Written by Laurie Higgins
Almost all of those who have emailed us following our exposé of Dr. Arie Friedman’s pro-abortion position have expressed shock about his views, which he does not include on his website and which we have learned are even more extreme than we realized.
Although Friedman did not return IFI’s survey on his positions or the survey sent out by Illinois Citizens for Life, he did express his views to the Buffalo Grove Patch in June:
“Friedman indicated he supports a women’s right to choose. ‘I am completely prochoice,’ he said.”
If you read the short article in the Buffalo Grove Patch, you’ll see that Friedman opposes even parental notification laws pertaining to abortion. He and his opponent Julie Morrison are vying for the dubious honor of most anti-life candidate.
Illinois Review exposes more about Friedman’s futile efforts at obfuscation, efforts accurately described as “tortured.” His campaign spokesperson Paul Miller explains that Friedman is a Conservative Jew, and that “The reality is that the Conservative Jewish religious view on the issue of abortion would be most appropriately characterized as pro-choice.”
He hastens to add that the pro-abortion “Personal PAC and Terry Cosgrove recently sent a letter to voters in our district stating that Arie is so extremely pro-life he should be equated with Todd Akin of Missouri.”
Does Miller think Republicans just fell off the proverbial turnip truck? Does he think we won’t notice that he never specifically stated whether Friedman endorses the pro-abortion position of Conservative Judaism or the pro-life position of Todd Akin?
Fortunately, we don’t have to wait for Miller to clarify his statement because Friedman clarified it in his flyer and in his interview with the Buffalo Grove Patch.
Many Republicans are now wondering what his views are on other social issues about which they care deeply.
IFA did receive one criticism for referring to Dr. Arie Friedman’s position as “anti-life.” IFI’s position on abortion is commonly called “pro-life.” The opposite of “pro-life” is “anti-life.” Those are shorthand terms used to denote political positions on abortion. They are used not just by us but by many.
Although Illinois Family Action’s positions most often align with those of the Republican Party, we’re not an arm of the Republican Party, and if the views of candidates from either party undermine truth, we will oppose them.
We also, however, understand the pragmatics of politics. All that to say, we try to balance truth and strategic political considerations.
IFA does not believe that only liberal Republicans can get elected in the 29th District. Do people really believe that most Republicans in the 29th District are so deeply committed to abortion that even in this fiscal climate, they would vote for a Democrat? In other words, in this fiscal climate, we believe that even pro-choice Republicans would vote for a pro-life Republican over a Democrat.
Moreover, if there are never any negative consequences for the Illinois GOP’s support for and promotion of anti-life, anti-marriage candidates, we will continue to get them, and little by little the IL GOP will become weaker and weaker on the social issues.
Conservative Republicans are continually badgered into “holding their noses” and voting for Republicans who won’t defend life or marriage. Well, turnabout is fair play, particularly when issues of life and truth are on the line. How about the Illinois Republican Party badger liberal Republicans to hold their noses and vote for fiscally conservative, pro-life, pro-marriage Republicans?
There will always be those who will argue that for the good of the party, or for the purpose of ousting Illinois Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago) or Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan (D-Chicago), or for advancing some piece of critical legislation, conservative (that is to say, real) Republicans have an ethical obligation to vote for faux-Republicans, but somehow those reasons never apply to liberal Republicans. No one tells them that for the good of the party, they should vote for a pro-life, pro-marriage candidate. Then when social liberals get into office, they start voting for pernicious legislation pertaining to abortion, civil unions, marriage, comprehensive sex ed, “hate crimes,” or bullying.
If we take a firm stand against social liberalism, eventually the Illinois GOP will start looking for and supporting Republicans whom social conservatives will support.
“Mark Rhoads” left a comment following the Illinois Review post on the Friedman debacle that eloquently points to the reasons not to vote for Friedman:
This is not a topic for humor at all, but this part of the Dr. Friedman campaign statement does cause eyebrows to raise: “None of this should detract from Arie’s and our campaign’s desire to have a relationship with both the pro-life and pro-choice community.”
I am pro-life and care about the issue a great deal which is why I seldom would make a joke about the controversy, but I have to admit that this odd statement above reminded me of the late GOP State Rep. Helmutt W. Stolle of Chicago who died in 1977. Stolle was not the brightest light bulb in the Springfield socket but he owned a popular bakery in Chicago where voters flocked. Some reporter once asked him what his position on abortion was. Stolle replied in all sincerity, “If someone can work out a bill that is acceptable to both sides, I’ll vote for it.”
There is little room for compromise between life and death for the unborn defenseless child, and therein lies the sophistry and tragedy of Arie Friedman who as a physician should understand better than most people that abortion is taking a human life.