By Tom Quiner

Colleen Pasnik is a practicing Catholic

Colleen Pasnik

Iowa Democrats resorted to a smear campaign to provide cover in refusing to confirm Colleen Pasnik to the Iowa Board of Medicine.

As background, the Board of Medicine has been in the news in the past year. This is the Board that allowed Planned Parenthood to proceed with “telemed abortions” in Iowa.

In other words, even though a doctor is not present as one should be, according to Iowa law, the Board gave the abortion lobby the green light to provide them via a computer monitor from a remote location. With the press of a button, they could simply dispense abortion pills.

Governor Branstad nominated Ms. Pasnik to the Board earlier this year. She needed a two thirds vote to be confirmed, but came up short after a 29 to 18 vote. The opposition was led by Democratic Senator, Jack Hatch.

What was the beef against Ms. Pasnik? According to Senator Hatch:

“She was accompanied by people who were…arrested and convicted of crimes and bombing of abortion clinics.”

Senator Jack Hatch leads the dissent against the confirmation of Coleen Pasnik

State Senator, Jack Hatch, Democrat

He refers to pro life activist, Cheryl Sullenger, who was convicted of bombing clinic in 1988.

Let us deconstruct Democrats’ deceit on this issue:

1. Ms. Pasnik didn’t even know Ms. Sullenger. They never spoke before or since that meeting. For the record, I was at the same meeting. So was Monsignor Frank Bognanno of Christ the King Catholic Church. So were a whole bunch of other faithful Catholics concerned about the expansion of abortion in Iowa. By this standard, we are all tainted with “guilt by association” even though not a one of us knew Ms. Sullenger.

2. Senator Hatch used the word “people,” not “person,” in referring to the anti-abortion terrorists Ms. Pasnik allegedly chums around with. And yet Ms. Sullenger was the only one at the event convicted of a crime. Mr. Hatch’s intent was to smear all of us in attendance of guilt by association with his use of the plural instead of the singular.

3. The good Senator also used the plural on the word clinics, suggesting that the lot of us bombed multiple clinics. To be clear, Ms. Sullenger was convicted for blowing up a single clinic.

4. Not a single dissenting Democrat bothered to contact Ms. Pasnik to verify her (non) association with Ms. Sullenger. I was nominated to a different commission a year ago. A Democratic Senator contacted me before my confirmation vote to “check me out” (I was confirmed). Why wouldn’t they extend the same courtesy to Ms. Pasnik? Here is why: they were looking for an excuse to vote against her. Had they cleared the air with a simple phone call, it would have been difficult to come up with a reason to vote against her.

What do we know about Ms. Pasnik?

She is a practicing Catholic and heeds the Church’s call to respect human life from conception to natural death.

She is a past director of the Family Life Office for the Archdiocese of Dubuque.

She is the past executive assistant for the Dubuque County Right to Life.

She is the vice president of The Power of Prayer, a group that promotes perpetual Eucharistic Adoration.

I met her a year after Iowa Board of Medicine public hearing at the Christ Our Life Catholic Conference. We have stayed in touch via e-mail for the past year-and-a-half.

Each communication, and I mean EACH, ends with this encouragement: “keep your eyes on the risen Christ.”

This is a person Senate Democrats say is not fit to sit on the Iowa Board of Medicine.

Having tainted Ms. Pasnik by linking her to Ms. Sullenger, Senator Hatch said:

“I think in my judgment that I presented to my caucus that a person like this who has strong beliefs may be unable to provide the non-biased support or judgment to listen to presentations of doctors and providers who come in front of this board on serious matters of medicine.”

To what strong beliefs does he refer? He suggests it is because she hob knobs with terrorists. We know that isn’t an issue for Democrats. After all, Barack Obama has hob knobbed with convicted terrorist, Bill Ayers, who bombed public buildings. These same Democrats voted “yes” for Barack Obama for president. So an association with a bomber of public buildings is certainly not an issue to Democrats.

And in the case of Ms. Pasnik, she didn’t even know a bomber of public buildings. That was simply a Democratic fabrication.

So what does that leave us with but her Catholic belief in the sanctity of life?

Catholics like Ms. Pasnik embrace the Catholic values of peace and justice. As she said:

“I have never advocated violence against anyone, and would never advocate violence and to intimate otherwise borders on slander and libel.”

What kind of people are these Senate Democrats? How could they take a bright, decent person like Colleen Pasnik and drag her name through the mud?

Republican Senator, Mark Chelgren, supported Ms. Pasnik in the strongest terms:

“Here is somebody who lives their life based on their Catholic convictions.”

Evidently, that is a deal-killer for Senate Democrats.

No Comments

  1. Lisa Bourne on April 13, 2012 at 2:17 pm

    George W. Bush, Newt Gingrich, Sarah Palin, Tim Tebow, Clarence Thomas, Dan Quayle, on an on, and now Coleen Pasnik. The politics of personal destruction. Don’t like someone or their position? Smear and besmirch, and do so repeatedly if needed, until others begin to believe the defamation. At least do it enough so that the target become a “polarizing” figure which many will then be forced to avoid. The constructed system in place by which the abortion lobby is allowed in this state to break the law through telemed abortion is shameful. The powers that be blocking debate of fetal pain legislation and this latest display of concocted guilt is shameful as well. All of this to feed the abortion profit machine at the expense of mothers and their children, born and unborn. At the expense as well of the rest of the families of those children who don’t survive life in their mothers’ womb. Because make no mistake, the ripple effect of abortion’s destruction does not end with the mother and her child. This all begs a question. Just who was it that is conducting a war on women?

  2. Steven Brody on April 13, 2012 at 3:10 pm

    After reviewing the roll call vote, I find it stunning but not surprising that Senator Mike Gronstal and Senator Pam Jochum voted to confirm Colleen Pasnik to the Iowa Board of Medicine. It is my understanding that Senator Jochum is the one who first raised concerns about Colleen’s nomination. Those who are not involved will fall prey to Senator Jochum saying to her constituents that she supported the nomination as part of her efforts to curry favor and win re-election in November. How gullible do you think we are? And for Mike Gronstal to vote yes is yet another attempt to offer political cover in his attempt at re-election. This sad episode proves why it is critically important to change the majority in the State Senate.

    • quinersdiner on April 13, 2012 at 3:14 pm

      Steve, thanks for exposing this cynical ploy.

  3. skyedog27 on April 14, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    As usual Tom and Lisa, you are spot on.

  4. […] This is but the latest indication of anti-Catholicism, as reported by Quiner’s Diner on April 13th (“Dishonest Iowa Democrats smear a good woman”). […]

  5. […] Dishonest Iowa Democrats smear a good woman. […]

  6. […] The Iowa Senate, controlled by Democrats, rejected the nominee with a shameless smear campaign grounded in deceit and disinformation. [Dishonest Democrats smear a good woman.] […]

  7. […] Since I knew this woman, whose only crime was being a practicing Catholic, I set the record straight in a piece which appeared in the Des Moines Register, which you can read here: “Dishonest Iowa Democrats smear a good woman.” […]

  8. […] We are living in an age of power politics. 2010′s liberal BOM jettisoned evidence in a heartbeat to expand the reach of abortion via a practice that has been banned in many states. Even more, Democrats in the Iowa Senate blocked the appointment of a pro life Catholic woman to the Board by dishonestly smearing her reputation (which Quiner’s Diner called them on). […]

  9. […] Dishonest Iowa Democrats smear a good woman. […]

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