Idaho Chooses Life (ICL), a pro-life group, has thrown its support to state Rep. Raul Labrador in the Republican primary election for Idaho's 1st Congressional District. Labrador is facing Vaughn Ward, a Marine reservist, for the right to face Democrat incumbent Walt Minnick in the general election in November. The primary will be held on May 25.
ICL chose Labrador because of his work on the Idaho Health Freedom Act, a bill passed into law during the 2010 legislative session, which gave Idaho the right to sue the federal government over recent federal health care reforms. ICL director David Ripley as praised Labrador for his vote on health workers' conscience legislation, which give some medical workers the ability to object to performing certain procedures or dispensing some medications.
Ripley issued this statement to IdahoReporter.com:
“We’ve had the honor of working with Raul for a number of years now, and appreciate his integrity and commitment to pro-Life principles,” said ICL Executive Director David Ripley. “What separates the candidates running for Congress is Labrador’s proven value under fire.”
Labrador has served in the Idaho State House of Representatives since being elected in 2006. During that time he has earned a 100% pro-Life voting record.
This past session, Labrador was co-sponsor of two key pieces of pro-Life legislation.
“Labrador provided leadership in answering the threat of ObamaCare,” Ripley said, “which is the most dangerous advance of abortion since the Roe v. Wade decision.”
Labrador was one of the House leaders who brought forth the Idaho Health Freedom Act, which is the basis for Idaho’s court challenge to federalized health care.
Then he assisted Idaho Chooses Life in getting a strong conscience protection bill enacted into law.
“Conscience protection for doctors and nurses is part of a larger strategy to resist death panels and the rationing of health care for seniors and vulnerable Idahoans,” Ripley added.
The Board of Idaho Chooses Life reviewed candidate answers to an extensive survey on pro-Life issues. Labrador, Vaughn Ward and Harley Brown all scored well on the questionnaire. The other candidates did not respond.
“We acknowledge the candidates’ positions on critical pro-Life issues,” Ripley said. “But we’ve learned through hard experience that there is just no substitute for being there. Raul has stood his ground time after time, when politics and the Abortion Lobby have exerted tremendous pressure to abandon principle.”
“Our endorsement is meant to honor Raul Labrador’s record and service to Idaho,” Ripley concluded.
The Labrador campaign has not commented on the endorsement. Ward’s spokesman, Ryan O’Barto responded to ICL’s move, saying “Vaughn believes that life begins at conception and that we must protect the rights of the unborn. In Congress, Vaughn will remain strongly committed to the fight against abortion.”