Idaho Senate leadership apologizes after GOP lawmaker's outburst

Leadership apologizes after lawmaker's outburst
Posted at 3:14 PM, Feb 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-20 18:18:42-05

An Idaho lawmaker who yelled "abortion is murder" at a group of students said Tuesday his response was appropriate and has no plans to apologize.

Republican state Sen. Dan Foreman told The Associated Press on Tuesday that his "response was dead on."

He was recorded Monday shouting at university students who were pushing for birth control legislation at the Statehouse.

Senate President Pro Tem Brent Hill said he was unhappy with Foreman's outburst and told him the behavior was inappropriate.

"I apologize for what happened there, because it's a reflection upon the Senate as a whole," Hill said. "It's a reflection on the whole legislature.'

Foreman also denies any ties to an unverified Twitter account purporting to belong to him that posted the students should discuss "killing babies" with a Democratic lawmaker.

That lawmaker then filed an ethics complaint against Foreman.

The Senate president said rules prevent him from discussing any possible ethics investigations against lawmakers.

"Obviously we don't want just random accusations made against people that could affect their political careers or even their effectiveness in what they're trying to do," Hill said. "Now, if there's probable cause, then everything is made public."

The Senate took up the topic of abortion Tuesday. 

A bill requiring doctors to inform women seeking medical abortions that drug-induced abortions may be halted halfway through was debated and ultimately passed.

"The topic of abortion is emotionally charged on both sides," Foreman said. "So I think it's important to point out that this bill is not taking sides. Its not about abortion, the way I read it. It's about information flow and education."

The Associated Press contributed to this story.