Our Common Good

We’re glad Richard Mourdock’s extreme opposition to abortion even for rape survivors won’t make it to the Senate.

We’re glad Richard Mourdock’s extreme opposition to abortion even for rape survivors won’t make it to the Senate.

Richard Mourdock’s dream just died.



May his views on women’s health die with his election dreams.

The first bipartisan poll since Republican Richard Mourdock made his widely debated comments on rape, pregnancy and God indicates that what was once a toss-up is now a double-digit lead for his opponent, Democrat U.S. Rep. Joe Donnelly.

Most significantly, women voters are driving the divide, according to the new Howey/DePauw Indiana Battleground Poll, taken Sunday through Tuesday.

Donnelly leads 47 percent to 36 percent, according to the poll, with Libertarian Andrew Horning backed by 6 percent. Another 11 percent remain undecided.

I’ve struggled with it myself for a long time, but I came to realize that life is that gift from God. And even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen.

Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate and Indiana State Treasurer Richard Mourdock on abortion and pregnancy resulting from rape.

Essentially, if you have a uterus, and you become pregnant from a rape, just remember — that’s God turning rapey lemons into blessed unwanted lemonade. </sarcasm>

Oh, and what’s that Mitt Romney? You’re supporting him? In an ad posted this Sunday that’s all over Indiana’s airwaves?

Yep, because there’s nothing worse than Obamacare amirite? Y’know, other than being forced to bear your rapist’s child because your senator said his God said it should be so…

In a statement released this evening, DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz said: “Richard Mourdock’s rape comments are outrageous and demeaning to women. Unfortunately, they’ve become part and parcel of the modern Republican Party’s platform toward women’s health, as Congressional Republicans like Paul Ryan have worked to outlaw all abortions and even narrow the definition of rape. As Mourdock’s most prominent booster and the star of Mourdock’s current campaign ads, Mitt Romney should immediately denounce these comments and request that the ad featuring him speaking directly to camera on Mourdock’s behalf be taken off the air.”

Agreed. Your move, governor. 

(via cognitivedissonance)


INDIANAPOLIS — A federal appeals court has ruled that Indiana can’t cut off funding for Planned Parenthood just because the organization provides abortions.

The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago on Tuesday upheld the core portion of a lower court order that said Indiana cannot enforce a state law that barred abortion providers from collecting Medicaid funds for any medical services.

Indiana’s Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels signed a law in May 2011 that made Indiana the first state to deny the organization Medicaid funds for general health services including cancer screenings.



The Romney-Mourdock Ticket (by americanbridge21st)

 Romney Campaign Says He Disagrees With Mourdock&#8217;s Rape Comments - but won&#8217;t say if he still endorses this jerk.

 Romney Campaign Says He Disagrees With Mourdock’s Rape Comments - but won’t say if he still endorses this jerk.

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is plugging Richard [pregnancy from rape is a gift from God] Mourdock for Indiana’s open seat in the fight for control of the Senate.

In a new ad airing this week, Romney accuses Democratic candidate Joe Donnelly of voting too often with Democratic leaders in Washington. He also calls Mourdock the “51st vote” to repeal the federal health care law.

Indiana Treasurer Richard Mourdock became the latest Republican to wander into eyebrow-raising territory when it came to the discussion of rape and abortion during a Senate debate Tuesday night.

Defending his stance that abortion should be illegal even in the case of rape, Mourdock explained that pregnancy resulting from nonconsensual sex is the will of God.

“I’ve struggled with it myself for a long time, but I came to realize that life is that gift from God,” Mourdock said. “And even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen.”

BOBBIE LUCIER: I just - I don’t like him. Can’t stand to look at him. I don’t like his wife. She’s far from the first lady. It’s about time we get a first lady in there that acts like a first lady and looks like a first lady.

But there are two ways that Indiana’s Senate race may well play an important role in the nation’s political future.

The first is that it could determine which party controls the Senate. Real Clear Politics ranks it as one of nine “toss-up” Senate races. Winning at least four of those would give Democrats a 51-seat majority. 

Nate Silver, the crack political analyst for the New York Times, recently wrote that “if I were given just one guess at the composition of the new Senate, I would go with this: 50 Republicans, 49 Democrats and one independent, the former governor of Maine, Angus King.” King, who is winning by a wide margin, is expected to caucus with Democrats. So the result of that scenario would be an evenly divided Senate, with the vice president being the swing vote. But Silver pegs the Indiana Senate race as “leans Republican.” A Donnelly win would give Democrats a 51-seat majority. The most recent polling indicates that the race is a dead heat–Mourdock is ahead by two points in one poll, Donnelly by two points in another one.

Beyond control of the Senate, though, there’s an even more important reason that the race matters: Mourdock is going all-in on Tea Party extremism.

That extremism is actually the reason he’s still in the race. Mourdock challenged and beat the long-serving senator from Indiana, Richard Lugar, in the Republican primary last spring, and he did so with strong backing from Tea Party organizations, who have long despised Lugar as a useless moderate.


Mourdock makes the argument that the Obama administration’s bailout of the automobile manufacturers in 2009 was equivalent to slaveholders’ exploitation of their slaves. Seriously. The equivalence being that the bailout hurt state workers’ pension funds and benefited big banks. Mourdock filed a lawsuit in the hope of making that argument before the Supreme Court, which declined to hear the case.

But of course, the fate of the pension funds wasn’t really Mourdock’s point in the speech. The point was to expose Barack Obama as a socialist tyrant. Obama’s plan “is to divide America, and it is working,” Mourdock says near the end of the speech. “We heard Mr. Obama say, ‘They didn’t build that.’ When he uses that language he’s trying to build the foundation so that more people can have their assets taken away by government under this massive collective system that he sees as the inherent future of America.”

In addition to opposing the auto bailout, Mourdock flatly denies climate change; hopes to repeal the Affordable Care Act; believes that privatizing Medicare is a good idea; strongly supports the rights of gun owners; and believes that liberal judicial activism is a threat to the nation.

Those are just run-of-the-mill positions in today’s GOP, of course. What sets Mourdock apart is his tone. There’s an anger and a wild-eyed zeal in him that you just can’t imagine in Lugar. After his victory in the primary, for example, Mourdock sent out a fundraising letter that rubbed salt in the wounds of Lugar’s supporters. “Against all odds and with the establishment working day and night to defeat me,” Mourdock wrote, “we retired a 36-year entrenched incumbent senator, who routinely betrayed conservative voters to push through some of the most radical aspects of President Obama’s agenda.” That letter prompted a columnist for an Indiana newspaper to write that in three decades of covering Indiana’s political scene, “I have never seen anything quite like Richard Mourdock’s U.S. Senate campaign.”

If Mourdock is willing to burn his bridges to Lugar’s supporters in that fasion, you can imagine his attitude toward Democrats. He has promised that, if elected, he will bring more partisanship to Congress. “It is bipartisanship that has taken this country to the very brink of bankruptcy,” he told the Conservative Political Action Conference in February.

BP recalls bad gasoline in Indiana, but after $1,200 repair bills for some drivers


Thousands of drivers in northwest Indiana face hefty car repair bills after BP sold some 2.1 million gallons of contaminated gasoline that can foul their engines. BP has recalled the bad fuel and says it will pay for repairs — but first drivers have to get it out of their tanks.

BP says “a higher than normal level of polymeric residue” contaminated 50,000 barrels of regular unleaded gasoline from its Whiting, Ind., refinery shipped between Aug. 13 and Aug. 17. That fuel went to hundreds of gas stations in northern Indiana — some under the BP brand, but many independent stations as well. Soon after, scores of drivers began coming to repair shops reporting hard-starting and stalling engines, “check engine” lights, odd noises and other signs of engine trouble.

Getting contaminated fuel out of a vehicle isn’t as easy as just draining the gas tank. Every part that the gas touched between the tank and the engine has to be flushed and cleaned as well, and bad fuel has been known to ruin higher-pressure fuel injectors common to newer vehicles. Not every car will need a mechanic; people who bought only a few gallons could try to dilute their bad gas with premium unleaded and get by. A simple fix might run $200 to $300, but a few owners have already said their repair bills have topped $1,200.

Gasoline recalls are rare but not without precedent; last year a Minnesota refinery had to halt sales of 11,000 gallons after it mixed more than 10 percent ethanol into the fuel. BP says people who are affected can call a customer help line with their receipts and ask to have their repair costs reimbursed — although there’s no getting back the time and hassle of going through a needless repair in the first place. As for BP’s bottom line, the oil giant earned $3.7 billion last quarter, so even if every car required $1,200 worth of repairs, BP’s bank account wouldn’t run low.


A small group of protesters in Elkhart, Indiana gathered near a tea party billboard on Monday, decrying the political ad for comparing President Barack Obama to terrorist leader Osama bin Laden.

The billboard, paid for by a tea party group We the People of Marshall and Fulton County, says: “The Navy Seals removed one threat to America. The voters must remove the other.”

The demonstration was organized by the Elkhart County Democrats, Occupy Elkhart activists and Indiana Senate candidate Jim Ball (D), according to The Elkhart Truth. The protesters described the billboard as “ignorant” and chastised the tea party group for “adding militaristic jingoism” to the political debate.

Sue Chilberg, a local Tea Party activist, told The Elkhart Truth that she supports the billboard because it urges voters “to do something about the very real threat of socialism.”

Don Nunemaker, the leader of We the People of Marshall and Fulton County, said he predicted the ad would upset some people. But he said the group has no plans to take the billboard down until November 1.


WASHINGTON — U.S. Senate candidate for Indiana Richard Mourdock is again comparing slavery to modern politics, this time likening it to President Obama’s Chrysler bailout.

The Republican state treasurer argued during his primary contest against Sen. Richard Lugar that the climate now is like that before the Civil War, with Obama and Democrats in the roll of slave owners.

Late last week, Mourdock made the comparison even more direct, telling a crowd in Dallas that Obama’s Chrysler bailout showed the same principle that Abraham Lincoln decried in his famous debates with Stephen Douglas.

Mourdock, speaking to a PAC convention organized by the Tea Party group FreedomWorks on July 26, said that Lincoln’s argument was about the principles of right and wrong. What was wrong was the “divine right of kings … that would give power to someone so that they might say to someone else, ‘you work, you sweat, you toil, you earn bread — and I shall eat it.’”

h/t: HuffPost Politics

As more states put in place strict voter ID rules, an AP review of temporary ballots from Indiana and Georgia, which first adopted the most stringent standards, found that more than 1,200 such votes were tossed during the 2008 general election.

During sparsely attended primaries this year in Georgia, Indiana and Tennessee, the states implementing the toughest laws, hundreds more ballots were blocked.

The numbers suggest that the legitimate votes rejected by the laws are far more numerous than are the cases of fraud that advocates of the rules say they are trying to prevent. Thousands more votes could be in jeopardy for this November, when more states with larger populations are looking to have similar rules in place.