Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers, the Democratic candidate for governor, compared abortions to tonsillectomies and declared his support for taxpayer-funded abortions in a recent interview with the Weekly Standard.
In the interview, Evers was asked if there is room for pro-life Democrats in the Democratic Party. Evers said yes, but then spelled out his position on abortion.
“But we need to have the Medicaid money be available for all people and restricting it because of a certain procedure, whether it’s a tonsillectomy or any other procedure, seems to me a foolhardy thing to do,” Evers said. “So, yes, we have to respect people’s people’s pro-life beliefs, and certainly they’re welcome in the Democratic party.”
Evers’ comparison of abortion to a tonsillectomy was not well received by Wisconsin Right to Life (WRTL), the state’s largest pro-life organization.
“Comparing an abortion to a tonsillectomy is the most abhorrent comparison a candidate running for governor in Wisconsin could make,” said Heather Weininger, the executive director of WRTL. “One is taking a child’s life and another is ensuring a person has a healthy existence.”
Julaine Appling, executive director of Wisconsin Family Action agreed.
“That’s an outrageous and insulting comparison Tony Evers made,” Appling said. “It shows his disregard for human life if he can make any comparison between a procedure that takes out a tonsil and one that takes the life of an unborn child.”
Dan Miller, the state director of Pro-Life Wisconsin, called Evers’ remarks “an offense to human dignity.”
“And an abortion procedure is not the same as a tonsillectomy,” Miller said. “No one I know mourns the loss of their tonsils after this surgical procedure.”
Weininger was also unhappy with Evers’ position on using Medicaid to pay for abortions.
“Anyone who thinks our Medicaid dollars should be used to kill the unborn is unfit to lead the State of Wisconsin,” Weininger said.
Appling also questioned Evers’ fitness for becoming governor.
“I’m certainly glad that Tony Evers is not the governor and was not the governor while we’ve been passing legislation that keeps taxpayer money from funding elective abortions in our state,” Appling said. “Abortion is not health care. Taxpayers should never be required to pay for that procedure.”
Evers’ position of supporting taxpayer-funded abortions would seem to contradict his statement about respecting pro-life beliefs as it forces people who are opposed to abortion to financially subsidize a procedure they believe involves the killing of a child.
The question of whether there is room in the Democratic Party for pro-life supporters is especially relevant this year given efforts from NARAL and others to force out pro-life Democratic elected officials. Earlier this year, pro-abortion Democrats made a concerted (unsuccessful) effort to defeat Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-IL), one of three pro-life Democrats in the House of Representatives. Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez said every Democrat should support the right to an abortion, a position that “is not negotiable and should not change city by city or state by state.”
Miller disputed Evers’ statement that there is room for pro-life Democrats in the party, saying Evers should check his party’s platform.
“The Democrat Party is one of the most ardent supporters of abortion in the nation,” Miller said. “For him to claim that there is room for pro-life Democrats under the ‘big-tent’ of the Democrat party defies reality. Party leaders consistently primary pro-life Democrat candidates in race after race.”