Martha Coakley on Abortion
Narrator: "Who is Scott Brown, really? A Republican. In lockstep with Washington Republicans. He'll block tougher oversight of Wall Street. Give more tax breaks to the wealthiest. Oppose new prescription coverage for millions of seniors. Brown even favors letting hospitals deny emergency contraception to rape victims. He lacks understanding and seriousness. In times like these, we can't afford a Republican like Scott Brown."
The ad is basically on track, factually, until we come to a claim that "Brown even favors letting hospitals deny emergency contraception to rape victims." Brown did vote for a 2005 amendment for that purpose, but the ad doesn't mention is that Brown voted for the underlying bill anyway, even after the Republican governor vetoed it.
"I know that none of the young women wanted to do this,'' Coakley said in a recent interview. "Many of them had tried to be careful or used contraception and it failed, or they did not understand. They had pointed out to me, what I still think is true, that we don't do a very good job around sex education for a lot of young women.''
As a district attorney, she called on the Legislature to create a stronger buffer zone between protesters and abortion clinics. As attorney general, she enforced and successfully defended the law against a legal challenge.
"We are pleased that the First Circuit has upheld this important law, which enhances public safety and access to medical facilities," said Coakley. "The court agreed that the buffer zone law does not violate the First Amendment because it leaves open ample opportunities for civil engagement on public ways outside of reproductive clinics."
The buffer zone law was signed by Gov. Deval Patrick and took effect in Nov. 2007. In May 2007, Coakley testified before the Legislature in support of the passage of the legislation.
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Joe L. Kennedy
Newly elected in 2008 & seated in 2009:
Newly appointed in 2009;
special election in 2010:
Announced retirement as of 2010:
Up for 6-year term in 2010:
(13 Democrats; 15 Republicans)
Senate Votes (analysis)