The billionaire’s vanity project is the latest to use abortion as a litmus test in deciding support for Democratic candidates…
NextGen America, the left-wing group propped up by the largesse of its billionaire founder, Tom Steyer, will no longer support any candidates who are pro-life. Steyer made the announcement in Atlanta at NetRoots Nation, an annual liberal conference.
Asked if his group would help candidates or sitting lawmakers who don’t support abortion rights, he said, “We do not work for a single candidate who is not pro-choice. I think people like to have litmus tests. We are explicitly pro-choice. We work a lot with Planned Parenthood, we work a lot with NARAL. We are absolutely committed to it.”
The issue of abortion has gripped the Democratic Party since the fallout of the November 2016 elections. Liberal activists like Steyer strongly oppose supporting any pro-life Democrats, while others, including Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and DCCC Chair Rep. Ben Ray Lujan (D-NM), believe it should not be a litmus test for support:
“There is not a litmus test for Democratic candidates,” said Mr. Luján, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, in an interview with The Hill. “As we look at candidates across the country, you need to make sure you have candidates that fit the district, that can win in these districts across America.”
DNC Chair Tom Perez lit the fuse on this explosive issue in May when he said support for abortion rights among Democratic candidates “is not negotiable.” Since then, the party has undergone a virtual identity crisis over the issue, with neither side able to declare victory.
Steyer’s NextGen, perhaps best known an electorally unsuccessful vanity project for the billionaire, lists five areas of focus for the group: climate, equality, health care, immigration, and prosperity. NextGen calls health care a “human right” and claims Republicans “threaten the most vulnerable among us” by their opposition to Obamacare.
The phrase “most vulnerable among us” is intriguing given that the phrase is typically used to describe the rights of the unborn in the pro-life community.
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