Mixed signals from N.H. GOP platform committee

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Revisions to the New Hampshire Republican Party platform proposed by the platform committee send a set of contradictory messages.

They propose removing a reference to “traditional families” as the “foundation of strong communities” — but continue to declare marriage is a “legal union between one man and one woman.”

They propose removing language opposing “Sharia Law, the International Baccalaureate Program, UN Agenda 21 or other ‘sustainable development’ programs” — but they oppose the implementation of Obamacare.

They propose removing a reference supporting “organizations who provide alternatives to abortions” — but leave intact a commitment to “implement all possible legal protections” for "the unborn child’s fundamental right to life."

There is dissent. One delegate proposed eliminating the anti-choice language. “This sentence sounds very threatening,” she wrote. “To implement all possible legal protections. I’m concerned that women seeking an abortion, which is their moral choice, good or bad, will be criminalized. The sentence could sound like the war on women the democrats talk about.” The committee rejected her recommendation.

When the Republican State Committee holds its 2014 Convention on Saturday, delegates will be called upon to ratify the platform revisions. The delegates were chosen by Republican voters in last week’s primary election. Tea Party and Free Stater activists had worked to increase their representation at the convention. Saturday, we’ll learn if they were any more successful than their candidates for Governor and the U.S. Senate.


Lady Parts Justice (‘kicking politicians out of women’s vaginas since 2012’) takes on Scott Brown

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They’re bold, they’re profane, they’re funny. They’re Lady Parts Justice, a group that describes themselves as “the first not safe for work, rapid response reproductive rights messaging hub that uses comedy, culture and digital media to get people off their asses and reclaim their rights.”

Led by Lizz Winstead, co-creator of The Daily Show, LPJ is using comedy to reshape the narrative on reproductive rights — and to serve as a catalyst for activism. “Women need to put their foot down, their uterus down, and take to the street,” Winstead told Elle.

Yesterday, the group launched an interactive web site highlighting threats to reproductive rights in each of the 50 states. The “five terrible things” about New Hampshire include state House Rep. Jeanine Notter’s claim that birth control causes prostate cancer and Rep. Peter Hansen referring to women as “vagina’s” [sic].

And then there’s the video (NSFW):


Havenstein takes a stand: All of the above

This morning, during a radio interview with Jack Heath on WGIR 610, Republican gubernatorial candidate Walt Havenstein refused to state his positions on marriage equality and a woman’s right to choose:

Heath: Let me ask you for clarity on this show. Are you pro-life or pro-choice?

Havenstein: No. Jack, I have very strong personal views on that issue, as other people do. I’m not going to make that part of my campaign or governing, frankly. I suspect it will come up not just here but in other places in the future, but I’m going to be focused on pro-growth, as opposed to the social issues.

Heath: But you know at a forum or debate, someone is going to say, “Mr. Havenstein, you’re running for governor. Are you pro-life, pro-choice? Do you support gay marriage?” Those are questions that you’re going to be asked. So would you just share a position on either?

Havenstein: No, I’m not going to share a position on either today.

Then, on his way over to WMUR for an interview with Josh McElveen, Havenstein apparently realized that his stonewall strategy was not going to fly. The former defense contractor addressed both issues with McElveen — by taking both sides:


h/t: NHDP


NH02: Anti-abortion PAC endorses Marilinda Garcia

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Susan B. Anthony List Candidate Fund, an anti-abortion political action committee, has endorsed state House Rep. Marilinda Garcia in her Republican primary contest with former state Sen. Gary Lambert to take on Congresswoman Ann Kuster.

“State Representative Garcia is a rising star in politics and we are proud to endorse her campaign,” said President Marjorie Dannenfelser. “Marilinda has proven track record of defending life in New Hampshire and is an original member of the SBA List’s National Pro-Life Woman’s Caucus.”

Garcia’s anti-abortion views are not in question. On her previous campaign web site, she wrote that she believes the U.S. Constitution prohibits abortion. Garcia described her position as “[b]elieving that the unborn child has a fundamental right to life and clarifying the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections as applicable to unborn children.”

SBA List did not explain why they endorsed Garcia over Lambert. Both candidates have nearly identical anti-choice voting records and are on the record supporting fetal homicide legislation, prohibiting the use of public funds for abortion services, requiring 24-hour notice for abortions, prohibiting abortions after 20 weeks and banning so-called partial-birth abortions.


Rep. Lambert: Constitutional right to own your body and make your own decisions excludes women

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The state lawmaker who spoke out against suicide prevention education saying “people should own their bodies” and even children have a constitutional right “to make their own decisions” has consistently voted against a woman’s right to reproductive freedom.

Libertarian state Rep. George Lambert was jeered on the House floor Wednesday when he opposed House Bill 1588, which would have required schools to provide suicide prevention education.

If this is enacted and a young person is actually contemplating suicide, what happens to them if we actually implement all of these programs?” he asked. “Are they denied their ability to actually evaluate whether or not that’s an option for them?”

In an interview with the Portsmouth Herald, the Litchfield Republican defended his comments. “The idea that people should own their own bodies is not insensitive, it’s an insightful comment,” he insisted. “What I said is that we actually have constitutional protections for people to make their own decisions.”

Lambert’s concern for young people owning their bodies excludes pregnant teenagers. In 2011, he voted to require a parent be notified before a minor has an abortion — even if the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest.

Lambert’s concern for a constitutional protection for people to make their own decisions excludes a woman’s decision to have an abortion — a constitutionally protected procedure. In 2012, Lambert voted to impose a 24-hour waiting period before all abortions and require doctors to provide false and misleading information to women having the procedure.

Lambert’s concern for people owning their bodies did not prevent him from voting to override a veto by Gov. Lynch and support an anti-choice bill described as “so vague and expansive that it could have given full rights of personhood even to embryos created during in-vitro fertilization.”

h/t: Granite State Progress State House Report Card


NH House: Trust women. No abortion waiting period.

The New Hampshire House today defeated a bill that would have imposed a 24-hour waiting period and mandatory counseling for abortion care.

House Bill 483 was rejected in a 229 to 121 vote. 37 Republicans joined Democrats in killing the proposed legislation. Four Democrats crossed the aisle and supported it.

“Today the House sent a powerful message to anti-choice extremists — government interference in private medical decisions is not the New Hampshire way,” declared Sara Persechino, NARAL Pro-Choice New Hampshire.

"This vote marks a commitment from the legislature to continue New Hampshire’s long and proud tradition of trusting women—in consultation with their families, their faith, and their medical providers—to make informed health-care decisions without government interference.”


N.H. House to vote on abortion restrictions

Tomorrow, the New Hampshire House votes on a bill that would impose a 24-hour waiting period and mandatory counseling for abortion care.

The House Judiciary Committee has voted 13-6 against House Bill 483. Writing for the majority, Rep. Sylvia Gale (D-Nashua) warns the legislation “would impose ideologically driven obstacles … and is both impractical and burdensome…”

This bill suggests that women do not think carefully about abortion and are unable to make responsible decision without government interference….

Safe and legal abortion appears to be the only medical procedure in which legislative interference is proposed. Such attempts to impose legislative imperatives between a patient and her professional medical provider are unnecessary and should not be acceptable to this body.

Sara Persechino, NARAL Pro-Choice New Hampshire, notes the legislature has considered similar measures seven times during the past 15 years. “Each and every time,” she says, lawmakers “soundly rejected attempts to place roadblocks between women and safe, legal abortion:”

The majority of Granite Staters agree—there’s no room for politicians in personal, private medical decisions. That’s not the New Hampshire way. We are confident that this legislative body will follow our state’s long and proud tradition of trusting women, in consultation with their families and medical providers, to make informed health-care decisions without government interference.

Tomorrow at 8:30 a.m., opponents of HB 483 will gather outside the State House in Concord for a “Rally to Keep Politicians Out of Health-Care Decisions!

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House committee vote: No abortion waiting period

The New Hampshire House Judiciary Committee today voted to recommend killing a bill that would have required a 24-hour waiting period before a woman could receive an abortion.

House Bill 483, sponsored by Reps. Jane Cormier (R-Alton) and Lenette Peterson (R-Merrimack), is similar to a bill passed by last year’s Republican-led House before being killed by the Senate.

NARAL Pro-Choice New Hampshire was on hand to report on today’s committee action:


Rep. Notter: Shame on me for hating cancer

Commenting on Facebook, state House Rep. Jeanine Notter (R-Merrimack) sarcastically defends her discredited theory that abortion is associated with an increased risk of breast cancer:

The ABC (abortion/breast cancer) connection was part of the Women’s Right to Know bill that I sponsored. Shame on me for hating cancer so much I wanted to help women learn one of the causes. Can you believe I even went so far as to bring in a Breast Surgeon specialists to explain it all to us? What was I thinking? That is my shame to carry.


Quote of the day: A simple but vital principle

Today, as we mark the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, we reflect on a historic decision that enshrined a simple but vital principle: that all women are entitled to make decisions about their own health and bodies without government intrusion. As a mother, daughter, adoption attorney, and longtime advocate for women’s health and rights, I will always stand up for that principle, and for my firm belief that we need less government interference in our personal lives.

— Congresswoman Ann Kuster, on 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade


2012 exit poll data: NH solidly pro-choice

72% of Granite State voters in this year’s presidential election said abortion should be legal in most or all cases. President Obama was the overwhelming choice of those voters, beating Mitt Romney by a 64% to 34% margin among those supporting legal abortions.

25% of New Hampshire voters said abortions should be illegal in most or all cases. Romney won 84% of the votes from that group compared to just 15% who supported Obama.

New Hampshire had the highest level of support for legal abortions among the 14 states surveyed on the question in national exit polling. New York and New Jersey were next with 71% support. Voters in Missouri and North Carolina expressed the least support for legal abortions with slight majorities, 53%, saying abortion should be legal in most or all cases.

Which comes closest to your position? Abortion should be: TotalObamaRomney 
Legal in all cases40%76%22% 
Legal in most cases32%50%49% 
Illegal in most cases18%17%82% 
Illegal in all cases7%-- 

Sample: 1007 respondents


SBA List targets NH with graphic anti-abortion calls

Susan B. Anthony List, the hardline anti-abortion advocacy group, is blanketing New Hampshire residents with a graphic phone message attacking President Obama for his pro-choice policies.

I’m Jill Stanek, a Chicago nurse. I was outraged when I discovered that babies who were born alive because of botched abortions were being left to die. I worked to protect these babies with the Infant Born Alive Act in the Illinois legislature, but state Sen. Barack Obama fought against the bill and voted against it four times. Barack Obama is the most extreme pro-abortion president we’ve ever had. That’s why this Chicagoan is voting for life and against Barack Obama. I hope you will too. This message was paid for by the Susan B. Anthony List. Not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committees. sba-list.org.


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