An Idaho state senator yelled at a group of college students lobbying for bills on birth control and sex education, telling them “abortion is murder” and saying he thinks their work “stinks,” hours after he canceled a meeting with them.
About a dozen University of Idaho students who are part of Generation Action, a group linked with a local Planned Parenthood, traveled about 300 miles to Boise to lobby for the health measures, The Associated Press reported Tuesday.
They were scheduled to meet with state Sen. Dan Foreman (R), but he abruptly canceled the meeting Monday morning.
The students left a note as well as condoms in Foreman’s office before meeting with other lawmakers. But the group soon ran into Foreman in the halls of the state capitol.
“Abortion is murder, I stand against it. I am a Roman Catholic and a conservative Republican. I think what you guys are doing stinks,” Foreman was filmed telling the students.
“That is your choice,” one person is heard saying.
“You’re damn right it’s my choice, so stay out of my office. The next time you stand in my office you’ll be dealing with ISP,” Foreman said, appearing to refer to Idaho State Police.
Paul Dillon, the public affairs director for Planned Parenthood of Greater Washington and North Idaho, told the AP that the students weren't there to discuss abortion and called Foreman "completely unhinged."
“Even if you disagree with what we have to say, there’s no excuse for that kind behavior,” Dillon said. “He was being a bully.”
Democratic state Sen. Maryanne Jordan also filed an ethics complaint against Foreman over tweets on abortion posted by an unverified Twitter account that appeared to be linked to him.
The tweets suggested that the students discuss “killing babies” with Jordan.
“It’s one thing to disagree with policy, it’s another thing to position something like that against another lawmaker,” Jordan told the AP. “This type of behavior is beneath the Idaho Senate.”
The AP reported that the Twitter account was deleted after the complaint was filed, but that it was temporarily reinstated to post a message saying it wasn’t affiliated with the state senator.
It's cool. I took screen shots. pic.twitter.com/IQoZrDd4YC— Melissa Davlin (@davlinnews) February 20, 2018