Reid letter publicized

The Weekly Standard, edited by William Kristol and Fred Barnes, asserted last week that U.S. Sen. Harry Reid of Nevada is facing his “worst nightmare” because of a fundraising letter sent out by a political action committee. The letter, over Reid's signature, accused Republicans in Congress of “pushing a bill that would have BANNED abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.”

From this, Standard writer John McCormack concluded Reid is supporting late-term abortion. The claim swept through conservative and anti-abortion sites like Life News.

Reid has usually voted against the late-term procedure, and indeed against most abortion rights measures. In some cases, he voted for such measures because they carried unrelated provisions that he felt had to pass, but he opposes abortion and most of his voting record reflects it. In 1990, Nevadans voted in a landslide to retain a state law providing for legal abortion.

McCormack wrote that the mailing was sent out by Reid's own PAC, which is not true. Senate Majority PAC was started in 2010 by three party consultants—Jim Jordan, Monica Dixon, Jeff Forbes—to try to combat the money unleashed, mostly against Democrats, by Citizens United v. Federal Elections Commission, a U.S. Supreme Court ruling. Originally called Commonsense Ten, the PAC's name was changed in 2011.

Reid's own political action committee is called Searchlight Leadership Fund.