goes on to face pro-choice Democrat Kay Hagan in the general election. That race will be one of several to determine whether Democrats maintain control of the Senate, and observers predict that it could be a referendum on women’s health issues similar to last year’s gubernatorial race in Virginia, when Terry McAuliffe defeated the vocally anti-choice Ken Cuccinelli.

Planned Parenthood advocates vow to educate and motivate women voters in North Carolina using a data-driven strategy similar to what they used in Virginia. Planned Parenthood Action Fund launched a massive $18 million Women Are Watching campaign earlier this year designed to support reproductive “champs” like Hagan against “chumps” like Tillis.

“The difference between Senator Kay Hagan and Thom Tillis couldn’t be starker when it comes to issues important to women, such as access to birth control and safe and legal abortion,” said Melissa Reed, vice president for public affairs at Planned Parenthood Health Systems Action Fund, in a statement. “We can count on Senator Hagan to stand up for North Carolina women and families in Washington, but the only thing we can count on Thom Tillis to do is attack women’s access to health care every chance he gets.”

Many reports characterize Tillis as the “GOP establishment” candidate, but as Joan Walsh notes at Salon, there is actually little daylight between him and his Tea Party challengers when it comes to ideology:

Far from having lost, the Tea Party has gotten most of what it wanted in Tillis. The House speaker is a leader of the movement to repeal most of the 20th century in North Carolina. He’s a tax-slashing, voter-ID backing, anti-choice extremist who opposes a federal minimum wage. Just to make clear Tillis is no threat to Tea Party ideology, Rand Paul endorsed him before the final votes were counted Tuesday night.

Don’t be fooled by claims that he is a ‘moderate.’ Thom Tillis is an extreme opponent of women’s health,” said Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Action Fund, in a statement.

Tillis faced a crowded field of challengers, most of whom were equally anti-choice and some only slightly more so (opposing abortion in all circumstances except to save the woman’s life, while Tillis also supports exceptions for rape and incest).

Tillis’ record as speaker of the house in North Carolina has been one of aggressively attempting to limit access to reproductive health care. He championed an unpopular package of abortion restrictions that was inserted into an unrelated motorcycle safety bill, voted multiple times to defund Planned Parenthood, and led the charge to pass an extreme forced ultrasound bill that was ultimately vetoed.

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  • blfdjlj

    Brilliant guy. He looks so reasonable compared to his opponents.

    • fiona64

      You have a highly unusual definition of “reasonable,” I think.

      • blfdjlj

        I was sarcastically referring to his opponents, one of whom who was endorsed by multiple hate groups and the other who believed that Planned Parenthood has a plan to murder newborns.

        • paula

          Oh, okay, sorry I gave you a thumbs down. I would give you two thumbs up to make up for it if I could.

        • fiona64

          Sorry … we get some serious anti-choice nutjobs in here from time to time, and it’s hard to tell when folks are being sarcastic as a result.

          • blfdjlj

            I know. There was one who argued that Planned Parenthood carries out the same work as the Nazis.

          • CJ99

            Yeah I think we’ve all seen more than a few. I remember one on another site who really bites the biscuit. She would invariably link any kind of anti choice rant being right to her being an “annunaki alien who created humanity”. Not making that 1 up either, if I was I’d come up with a better story.

          • BH

            P-L-E-A-S-E! it’s pro-life and anti-life. Why are you liberals so willing to kill a baby?

          • fiona64

            If you know of anyone who has killed a baby, please get off the internet and contact the police at once.

            Your histrionics are, of course, duly noted.

          • BH

            Since it is a fact, backed up by a consensus of physicians and scientists, that life begins at conception, anyone who performs an abortion is killing a baby!

          • fiona64

            ROFLMAO. Since no one can reliably establish when conception occurs (pregnancy is only detectable after implantation), I’m sorry to say that you are full of crap. There is no “consensus” on the matter. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/237954.php

            Quote:
            “Obstetrician-gynecologists’ beliefs about when pregnancy begins appear to be shaped significantly by whether they object to abortion and by the importance of religion in their lives.”

            And, just so you know … all infants (babies) everywhere? Have been born. Zygotes and embryos (the stage at which most abortions occur) are not “babies.” Really, you are stamping your feet and screaming nonsense.

            So, in other words, despite your protestations, your post contains no facts whatsoever … just your absurd opinion.

          • Arekushieru

            My mom is Pro-CHOICE because she CHOSE to have me and my sibling. How the FUCK is that anti-life? YOU are anti-life because your ilk actually kills WOMEN.

          • BH

            I’ve heard it said that “profanity is the ATTEMPT of a feeble mind to express itself forcefully”. Thanks for confirming that.

  • Suba gunawardana

    I keep hearing the phrase “anti-choice republican”, and am interested to know if there are any pro-choice republicans.

    There certainly are many anti-choice “democrats” here in the South.

    • Arekushieru

      Yeah, there is a website devoted to Pro-Choice Republicans, I believe. I’ll see if I can find it and post it in a simple text format.

    • BH

      You anti-life liberals are very misinformed. Pro-life are very pro-choice. You see a woman and a man have plenty of opportunities for making a choice. First, they can decide to not have sex except in marriage. Second, to make the first easier, choose not to get into situations that make following the first choice harder. Third, they can hang around with people who believe the same as they do.

      • Suba gunawardana

        “Pro-choice” means each person gets to make their OWN choice. Everything you just stated? YOU dictating to others what their choice should be. Ergo, ANTI-choice.

        To elaborate: “First, they can decide to not have sex except in marriage.”
        Do you equally approve of their choice to have sex anytime? If not, you are anti-choice.

        “Second, to make the first easier, choose not to get into situations that make following the first choice harder.”
        Do you equally approve of their choice to get into these situations? (BTW what situations?) If not, you are anti-choice.

        “Third, they can hang around with people who believe the same as they do.”
        Do you equally approve of their choice to hang around with anyone? If not you are anti-choice.

        Also, marriage is NOT a magic potion that makes it any easier to have unwanted children. If you are unable/unwilling to be a parent, marriage cannot magically make you a fit parent.

        • BH

          Your idea of pro-choice only includes the choice you approve. And what about the choice of the baby? Since the consensus of scientists and physicians is that life begins at conception, why does their choice not matter?

          • fiona64

            Still spouting off about that non-existent “consensus,” I see …

            And yes, you are all about “everyone should do what I say.” Guess what? The only person you get to decide for is yourself.

          • Suba gunawardana

            Wrong. I completely disapprove of excessive breeding, but I do NOT advocate taking that choice away from anyone. Choice to breed or abort belongs ONLY to the pregnant woman, not you or me. You on the other hand, wish to TAKE AWAY he choice to abort.

            The zygote/embryo/fetus is not in a position to choose, considering it doesn’t have a mind developed enough to make any kind of decision, and it inhabits the body of another person who HAS the right to choose.

            Now hypothetically if a ZEF could choose, more than likely it would NOT choose to inhabit the body of a woman who doesn’t want it, and it wouldn’t wish to be born to a mother unable/unwilling to care for them as a child.

          • Arekushieru

            Nope. It includes ANY choice that each individual woman makes for HERSELF. Since the consensus is that rapists are people, why does THEIR choice not matter? Uh, because they’re the ones INFRINGING on the other person’s choice, asshat? A fetus is not a baby.

  • CJ99

    I’ve seen many such dolts wanting personhood legislation whilst also desiring bans on contraceptives. We should uses their desires against them, that being if all of our sperm & ova become defined as persons we’d have enough votes to permanently remove these fanatics from office.