GLENSIDE, Pa. — A week out from Pennsylvania’s Democratic primary, former Rep. Marjorie Margolies is no longer the front-runner in a race Democratic operatives doubted she could ever lose.
Less than one year ago, Margolies’ commanding lead in the polls, familiarity with voters thanks to her one term in Congress in the early 1990s, and her ties to the Clinton dynasty as Chelsea Clinton’s mother-in-law made her a seemingly untouchable foe. Yet Democratic operatives say Margolies has run an astonishingly poor campaign in the 13th District, an open seat thanks to Rep. Allyson Y. Schwartz’s gubernatorial bid in the Keystone State.
That has shifted the focus from Margolies, 71, to state Rep. Brendan Boyle, 37. As he gains traction, the other Democrats in the race have stepped up to paint him as anti-abortion because he voted for a state law that required stricter regulations and inspections of abortion clinics. But Boyle, who supports abortion rights, says his record has been twisted.
“I’ve been a supporter of Planned Parenthood,” Boyle told CQ Roll Call on May 9. “On 14 votes that I’ve cast related to women’s health, I’ve voted with Planned Parenthood on 12 of the 14. Unfortunately … when you have a record, opponents can misleadingly point to one or two votes, completely mischaracterize it and paint a picture that’s false.”