by Brandon McGinley

Wednesday was another dispiriting example of how far the apple can fall from the tree.  Pennsylvania Sen. Bob Casey, son of the late pro-life champion Gov. Robert P. Casey, Sr., voted yesterday for a bill designed to undo the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Hobby Lobby v. Burwell.  The bill would amend the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which was the basis for the Hobby Lobby decision, and force owners of companies like Lancaster County’s Conestoga Wood Specialties to pay for abortifacient drugs that violate their consciences.  

More than that, as Ramesh Ponnuru notes, the bill would be “all the congressional authorization for an abortion mandate with no religious-freedom protections that any administration would need.”  That is, if a future administration decided to extend the “preventative care” mandate beyond abortifacient drugs to surgical abortions, Casey’s bill would eliminate conscience protections for organizations like the Little Sisters of the Poor.  

Happily, the supporters of the bill did not have the 60 votes needed to move the bill forward.

This is yet another example of the withering “pro-life” credentials of Sen. Casey.  He supported the Affordable Care Act, which places taxpayers on the hook for elective abortions, and which precipitated the current religious liberty fights over contraceptive and abortifacient drugs and procedures.  Furthermore, Sen. Casey failed to support a commonsense, non-binding resolution in the Senate that would have called for investigations in the practices of abortion clinics after revelation of the Kermit Gosnell horrors.  Instead he stood on the sidelines as his radical pro-choice colleagues killed the resolution.

Sen. Bob Casey cynically trades on his family name to mislead voters into thinking he is meaningfully pro-life.  His behavior is an affront to the people of Pennsylvania–and to the memory of his courageous father.