Rep. Bob Turner brought his Senate campaign to Buffalo today, appealing to the city's significant Catholic voting bloc by evoking New York Cardinal Timothy J. Dolan and Buffalo Bishop Edward U. Kmiec in criticizing the Obama administration's health care mandates.
Turner, a Queens congressman seeking to challenge Democratic Sen. Kirsten E. Gillibrand this fall, appeared at GOP Headquarters in downtown Buffalo to express his dissatisfaction with the administration requirements that religious institutions provide birth control and some abortion services for employees.
"New Yorkers should rally behind the more than 40 religious organizations across the country who have been forced to sue the Obama administration over infringement of their First Amendment rights," Turner said. "President Obama has made a reckless and unconstitutional expansion of the federal government the primary focus of his administration and this latest threat to religious liberty is yet another example.
"Trampling over the First Amendment is a bridge too far and Mr. Obama will have to account for his actions with the millions of voters who support a fundamental American right of freedom of religion."
Turner said he supports Dolan and Kmiec in a suit against the federal government's mandate.
The congressman is facing Manhattan attorney Wendy Long and Nassau County Comptroller George Maragos in the June 26 Republican primary. The winner will face incumbent Democrat Kirsten Gillibrand in the general election.
--Robert J. McCarthy