All four candidates who are running for Iowa’s Third District Congressional seat met in Shenandoah last night for a four-way debate. Each candidate was asked whether he’d support a constitutional amendment to ban abortions, except in the cases of rape or incest. Republican incumbent Tom Latham says he has a  100% pro-life voting record.

Latham says he supports the amendment that provides the exceptions for rape, incest or the life of the mother. “I think where that applies and should apply with the federal government is in the funding areas to make sure that what they call Mexico City Policy, that we’re not funding abortions overseas,” Latham says.

“It’s a moral issue and I will always be pro-life.” Socialist Workers Party candidate David Rosenfeld says he’s 100% in favor of a woman’s right to choose. “Without the right to control reproduction, without the right to control her body, women cannot achieve full social equality in this society,” Rosenfeld says.

“Since Roe versus Wade legalized abortion in this country, there has been a non-stop attack on that right, eroding it year after year.”

Democrat incumbent Leonard Boswell says he trusts women to make up their own minds. “Women are able to make a decision,” Boswell says. “They share in our society in every respect. We’ve gotta’ have some trust. I trust my daughters. I trust my wife. I trust women and I think having some elected official decide what a woman is going to do with her life is just uncalled-for and unnecessary.”

While saying he’s pro-life, independent candidate Scott Batcher says he believes federal funding for Planned Parenthood should continue, because of the educational services it provides.

“When we look at funding Planned Parenthood, are we funding all companies like Planned Parenthood for their increased education?” Batcher says. “The more we educate the public, the less abortions are going to occur. We’re going to reduce that number the more we educate the public. Doing away with that education is not what we need to do.”

Wednesday night’s 90-minute debate took place at the KMA studios in Shenandoah.

By Mike Peterson, KMA, Shenandoah