In the name of radical pro-choice activism, EMILY’s List has come to fund a motley crew of extreme leftist candidates. Since the List bases its funding strictly upon a candidate’s views on abortion (and her sex), they refuse to consider the candidate’s other extreme leftist actions. Their radical stance on abortion and narrow funding criteria have put them in league with the Democratic Party’s far-Left.
EMILY’s List is a political network that raises money early in the election cycle for Democratic, pro-choice women. The organizers of the list believe that providing money to such candidates early in the process gives a female candidate more credibility and, therefore, access to more campaign contributions. “EMILY” is not a person, but an acronym standing for “Early Money Is Like Yeast (it makes the dough rise).”
The List was founded in 1985 by a group of women who were willing to bundle their political contributions in order to support “progressive” (read leftist) women candidates. These initial women, in turn, solicited more funds from their friends for their preferred candidates. In 1994, the List began work as a “full-service” campaign organization, offering political consulting and operating “get-out-the-vote” drives targeting women. In the 2002 election cycle, the List claims it raised $24 million for its own expenses and campaigns, as well as $9.7 million in bundled candidate contributions from a claimed 73,000-plus membership.
The candidates that EMILY’s List funds definitely meet the requirement of “progressive.” Some of them, in fact, are so “progressive” that they almost run off the edge of the political spectrum, at least for national candidates.
One of the most well known recipients of EMILY’s List assistance was former Representative Cynthia McKinney, D-GA. Congresswoman McKinney’s real claim to fame was that she had the gall to accuse President Bush of being responsible for the September 11 attacks on the United States, and of having personally profited by them. When her irresponsible remarks were reported in the Washington Post, she “apologized,” saying, “I am not aware of any evidence showing that President Bush . . . personally profited from the attacks . . . (but) a complete investigation might reveal that to be the case.”
McKinney also actively courted financial contributions from Arab sources. After September 11, a Saudi Prince, Alwaleed bin Talal, offered New York City Mayor Rudi Giuliani $10 million to assist the victims of the attack. In presenting Giuliani with the check, bin Talal made sure to place the blame for the attacks on U.S. support of Israel. Giuliani, who is nobody’s fool, returned the money. McKinney, seeing green, seized the moment. She wrote the Prince, asking for the check to assist the poor of America and offering to “provide a list of charities” that could put the money to good use.
The voters in McKinney’s Georgia district didn’t seem to care for Ms. McKinney’s comments. They turned her out of office despite EMILY’s support. After her electoral defeat in the 2002 Georgia primary, her campaign manager – her father, former state representative Bill McKinney – publicly put the blame on “Jews. J-E-W-S.” McKinney’s name is currently be bandied about as a possible presidential candidate on the Green party ticket.
Another example is Representative Maxine Waters, D-CA, who publicly blames the epidemic of crack cocaine use among African-Americans on . . . the U.S. government. Although no evidence to the effect has been turned up, Waters steadfastly claims the CIA sold the deadly drug to black communities in a deliberate campaign of decimation. Regardless of the sensational and baseless nature of these charges, Waters has never backed down from them, even in light of the 9/11 attacks.
She has publicly supported racist violence. Waters called the 1992 Los Angeles riots a “revolution” – defending the anti-white and anti-Asian violence. She then paid a personal visit to the home of the rioter who threw a chunk of concrete through the windshield of Reginald Denny and gleefully danced over his injured body.
Waters also demonstrated her hypocrisy on an issue dear to the heart of pro-choice women: civility towards women. She defended Snoop Dogg’s inviolable “freedom of speech” to refer to women as “bitches” and “hos” in his particular “art” form. Yet when the head of the Los Angeles Police Commission allegedly referred to Waters herself as a “bitch,” Waters promptly demanded he resign.
One of the best examples of the candidates supported by the List is former Senator Carol Moseley-Braun (D-IL), now a candidate for the Democratic nomination for President. Moseley-Braun also had a number of financial problems involving her campaign apparatus while a Senator. The Federal Election Commission conducted a three-year investigation into her campaign finances. FEC sources say the senator only escaped prosecution because of an expired statute of limitations and the lack of available investigators. The FEC was clear that, in spite of the spin of Moseley-Braun’s campaign, there was “no exoneration” involved in its decision to drop the matter. The Clinton Justice Department then refused the Internal Revenue Service’s request to investigate allegations of criminal misappropriation of campaign funds. Moseley-Braun also has a bad habit of operating under suspicious circumstances. Right after she was elected to her one term in the Senate, she took a questionable vacation to Nigeria with her fiance’ and campaign manager, Kgosie Matthews, who had just been hired as an agent of the Nigerian government.
Then there is Sheila Jackson-Lee, Democratic representative from Houston, Texas; heiress to the Congressional seat of Barbara Jordan. Ms. Jordan was a woman of high integrity and unimpeachable ethics. Her successor, on the other hand, may lead quite a bit to be desired. Ms. Jackson-Lee has been accused of having the taxpayers foot the bill for her limo ride to work each day – about one block’s distance – in violation of the rules of the House of Representatives.
Ms. Jackson-Lee may have a spotless record of radical abortion advocacy, but one finds more than a few blemishes on her modesty as an elected official. A report in the Weekly Standard last year recounts Jackson-Lee’s lambasting of a staff scheduler for not setting up a ride to a civil rights event. Reports say the congresswoman screamed over the phone, “You don’t understand. I am a queen, and I demand to be treated like a queen!” EMILY’s List is not Jackson-Lee’s only financial patron; she was also the number one recipient of campaign contributions from Enron.
Not only does Jackson-Lee seem to believe she is some type of royalty, but any opposition to her, or her political stances such as reparations, is outright racism. Recently, Ms. Jackson-Lee decried the use of her photo in an e-mail sent out by the GOP in support of the redistricting effort by the Texas Legislature. She called it “racism.” Never mind that her district has been gerrymandered for years in order to provide an African-American with an almost guaranteed Congressional seat.
Finally, EMILY’s List supports another leftist with hyper ambitions: Hillary Rodham Clinton. FrontPage Magazine readers will, no doubt, recall her claim of a “Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy” determined to depose her husband. Despite unquestionable DNA evidence and sleazy revelations of her husband’s carnal transgressions, Mrs. Clinton has never backed away from that conspiracy claim. Her drive to socialize one-seventh of the U.S. economy – health care – in secret meetings conducted behind closed doors and general leftist influence disgraced her husband’s first two years in office, requiring Dick Morris and David Gergen to chart a triangulation strategy to save him from certain political doom.
One might think, from the sorts of women EMILY’s List supports, that their assistance might be based upon purveying baseless conspiracy theories. Formally, there are only three requirements for a candidate to earn EMILY’s support. First, the candidate must be a woman. Never mind that this is sexual discrimination – which EMILY’s List claims to oppose – it’s in a good cause. Second, the candidate must be a Democrat. Finally, she must be committed to radical abortion advocacy; candidates who believe in any kind of restriction on abortion need not apply. Rank anti-Semitism, a dubious financial track record and a burning desire to shake down Islamist rulers are optional.
EMILY’s List requires such hard-line support for abortion that it has withdrawn its support from women who even vote against event the most extreme abortion positions. Mary Landrieu, the recently re-elected Democratic Senator from Louisiana, found that out when she voted in favor of the ban on partial-birth abortion. Although Planned Parenthood and the National Abortion Rights Action League gave Landrieu 80 and 90 percent ratings respectively, EMILY’s List took her off their listing of “Recommended Candidates” for her transgression against extremism. Such positions put EMILY’s candidates far from the (electable) mainstream. Remember that polls show that most Americans, while they don’t want abortion completely outlawed, support many restrictions on the procedure, especially on this grisly late-term variant. Recent polls find that between 60 and 90 percent of Americans oppose partial birth abortion.
The List is not afraid of committing political suicide to support feminist, abortion advocacy. For instance, in last year’s elections, EMILY’s List supported Lynn Rivers’ hopeless campaign against senior Michigan Democrat John Dingell, spending time and resources in a campaign certain to fail. These efforts tend to split the coalition of interests that make up the core Democratic party – labor versus abortion activists, for example – and such tactics make it less likely that the party will unite behind a candidate in the general election. In this case, Dingell’s seat was so safe that the ultimate result was unaffected, but the List cannot expect that trend to hold in more hotly contested districts. Ultimately, its leftist activism is pigeonholing the Democratic Party to an unelectable position.
EMILY’s List does not seek out unpatriotic leftists for support. It merely looks for candidates who share its extreme view of abortion, a view not supported even by most self-described pro-choice Democrats. Its supported candidates prove that the List is fishing in dangerous political waters.