Despite Pledge to Protect Roe v Wade, Democratic Leadership Continue to Endorse Anti-Abortion Rep.

© AP Photo / Evan VucciSpeaker of the House Nancy Pelosi of Calif., pauses as she speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill, Thursday, Feb. 3, 2022, in Washington
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi of Calif., pauses as she speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill, Thursday, Feb. 3, 2022, in Washington - Sputnik International, 1920, 06.05.2022
On May 2, Politico leaked a draft of the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v Wade and end federal protections of abortion rights. The news drew widespread condemnation from the Democratic party.
Despite claims from Democratic leadership that the party is doing everything possible to protect abortion rights in the wake of the leaked Supreme Court decision to strike down Roe v Wade, prominent Democrats are lining up to support the lone anti-choice Democrat in the House of Representatives.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer and Democratic Caucus Chair Hakeem Jeffries have all announced support for Rep. Henry Cuellar against his progressive and pro-choice primary challenger in Texas’ 28th Congressional District.
The challenger, Jessica Cisneros, fell a point and a half short of Cuellar in their primary election but since Cuellar failed to get a majority, a runoff election will be held on May 24.
Demonstrators protest outside of the U.S. Supreme Court Tuesday, May 3, 2022 in Washington - Sputnik International, 1920, 06.05.2022
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Cisneros, who had previously remained quiet as her party’s leadership endorsed her opponent, has called on them to renounce their endorsement of Cuellar in the wake of the leaked Supreme Court decision.
“I am calling on Democratic Party leadership to withdraw their support of Henry Cuellar, who is the last anti-choice Democrat in the House,” Cisneros said in an emailed statement on Wednesday. “On May 24, we will defeat the last anti-choice Democrat and South Texas will finally have a representative in their corner that will fight for their health care and freedom. I hope Democratic Party Leadership won’t stand in the way of delivering for South Texans”
Cuellar was the lone Democrat to vote against the Women’s Health Protection Act in September. It still managed to narrowly pass the House but failed in the Senate.
After the Supreme Court decision was leaked, Democratic leadership pledged to protect abortion rights in the media. Nancy Pelosi, in a joint statement with Senate Leader Chuck Schumer, said the decision represents “the greatest restriction of rights in the past fifty years – not just on women but on all Americans.”
President Joe Biden released a statement after the decision was leaked saying that voters need to elect “pro-choice Senators and a pro-choice majority in the House,” so he can sign “legislation that codifies Roe.”
But the party’s leadership has chosen a different strategy in Texas. Clyburn even hosted a get out the vote rally in support of Cuellar on Wednesday. “We have a big-tent party,” Clyburn told local media covering the event. “I don’t believe we ought to have a litmus test in the Democratic Party.”
Former Vice President Mike Pence speaks at a fundraiser for Carolina Pregnancy Center on Thursday, May 5, 2022, in Spartanburg, S.C. Pence made his second trip to the state in less than a week to headline an event for the crisis pregnancy center in early-voting South Carolina as he continues to mull a possible 2024 presidential bid. - Sputnik International, 1920, 06.05.2022
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In addition to Cuellar’s anti-abortion views, his campaign took a hit after the FBI raided his home and campaign office in January. While no charges have been issued yet, it is believed the raid is in relation to a federal investigation into the country of Azerbaijan and US business men with ties to the country. Cuellar was recently a co-chair of the Congressional Azerbaijan Caucus.
Cisneros has received support from some progressive leaning members of the Democratic party, including Massachusetts Senators Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey, New York Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Jamaal Bowman as well as Independent Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.
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