Washington conservative Christian leader Joe Fuiten, pastor of Cedar Park Assembly of God in Bothell, founder of Positive Christian Agenda, and a director of the Family Policy Institute of Washington, has sent the following letter to reassure pro-life voters that Dino Rossi is indeed on their side. Rossi has been the target of ads from the Washington Life Coalition, an organization allied with the Clint Didier campaign, (and which is not a registered PAC, hello PDC?) that claim the Republican Senate candidate is soft on abortion.
You can read Fuiten's letter below the jump:
I have been seeing a lot of commentary questioning, no stating, that Dino Rossi is not prolife. When I first saw it, I said, "What is this?" Looking a little closer, it seems to be coming mostly from the Clint Didier camp in order to create separation between the two candidates and to breathe life into the Didier campaign ... Ya gotta love politics!!!
I particularly was amazed with the charge that Dino supported pro-abortion legislation in Olympia when he was a Senator there. I called Bob Higley to make sure my recollections were correct. Bob Higley was the first President of Washington Evangelicals for Responsible Government (WERG) when it was formed with the help of Ellen Craswell and Skeeter Ellis.
WERG paid for a lobbyist in Olympia to represent Biblical causes. Bob led it for a number of years and then became the lobbyist when I became the President of WERG. We worked together on issues like abortion for almost 20 years. We were in on every battle relating to abortion over all that time. I asked him if Dino was always with us on the pro-life issues. Bob answered quickly that Dino Rossi was always to be counted on in the pro-life concerns.
This charge that Rossi voted to violate the conscience of medical providers and support abortion during his time in Olympia seems strange. I thought Dan Kennedy at Human Life of Washington did a good job in pointing out the actual facts in the case. (I have a high regard for Dan Kennedy who has been one of the most vigorous and outstanding pro-life forces in Washington State for a very long time). Here is some of what they said:
"This bill was specifically approved by the three Catholic bishops and their lobbyist, Sr. Sharon Park, indicating it did not promote abortion. It offered contraception options to women who were raped. Pro-life legislators were quite concerned and asked for the analysis. The WSCC signed off on the bill because they stated that conception would not occur in the time period provided in the bill. Assured by WSCC that the drugs in the legislation act as a contraceptive, not an abortifacient, and "hospitals" not ER workers are required to provide, they were further assured no separate "conscience protection" in the bill was necessary".
The charge that the bill which Rossi supported is "against Catholic, Christian, and pro-life values" is refuted by the support the Catholic Bishops gave to the bill. The language of the bill is clear enough that it is not about abortion. The law says it deals with "... health care treatment approved by the food and drug administration that prevents pregnancy, including but not limited to administering two increased doses of certain oral contraceptive pills within seventy-two hours of sexual contact." Maybe the point is too fine for some, but abortion, which terminates a pregnancy is not the same as "preventing pregnancy".
I am appreciative of the tremendous effort the Catholic Church has put into the pro-life issue. I appreciate people like Clint Didier and I think we need his activism in this state. I am not appreciative of the politically self-serving effort to misrepresent Rossi's record in Olympia.
> Rossi was with us in Olympia.
> I was there.
> Bob Higley was there.
> Dan Kennedy was there.
Maybe I shouldn't note, but I will, who wasn't there.
> I never saw these would-be politicians who criticize Dino there.
Dino has apparently not been willing to make abortion the centerpiece of his campaign. I do not understand pro-lifers who criticize the man saying he is not really pro-life. I thought Paul Aker made sense when he affirmed that what we really need to do is change hearts and minds. We have been making progress, slowly but surely, in the pro-life movement. Until we achieve greater success in the general population with our message there will not be a lot of legislative success. In the meantime, we have work to do but the work is not to treat solid conservative pro-lifers like Rossi as if they were Patty Murray.
I think successful armies fire at their opponents not their friends. Dino Rossi is a friend to us in the pro-life community. Help set the record straight. Forward to a friend!
Yours for the Kingdom,