Questions for Martha McSally: What exactly is your position on abortion rights and ‘Personhood’ legislation?


chickenbunkerThe Arizona Republic was patting itself on the back this weekend for How The Republic gets candidates to talk about issues. Well maybe, but with the glaring exception of the one candidate who will not take a position on any issue, Tea-Publican Martha McSally in CD 2, who is still hiding in her chicken bunker.

Case in point, The Republic asked the congressional candidates their stance on Rep. Trent Franks’ (R-AZ) bill to impose a 20-week gestation period for access to abortion. This is the federal version of the anti-choice forced-birth model legislation enacted by several state legislatures including Arizona, which has been stayed by every court to have considered the model legislation, pending a final order striking down the law as unconstitutional. (It is in direct conflict with the 24-week gestation period in Roe v. Wade).

uterus-stateEvery Tea-Publican running for Congress in Arizona answered they would support Franks’ bill to restrict a woman’s constitutional right to an abortion and her right to privacy in medical consultation with her physician, making her uterus the “property of the state” and subject to the dictates of Big Brother the state — Arizona candidates’ stands on abortion limits — with the exception of Martha McSally: “Republican Martha McSally did not respond.”

Martha McSally has previously gone on the record about abortion during the 2012 campaign. The Tucson Weekly reported Akin and Abortion: Southern AZ Congressional Candidates:

In the Congressional District 2 race, Republican Martha McSally also told the Center for Arizona Policy that she opposed abortion in cases of rape and incest.

In a February interview with the Weekly, McSally [first responded “I believe in the sanctity of all human life” but] declined to state her position on legal abortion in cases of rape or incest, saying that “legislators are not really involved in this issue right now. We have a Supreme Court decision, and so I’ll be focusing on things that the House of Representatives needs to be doing.”

[Hence The Republic’s question about Rep. Trent Franks’ 20-week abortion bill approved by the Tea-Publican House earlier this year. No dodging this question this year, lady.]

But last week, McSally spokesman Bruce Harvie told TW that McSally opposes abortion rights but “supports exemptions for rape, incest and the life of mothers.”

Harvie said that McSally considered Akin’s comments to be “absolutely reprehensible.”

The Tucson Weekly reported a few days later in Choice Politics, “Harvie said that McSally would also be clarifying her stance with the Center for Arizona Policy.”

In March of 2012, McSally responded to a question about Roe v. Wade at the Pima County Young Republican Club debate as follows:

MCSALLY: I believe that life begins at conception and we need to make sure that we, we – the sanctity of life is preserved. This is our responsibility at the federal, the state, and the community level. Culturally, we have just gone in such the wrong direction on this issue and we need to turn that around. So, I am pro-life. I believe in the sanctity of life and we need to protect that and preserve that […] So, I am pro-life, I believe in the sanctity of life. We need to preserve that and we also need to address the community that they’re born into. [Pima County Young Republican Club Debate, Part 4, 9:44, 3/26/12]

 If McSally believes that “life begins at conception,” then what is her position on “Personhood” legislation which has become an issue in Senate races around the country this year? Let’s see whether The Arizona Republic can get McSally and other GOP congressional candidates in Arizona to talk about this issue. The sleeper issue of 2014: ‘Personhood.

A year ago last June, The Tucson Weekly reported, AZ Democratic Party Tied McSally to Rep. Franks’ Comments on Rape and Abortion:

The Arizona Democratic Party sent out a bulletin yesterday linking Republican Martha McSally . . .  to Congressman Trent Franks, whose comments about rape and pregnancy made national news this week.

[Arizona Congressman Trent Franks, who is pushing legislation to ban abortions after 20 weeks across the country, downplayed concerns about pregnancies resulting from rape today.

The Washington Post reports:

Another Republican congressman ventured into the realm of rape and pregnancy Wednesday, saying at a committee hearing that incidences of pregnancy from rape are “very low.”Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.), whose measure banning abortions after 20 weeks was being considered in the House Judiciary Committee, argued against a Democratic amendment to make exceptions for rape and incest by suggesting that pregnancy from rape is rare.

“Before, when my friends on the left side of the aisle here tried to make rape and incest the subject — because, you know, the incidence of rape resulting in pregnancy are very low,” Franks said.

Franks continued: “But when you make that exception, there’s usually a requirement to report the rape within 48 hours. And in this case that’s impossible because this is in the sixth month of gestation. And that’s what completely negates and vitiates the purpose for such an amendment.”]

McSally’s 2012 “clarification” that she would support exemptions for rape, incest and the life of the mother puts her in direct conflict with Rep. Trent Franks, who does not believe in any exemptions for any reason. Franks was an ardent supporter of McSally in 2012.

Here’s the Democrats’ press release:

Congressional candidate Martha McSally should be more careful about the company she keeps. Congressman Trent Franks was among McSally’s earliest and most ardent admirers in her failed District 2 Congressional race last year.The same Trent Franks who McSally described as a “great conservative leader” is also the latest example of the GOP’s Neanderthal approach to women’s issues. Franks enraged rational people everywhere by telling the House Judiciary Committee, “The incidence of rape resulting in pregnancy is very low.”

Does McSally still think that Franks is, “an example to every member of Congress of how to lead with integrity and humility while fighting for the values that we as Americans hold dear”? If she thinks that Franks is a great leader who is fighting for the values we hold dear, what does that say about Martha McSally’s judgment? Does her support of Trent Franks mean Martha McSally doesn’t believe in the Constitution which protects a woman’s right to choose?

“Whatever her answer, it is clear Martha McSally is out of touch and out of step with mainstream Arizonans,” said DJ Quinlan, executive director of the Arizona Democratic Party. “The people of District 2 are fortunate that Ron Barber, a man who truly reflects their values, is their congressman.”

The Range reached out to McSally yesterday, but we haven’t heard back from her yet. We’ll let you know if she responds.

 A Few days later The Tucson Weekly reprised this report in The Skinny and reported “The Skinny reached out to McSally to see if she had a response to the Democratic Party’s release, but we didn’t hear back from her.”

This is a  recurring situation with Martha McSally both in 2012, and again this year.

Voters in Congressional District 2 have the right to know your positions on the issues of the day, Ms. McSally. Feel free to answer the questions by posting a response to our “Questions for Martha McSally” series of posts. You can only hide in your chicken bunker for so long before the truth wins out.

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AZ BlueMeanie
The Blue Meanie is an Arizona citizen who wishes, for professional reasons, to remain anonymous when blogging about politics. Armed with a deep knowledge of the law, politics and public policy, as well as pen filled with all the colors stolen from Pepperland, the Blue Meanie’s mission is to pursue and prosecute the hypocrites, liars, and fools of politics and the media – which, in practical terms, is nearly all of them. Don’t even try to unmask him or he’ll seal you in a music-proof bubble and rendition you to Pepperland for a good face-stomping. Read blog posts by the infamous and prolific AZ Blue Meanie here.