Though U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH)’s pro-life credibility has been described as ‘crumbled’ by a leading Democratic pro-life group, some supporters of “common ground” efforts to reduce abortion are still introducing him as a pro-life politician.
Kristen Day, President of Democrats for Life of America (DFLA), wrote in a July 16 essay on Catholic Online that pro-life Democrats have been “proud” of Rep. Ryan, who has in the past served on DFLA’s national advisory board.
However, she wrote, Rep. Ryan’s formerly pro-life record has become “more and more pro-abortion,” possibly because of his aspirations to statewide office in Ohio.
“After his last vote in favor of taxpayer funded abortions, his credibility as a pro-life legislator has crumbled with the national pro-life community,” Day added.
Rep. Ryan recently voted against a proposal to consider the Tiahart-Davis Amendment, which would have preserved a federal funding ban on abortions in the District of Columbia.
Day explained that DFLA was forced to “quietly” remove Rep. Ryan from their advisory board last year.
“DFLA gave Congressman Ryan ample opportunities to prove he’s committed to protecting life but he has turned his back on the community at every turn,” she added.
“For now, pro-life Democrats have lost a promising, rising star to the pro-choice movement,” her essay concluded, noting that he would be welcomed back if he returned to a pro-life stand.
In a July 17 Letter to the Editor of the Washington Post, Fred Rotondaro, chairman of Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good, and Thomas P. Melady, a member of the group’s advisory council, advocated legislation proposed by Rep. Ryan, whom they described as “pro-life.”
Discussing the confirmation hearings for Supreme Court Justice nominee Judge Sonia Sotomayor, Rotondaro and Melady criticized “culture-war theatrics” that “do nothing to support pregnant women.” They claimed it was time to end the United States’ “divisive abortion battles.”
The two endorsed legislation by “pro-life” Rep. Ryan and Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.) that had as its goal “reducing the number of abortions.”
Their letter did not mention the place of the unborn child in the abortion debate.