Christian Coalition Leader Loses Big in Primary for Lieutenant Governor of Georgia
Former Christian Coalition Leader and chairman of the Georgia Republican Party Ralph Reed lost the primary for the Lieutenant Governor of Georgia yesterday. Reed suffered a sound defeat, conceding with less than half of the precincts counted. Georgia state senator Casey Cagle defeated Reed with a margin of 56 to 44 percent.
Many attribute Reed's loss to his ties with lobbyist Jack Abramoff, according to Time. Abramoff, a lobbyist for some Indian tribes with casinos, used his connections to funnel more than $5.3 million from these casinos to Reed through nonprofit organizations in return for Reed's work urging Christian supporters to boycott casinos in competition with Abramoff's clients, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. "I would have voted for Reed but it really bothered me that he took that money for casinos," said Georgia voter Mike Craig in an interview for Time.
Reed has also been linked to Abramoff's work as a lobbyist for the Northern Mariana Islands, a US territory, and its garment industry. A Ms. investigation documented what amounts to indentured servitude for the garment workers on the Islands: substandard living and dangerous working conditions, forced abortions, and a declining labor market that has left many women few options than to be trafficked into the sex trade.
Reed is still the owner of a political consulting and lobbying firm, but getting new business may be difficult because of his ties to Abramoff and his primary defeat.
Media Resources: Atlanta Journal-Constitution 7/16/06; Time 7/19/06; Feminist Daily News 7/18/06; NPR 7/19/06; Washington Post 7/19/06
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .