Sen. Tina Smith (D-MN) spent years as an abortion lobbyist fighting against “commonsense” legislation throughout the Midwest before she ever entered politics.
From 2003 to 2006, Smith served as Planned Parenthood’s vice president for external affairs for Minnesota, South Dakota, and North Dakota, where she fought against informed-consent laws as well as legislation that would provide resources for women seeking to give up their children for adoption.
Smith testified against Minnesota’s “Positive Alternatives Act” in 2005, which now provides nonprofit agencies state grants to help women with medical care, housing, and child care after they carry their pregnancies to term.
Smith claimed that the bill wrongfully provided taxpayer money to organizations that don’t inform pregnant women about all of their legal options, specifically abortion.
“And when any of us seeks medical care, we expect all of the facts, not just some of them. This is the standard of care that is available every day in health care clinics and doctors’ offices across Minnesota, including in Minnesota’s 22 family planning clinics,” Smith said.
Smith, however, spoke out against Minnesota’s “Women’s Right to Know” law in 2003, which requires women seeking abortions to be provided with information on the “medical risks” associated with the procedure, the gestational age of the child, and the medical assistance benefits available to the mother.
In 2005, a provision was added to the law that required abortion providers to inform women who are more than 20 weeks pregnant that an anesthetic could alleviate the pain caused to the child during the procedure.
According to The Washington Examiner, Smith also testified against one-day waiting period laws, which require 24 hours to elapse between a patient’s initial intake and the abortion. During Smith’s tenure with Planned Parenthood, the organization was Minnesota’s leading abortion provide, aborting an average of ten Minnesota children per day in 2006, The Examiner adds.
Smith, who was appointed to her seat after Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) resigned, is currently the only sitting U.S. senator to have ever worked for Planned Parenthood, a record she is touting in her race against Republican Karin Housley.
“It is an organization that is deeply trusted to be there for women, men, and families when it’s needed, and that’s something I’m very proud of,” Smith recently told The Star Tribune. “I believe that my work extending health care to women through Planned Parenthood is something most people will respect and do respect.”
Smith left her position with Planned Parenthood in 2006 after she was recruited by Gov. Mark Dayton to serve as his chief of staff and then lieutenant governor. While serving in these capacities, Dayton vetoed several pro-life bills, including a bill that would stop the taxpayer funding of elective abortions, and another that required the licensure and inspection of abortion facilities.
Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life (MCCL), the state’s oldest pro-life advocacy group, is leading the charge against Smith in her campaign against Housley, with Executive Director Scott Fischbach suggesting that “Minnesotans need to know about the extremism of her views before casting their votes in the 2018 election.”
“Tina Smith doesn’t just support abortion,” he continued. “She lobbied on its behalf. She worked to defeat any conceivable limitations on it. She was an executive director for the state’s abortion leader. She is the abortion senator.”
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