Tomorrow, Kevin Smith – one of the leading opponents of women’s reproductive freedom and marriage equality in the Granite State – will formally launch his campaign for the United States Senate. The Union Leader has noted that Smith is "a vocal opponent of legal abortions and also had opposed the law legalizing same-sex marriages." It’s been 10 years since Smith's last failed campaign for statewide office (he couldn’t even win in a Republican primary…) so we wanted to provide a rundown of Smith’s extreme record — and his already rocky campaign for US Senate:
Here are 5 things you need to know about Kevin Smith’s extreme anti-choice, anti-marriage equality record:
Smith Has Repeatedly Supported Defunding Planned Parenthood. In 2011, Smith applauded then-Congressman Mike Pence’s efforts to defund Planned Parenthood saying, Planned Parenthood “is one organization that should simply be off the taxpayers’ backs.” In 2011 after the Executive Council voted to defund Planned Parenthood in New Hampshire, Smith said, “The citizens of New Hampshire don't want their tax dollars to go to the largest provider of abortions, and that's Planned Parenthood.” [Union Leader, 7/17/11]
Smith Supports Banning Abortion. As a State Representative, Smith argued against legislation that would repeal New Hampshire’s 1894 abortion ban saying, “It's unfortunate that this bill comes just four days before Mother's Day when it's one of the most anti-women bills this session.” He also argued that doctors who perform abortions should face penalties, warning, “There will be no more penalties against doctors who damage the life or health of a woman during an abortion.” He also authored an abortion ban in the New Hampshire House. [Union Leader, 5/8/97; Union Leader, 5/1/99]
Smith Is a Leading Opponent of Marriage Equality and Wanted to Repeal Same Sex Marriage. When he served as president of Cornerstone Action, Kevin Smith said a gay marriage repeal was a “top social priority” and that voters “never wanted gay marriage in the first place.” [Union Leader, 11/4/10] In addition to wanting to repeal same sex marriage, Smith also said that being gay “is a lifestyle choice.” [Concord Monitor, 5/10/09]
Smith Couldn’t Even Get Out of a Republican Primary During His Last Campaign. Smith hasn’t held elected office since the 1990s and his last campaign in 2012 ended in failure when he lost the Republican primary. It’s no wonder that pundits have said that “outside of Londonderry, I don’t think anyone has heard of Kevin Smith” and called Smith a "B-tier" candidate with a "big hill to climb" who is "jumping from AA baseball to the Majors” by running for US Senate.
Smith’s Campaign Has Had a Rocky Start. Outright plagiarism and technical difficulties marred Smith's rollout last week. Smith's campaign website was exposed for directly plagiarizing Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton's website and touting Texas' draconian abortion ban. That wasn't the campaign's only "technical difficulty." The same day, Smith tweeted out his campaign launch event — with a link that didn't even work.
“Kevin Smith is running for US Senate so he can bring his extreme, anti-choice, anti-marriage equality agenda to Washington and be a rubber stamp for Mitch McConnell’s backward agenda,” said NHDP Chair Ray Buckley. “Make no mistake — New Hampshire Democrats will spend the next eight months making sure that everyone in New Hampshire knows about his extreme record.”