Politics & Policy

How Pro-Life is Chris Carney?

Tom Marino may be his own worst enemy.

The challenger to incumbent Democrat Rep. Chris Carney for PA-10 is finding himself in uncomfortable territory after a political stunt gone wrong:

Congressman Chris Carney (D-10) called foul play on Republican challenger Tom Marino Monday, saying the former U.S. Attorney has been using dirty politics to misrepresent the incumbent’s stance on abortion.

Carney’s comments, during a conference call with reporters and a statement later, came after Marino criticized Carney — at times using a debunked claim — for not cosponsoring legislation that would reaffirm the policy of not allowing taxpayer funding for abortions. Carney said he had left Washington as the bill was circulated to be with his wife, who underwent surgery for breast cancer. The congressman himself was then silent last week after reporting for active duty as a Navy Reservist.

He angrily broke that silence Monday.

“My priority in the time leading up to Jen’s surgery on July 30 was my family,” Carney said. “The way that Tom Marino has carried out this latest attack, repeatedly attacking on this issue when he knew the circumstances, demonstrates he is bereft of basic human decency. It is gutter politics of the worst kind and it has absolutely no place in our community.”

Carney’s spokesman said he would cosponsor the legislation in question this week. Carney has repeatedly identified himself as being pro-life.

Marino’s awkward timing and novice damage control aside, there are problems with the notion that Chris Carney has been consistently pro-life.

From VoteSmart.org:

– Carney supported the interests of NARAL Pro-Choice America 50% in 2009.

– Carney supported the interests of Planned Parenthood 100% in 2008.

– Carney supported the interest of the National Right to Life Committee 14% in 2007-2008.

– Carney supported the interests of the NARAL Pro-Choice America 100% in 2007.

In voting for President Obama’s universal health care program, Carney stood in opposition to his own Diocese of Scranton.


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