This is the standard letter Senator Hutchison sends to usual inquiries about abortion.
Thank you for contacting me about my exploratory campaign for governor and the importance of safeguarding life. I appreciate the opportunity to share my views and my record with you.
The protection we provide to the most vulnerable among us is an important test of the integrity of our society. I believe strongly that we should do everything possible to reduce the incidence of abortions, in Texas and across the country. My commitment has prompted the National Right to Life Committee, the only national pro-life organization that methodically analyzes voting records, to give me a 94 percent lifetime Senate voting rating on vital pro-life issues.
You have asked about an important issue. I want to respond with a direct statement of my personal beliefs, and a factual recitation of my voting record in public office.
I strongly oppose all government funding for abortions. I have supported the Hyde amendment, which prohibits the use of taxpayer dollars for abortion, or for administrative costs of any health care benefits coverage that includes abortion. I have consistently supported the Mexico City policy denying U.S. aid for organizations that provide or promote abortion. In the Senate, I have voted to prohibit funding for abortion in U.S. military facilities, in District of Columbia funding, in federal employee insurance plans, in Native American facilities and in Medicaid and SCHIP authorization bills.
I also support all reasonable state restrictions on abortion. I have opposed legislation, such as the Freedom of Choice Act, that seeks to restrict state ability to enact reasonable limits on abortions. I support parental notification and waiting period laws, and I backed the successful effort to double penalties for crimes against a pregnant mother. I believe that subsequent U.S. Supreme Court decisions allowing these and similar state restrictions have reduced abortion on demand, and have enabled states to protect women and unborn babies following the Roe vs. Wade decision.
I fully recognize that any effective anti-abortion policy must include vigorous efforts to encourage adoption. I have promoted adoption education efforts for women contemplating an abortion, and have pushed to streamline the adoption process. I have co-sponsored legislation to provide tax incentives for adoptions, as well as increased support payments for adoption of children with special needs. Texas lags in adoption rates, and I believe we can do better.
With my Republican Senate colleagues, I have actively sought confirmation of strict constructionist judges who respect the rule of law, and do not legislate from the bench. To break a 2005 logjam over Circuit Court nominees, I led the fight along with Senator Cornyn to seat Texas’ Priscilla Owen, whose nomination had been stalled for over two years by pro-abortion groups. I provided strong support for Justices John Roberts and
Samuel Alito. If I am elected governor, I will continue to support and appoint judges who strictly interpret the law.
For years, I worked in the Senate to ban some of the worst forms of abortion. After several setbacks, including a veto by President Clinton and several adverse court rulings, a bill I co-sponsored that outlaws partial birth abortions was finally signed into law by President Bush in 2006. I have subsequently opposed amendments designed to weaken or nullify that partial birth abortion ban.
I have consistently supported medical research to save lives, but I have opposed human cloning and unfettered embryonic stem cell use. I back research utilization of non-embryonic stem cells first; that is where the most promising scientific advances have been made to date. I strongly oppose creating life to destroy life, and I endorsed and voted in 2006 for the Santorum legislation, signed into law by President Bush, that prohibits creation of human embryos specifically for research. I also believe that embryonic stem cells destined for destruction should be used, when appropriate, for life-saving research, and I supported President Bush’s policy permitting federal funding for embryonic stem cell lines already in existence. I have also consistently opposed “right to die” legislation that would protect doctors who participate in assisted suicide.
If I am fortunate enough to be elected Texas Governor, I will continue to pursue the same objectives protecting life. I will search for effective measures to reduce abortions, preserve the parental role when minors seek abortions, protect the right of conscience for health providers, promote counseling, oppose public funding for abortions, encourage adoption and make certain that judges who respect the law are appointed.
I appreciate hearing from you, and I hope you will visit www.texansforkay.com to get the latest updates from my campaign and to share your thoughts on what we can do to achieve the best for Texas.
Kay Bailey Hutchison