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items tagged with abortion

Dems Put Rauner in a Bind on Abortion Issue
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Illinois Politics

2014-11-02 11:20:07

I’m going to talk about one of the weirdest things that happened this campaign season.

Earlier this year, ultra-conservative activist Jack Roeser told me that his friend Bruce Rauner believed life began at conception. “I’d describe him as a guy who is a morally right-to-life guy, but not on the hustings,” said Roeser, who has since passed away, about GOP gubernatorial nominee Rauner.

Roeser and many of his right-to-life allies backed Rauner every step of the way, while Rauner, who belatedly admitted that he’s pro-choice, spent much of the Republican primary campaign fighting for term limits and pledging battles with the Springfield Democrats and their teacher-union allies.

The candidate has often said that he has “no social agenda” and would focus solely on cleaning up government and getting the economy running again. But in addition to those factors, he also wanted to avoid stressing the issue for fear of alienating a relatively small but still important base of Republican voters who just won’t vote for a pro-choicer of any party. Every vote counts, especially if you’re a Republican running in Democratic Illinois.

But the issue exploded during the campaign’s final week. Local 150 of the Operating Engineers Union – one of Governor Pat Quinn’s strongest supporters – spent big bucks supporting the unabashedly pro-life, pro-gun Libertarian Party candidate for governor, Chad Grimm. The idea was to siphon votes away from Rauner.


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