City council district 5Past recipients of Family PAC funds include McCain-Palin, Rick Santorum, Melissa Hart, Tom Corbett, Pat Toomey, Jane Orie, Phil Ignelzi and Sarah PAC.
Corey O'Connor raised just under $33,000 this year -- not an earth-shattering total, but thanks largely to the political inheritance of his father, he came into the year with more than $127,500 -- and still has more than $100,000 left. His biggest contributors are union PACs -- Steamfitters #449 gave him $2,000, for example. O'Connor's boss, Congressman Mike Doyle, helped his protege out with a $1,000 PAC contribution.
But progressives take note: O'Connor has also received $500 from Family PAC. That PAC, operated by the Donahue family (of Federated Investors fame), typically backs pro-life candidates. Family PAC also supported Republicans Tim Murphy and Heather Heidelbaugh so far this year. And it contributed $1,000 to the Susan B. Anthony List, which seeks to elect pro-life women around the country. [Emphasis added]
Family PAC certainly overwhelmingly favors Republicans, but Corey O'Connor is certainly not a Republican, so it doesn't necessarily follow that because they back anti choice candidates that O'Connor is anti choice (nor does it necessarily follow that because they support him that he supports them). But, it sure would be nice to know both what O'Connor's position is on choice and why Family PAC felt compelled to back him.
And, at this point I feel compelled to note that Chris Zurawsky -- also running in District 5 -- received the most endorsements by progressive groups (Gertrude Stein Political Club, Democracy for Pittsburgh and Pittsburgh 14th Ward Independent Democratic Club); and that Zurawsky is pro choice; and that abortion-related issues do come up in City Council Chambers (also, compelled to repeat that I've been paid by the Friends of Chris Zurawsky campaign to create and maintain his website).
UPDATE: Via the Pittsburgh City Paper:
So where's O'Connor on this issue? Our very own Chris Young asked him that question awhile back. It seems safe to say that O'Connor was not as enthusiastic about the issue as Zurawsky is. But O'Connor did respond that if elected to council, "I would support the bubble-zone" -- a reference to a protester-free area that is maintained around the entrance to family-planning cliincs. O'Connor later added that he didn't think local elected officials "should make a decision on someone's personal life and how they want to choose."