Driehaus Files Complaint to Stop Ad on Abortion-Funding
3:59 PM, Oct 7, 2010 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
Democratic representative Steve Driehaus has filed a complaint with the Ohio Elections Commission against the pro-life Susan B. Anthony List to stop the group from putting up four billboards claiming that Driehaus voted for taxpayer-funding of abortion (see the ad here).
“The information is factually untrue and this is just another attempt by Steve Chabot’s supporters to spread false information,” Driehaus said Thursday, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer. “The Susan B. Anthony List is doing everything they can to attack pro-life Democrats, not because of what we achieved in the health care bill but because they’re partisan.”
"Meanwhile, it looks like the billboards will not be put up until the matter is settled," the Enquirer reports. "The Ohio Elections Commission has set a hearing on the complaint for Thursday, Oct. 14 in Columbus."
Driehaus was a member of Bart Stupak's coalition of self-proclaimed pro-life Democrats who said they would not vote for the health care bill last March because it allowed taxpayer-funding of abortion. Stupak and others ended up voting for the bill in the end, claiming that the president's executive order would block taxpayer-funding of abortion.
Some critics have pointed out that the executive order could be revoked by a future president or overturned by a judge in court, since an executive order cannot countermand law. But the real problem with the executive order is that it didn't even purport to countermand the main abortion-funding mechanism in Obamacare. The order reaffirms the language on abortion in the Senate bill to which the Stupak Democrats objected.
As Democratic congressman Dan Lipinski, the lone member of Stupak's group to vote against Obamacare in March, said in July: "the executive order probably would not stand [in court] and even if it did stand, it only covered part of the abortion funding—the direct funding of abortion [at Community Health Centers], not the fees for [subsidized] health plans.” Perhaps Lipinski should be called as a witness at the October 14 Ohio Elections Commission hearing.
The SBA List's president Marjorie Dannenfeslser makes the same point Lipinski did in a statement today:
More background on this point from an interview with Bart Stupak: