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Sturbaum should have recused himself
from Planned Parenthood vote

Bloomington Herald-Times, July 10, 2008

To the Editor:

I attended the City Council meeting last month where the councilors voted 8-1 to give a taxpayer subsidy to the local branch of America's #1 abortion provider for the tenth consecutive year.

It is unfortunate that the City Council decided to put a political endorsement for Planned Parenthood above the requests of social service agencies that actually need the money, especially since Planned Parenthood and all of its affiliates combined for over a billion dollars in revenue in its most recent fiscal year and that the national branch saw a profit of $37.7 million, according to PP's most recent fiscal report.

As a taxpayer in City Council district 1, I was very disappointed that Chris Sturbaum did not recuse himself from the vote, as he has done the last four years. Sturbaum's wife is employed by Planned Parenthood.

Sturbaum had no legal obligation to recuse himself because the grant does not benefit him or his wife financially, but he nonetheless took the ethical high ground from 2004-2007 by refusing to vote on a grant request from his wife's employer. That he failed to do so this year is certainly a step backward for full disclosure and ethical government.

Scott Tibbs, Bloomington