Seth Tupper at The Rapid City Journal is writing about a topic I pointed out last week; that Democrats have elected a pro-life chair to lead a party that is decidedly pro-choice:
Ann Tornberg, a 59-year-old retired teacher from Beresford, won the state chairmanship with 73 percent of the votes cast by party officials during a gathering last weekend in Oacoma.
During her unsuccessful campaign for a state Senate seat earlier this year, she advertised herself as pro-life.
The national Democratic Party platform includes a paragraph of staunchly pro-choice language, while the South Dakota Democratic Party platform’s only apparent reference to abortion is this sentence: “Every woman has the right to make her own medical decisions.”
Nevertheless, she does not think her position on abortion conflicts with the party’s platform, which she said is broad enough to include a spectrum of views on abortion.
When asked to define what the phrase “pro-life” means to her she said, “I believe it’s a highly personal issue. I side with South Dakota voters who in the past two statewide votes have also kept it a personal issue,” Tornberg said, referring to failed abortion-restriction ballot issues. “I reject government interference in trying to legislate against this personal decision, and I’m pro-life.”
“Maybe this is a move in one direction toward a more moderate wing gaining some strength,” Schaff said of Tornberg’s election. “Possibly she’ll be able to recruit some more moderate candidates that a more progressive chairperson would have difficulty recruiting.”
I think there are two big questions arising from the story the Journal did.
First, is this allegedly pro-life former candidate parsing her former support… and reversing her pro-life stance with a statement such as “I side with South Dakota voters who in the past two statewide votes have also kept it a personal issue?” Because that doesn’t sound like any pro-life candidate I know. And in fact sounds decidedly pro-choice.
Secondly, is the move going to help bring back dems who have abandoned the party? Or is the liberal wing of the Democrat party still in control?