To the editors:
In response to the letter by Saul Mendelson, veteran member of IVI- IPO, about the gubernatorial endorsement session [July 27], it's important to acknowledge a couple of details that Saul omitted, two examples that illustrate why the largest gathering of IVI-IPO members in years voted by a two-thirds majority to endorse Neil Hartigan's candidacy for Governor of Illinois.
First, Saul stated that the two candidates' positions on abortion were so close that they were not an issue in the discussion. Not true: many members were keenly interested in both candidates' positions on the involvement of parents in a minor's right to choose an abortion, the very early endorsement session coming as it did on the heels of the Supreme Court's decisions on the Minnesota and Ohio parental notification laws. Although both candidates stated that they thought parental notification was a good idea, Mr. Hartigan made it very clear that he thought that parental consent was not, whereas Mr. Edgar thought parents ought to be able to control the body of a 17-year-old daughter by vetoing her right to choose an abortion. Perhaps some may find this distinction too fine to make, but I don't think many young women do, nor did most of the IVI-IPO membership present.
Second, Saul oversimplified the crucial difference between Mr. Hartigan and his opponent regarding extension of the temporary state income tax surcharge, by saying that Edgar is for it and Hartigan against it. Mr. Hartigan stated clearly at the endorsement session that automatic permanent entrenchment of an experimental policy before any of the results of the experiment were in is simply not good business practice. Hartigan said that he wanted to see some results, to hold the policy accountable, before he made a decision. The members of IVI-IPO believe firmly in the importance of social spending and of an equitable tax system, as does Mr. Hartigan. The vote showed that they understood the details of Hartigan's position on taxes, and agreed with him that we should behave as if we were spending our own money--because, after all, we are.
Diane E. Suter