NEWS-SENTINEL EDITORIAL: We can do our part to assure conservative values are represented in Washington, D.C.

Indiana’s Republican voters need to gear up to vote this year for the candidate best able to unseat Sen. Joe Donnelly, D-South Bend, to help better represent the conservative values of our state in Washington.

Donnelly, who won his seat in the U.S. Senate six years ago with the help of labor support, spoke to about 60 members of Sheet Metal Workers Local 20 at the Waynedale union hall Sunday to tout his record, which included his vote against the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, the legislation considered Republican lawmakers’ crowning achievement last year.

The Republican effort to dismantle the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) failed last year by just one vote, where the requirement of 60 votes to pass legislation has been a roadblock for the 51 Senate Republicans.

Donnelly’s “no” votes can make all the difference, which is reason enough that conservative voters in Indiana need to support the best candidate among those seeking the Republican nomination in the May primary.

The three main candidates (Rep. Todd Rokita, Rep. Luke Messer and former state lawmaker Mike Braun) squared off Tuesday night in a debate in Indianapolis sponsored by the Indiana chapter of Americans for Prosperity.


• A federal appeals court has heard arguments in Indiana’s appeal of a federal judge’s 2016 order blocking a state law that would ban abortions due to fetal genetic abnormalities such as Down syndrome.

We supported the law, signed by then-Gov. Mike Pence in March 2016, that prohibits abortions sought solely because a fetus has been potentially diagnosed with a disability. But a federal judge in Indianapolis issued a preliminary injunction on June 30, 2016, blocking the law from taking effect the following day.

Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky, which is represented by the ACLU of Indiana, is fighting the appeal.

Indiana Solicitor General Thomas Fisher told the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago on Thursday that the law is a prohibition on “discriminatory abortion.”

The court’s decision could predict outcomes of similar cases across the country.

• We recently praised the Indiana State Health Department for denying an application from a Texas-based nonprofit seeking to establish an abortion clinic in South Bend.

The South Bend Tribune reported the Whole Woman’s Health Alliance has put up several ads in northern Indiana in response to opponents after it appealed the state’s decision.

In a Jan. 3 letter, the state said it found “inaccuracies” in the abortion provider’s paperwork and that the nonprofit failed to meet a requirement that it has “reputable and responsible character.”

If the Health Alliance’s Jan. 22 appeal is successful, a clinic would open on the city’s west side and offer medication-induced abortions to women who are up to 10 weeks pregnant.