2010 Ohio Lawsuit Continues to Chill Pro-life Group’s Free Speech

Mallory Quigley, 202-223-8073                           

Company Cites Ongoing Lawsuit in Refusal to Erect Pro-life Billboards

Washington, DC ─ Today, the Susan B. Anthony List (SBA List) announced that Lamar Companies will not put up billboards the group commissioned in Indiana to educate constituents on Rep. Joe Donnelly’s (D-IN) record of voting for taxpayer funding of abortion by supporting the 2010 health care legislation. Lamar Companies cited an ongoing lawsuit between the SBA List and former Ohio Congressman Steve Driehaus, as the reason it won’t accept the billboard placement. In the lawsuit, Driehaus has alleged that the SBA List falsely accused him, when they tried erecting similar billboards in his district in 2010 stating that by voting for Obamacare, Driehaus voted for taxpayer funded abortion. At the time, a lawyer representing Rep. Driehaus ordered Lamar Companies not to put up the billboards until the matter was settled by the Ohio Elections Commission, or else he would add them to the complaint. Driehaus’ legal battle against SBA List is ongoing, including his defamation claim in which the former congressman alleges that the SBA List cost him his job and a “loss of livelihood” by educating constituents about his vote in favor of Obamacare. The same as it did then, the lawsuit continues to stifle the free speech of the Susan B. Anthony List.

“This continued assault on our free speech hits at the basic freedoms groups and individuals in this country enjoy to criticize their elected officials and to demand better representation,” said Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser. “As time goes by there is greater and greater acknowledgment of the fact that under Obamacare, taxpayers are forced to fund abortion. Yet despite this growing consensus, the free speech of the SBA List continues to be chilled – first in Ohio, now in Indiana. Ex-Congressman Driehaus’ frivolous lawsuit coupled with an unconstitutional Ohio statute are pushing our pro-life voice out of the public square.

“The Executive Order used to secure the votes of the so-called ‘pro-life’ Democrats including Steve Driehaus and Joe Donnelly was meaningless – and they should know it. As Obamacare is gradually implemented, some former Members of Congress are publicly lamenting their votes. Bart Stupak and Kathy Dahlkemper, for example, have decried the fact that with the HHS Mandate, President Obama violated the abortion funding ‘compromise’ they thought they had secured. They realized much too late what those of us in the pro-life movement knew long ago: that Obamacare was the largest expansion of abortion since Roe. Now, we are continuing to pay the price of speaking the truth.”

During the 2010 midterm elections, the Susan B. Anthony List helped defeat 15 out of 20 of the Democrats who failed to hold firm on their pro-life principles during the vote on the Affordable Care Act. The SBA List launched its Votes Have Consequences program to hold these so-called “pro-life” Democrats accountable for that career-defining vote which opened the flood gates for taxpayer funding of abortion.

The Susan B. Anthony List, and its affiliated Political Action Committees, the SBA List Candidate Fund and Women Speak Out PAC, are dedicated to pursuing policies and electing candidates that will reduce and ultimately end abortion. To that end, the SBA List will emphasize the education, promotion, mobilization, and election of pro-life women. The SBA List is a network of more than 365,000 pro-life Americans nationwide.


Donnelly Billboard

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