Tancredo, Brownback Continue to Spar Over Donor

Presidential candidate Sen. Sam Brownback broadened his criticism of Colorado Congressman Tom Tancredo this week for accepting donations from John Tanton, a well-known population control advocate. Brownback began publicly questioning Tancredo’s pro-life views last month by citing his ties to Tanton, who founded the Northern Michigan Planned Parenthood Association in the 1960s. This week, Brownback’s campaign also charged Tanton with racism, pointing to a memo he wrote in 1988.

“Conservatives and liberals alike have abandoned Tanton once they learn about his bizarre obsession with population control,” Brownback spokesman John Rankin said in a statement Monday. “Tom Tancredo’s ties to Tanton are an embarrassment to his campaign and he should donate the funds to an Iowa crisis pregnancy center.”

continued…Tanton has been accused of racism before, and many of his critics point to the 1988 memo Brownback’s campaign cited. It read in part:

“In this society, will the present majority peaceably hand over its political power to a group that is simply more fertile … Perhaps this is the first instance in which those with their pants up are going to get caught by those with their pants down. As whites see their power and control over their lives declining, will they simply go quietly into the night? Or will there be an explosion?”

Brownback’s campaign has also been paying for automated phone calls to Iowa voters questioning Tancredo’s anti-abortion stance based on Tanton’s donations.

Recently, some Iowa Republican voters have been greeted with this phone message:

Hello, this is an urgent alert for pro-life Republicans in Iowa. Tom Tancredo has accepted tens of thousands of dollars from the founder of a Planned Parenthood network, the largest provider of abortion in the world. Pro-life Republicans have asked Tom Tancredo to donate the money to a crisis pregnancy center here in Iowa that helps women chose life. Tom Tancredo stubbornly refuses to do so. Say no to Tom Tancredo and his Planned Parenthood friend and help end abortion in America. This call is paid for by Brownback for President.

Tancredo said the calls were “despicable and deceitful campaign tactics” and insisted his record on pro-life issues is unassailable.  The Congressman has received a 0% rating by the pro-choice groups NARAL and Planned Parenthood Action Fund and an A rating from the National Right to Life Committee.

In a video posted on his campaign blog, Tancredo demands an apology from Brownback.