Mainstream media outlets like NBC News and The Washington Post reported this week that after the lackluster 2022 midterm elections, the GOP leadership is considering a “rebranding” away from the term pro-life.
The narrative spun by leftist politicos is that, after Dobbs and the 2022 midterms, the GOP leadership has realized that, “We the People”, are not as anti-abortion as the GOP previously thought.
Of course, the mainstream fails to mention a very important fact: Democrats spent a whopping 450 million dollars during the midterms on highly misleading abortion-related attack ads, while the Trump/McConnell led GOP spent a mere 10 million dollars standing up for the fundamental human right to life.
The gist of the GOP meeting was confirmed to American Pro-Lifer by several sources with personal knowledge of the conversations that happened behind closed doors.
The Washington Examiner gave more details of the meeting.
During the meeting, Steven Law, a former aid to Senator Mitch McConnell who now runs a super PAC made the case for ditching the term pro-life due to polling that shows that the term pro-life carries negative connotations.
Mr. Law is not exactly what you would call an experienced pro-lifer. Law graduated from the University of California – Davis and Columbia Law School, and he served as General Counsel for the US Chamber of Commerce – which should be thought of as the RINO watering hole of the political Serengeti.
Those of us who have been in the pro-life movement for some time, have seen these types of media stories pop up before and the fact of the matter is that there is some truth to the narrative that the GOP leadership is not up for the fight on abortion.
What the media neglects to state is that most of the GOP’s leadership has always tried to run away from defending the right to life.
To illustrate this point just look at the 2007 Republican primary field, which included Rudy Giuliani, an open supporter of abortion, as well as primetime RINO’s John McCain and Mitt Romney, the pro-abortion former Virginia governor, James Gilmore, and the lawyer turned lobbyist turned actor turned politician, Fred Thompson, a man described by the NY Times as “displaying little enthusiasm for divisive battles over abortion.” On the West Coast, Arnold Shwarzenegger was serving as an openly pro-abortion Republican governor. In the White House, George Bush Jr. was hopelessly ineffective on abortion and in the House, the GOP was led by none other than Mr. DC lobbyist apparatchik himself, John Boehner.
Needless to say, it didn’t take the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade for many in the GOP leadership to try to jettison the most important human rights issue of our age from the party platform.
I recall walking the halls of congress seeking co-sponsors for the Right to Life Act in 2006 alongside the great Hon. Bob Dornan and wondering if there were even five real pro-lifers in all of Congress, House and Senate together.
The myth of the radically anti-abortion GOP leadership learning its lesson after the 2022 midterms is just a flat out lie.
The truth is that the GOP leadership reluctantly retained the pro-life label thanks to the efforts of politically connected pro-lifers who would have made the GOP pay a dear price for ditching the right to life from the GOP platform.
Phyllis Schlafley, love her or hate her, was a formidable political foe to pro-abortion Republicans, as were Judie Brown and Nellie Gray. If you’re a millennial pro-lifer, please look them up. These women and a handful of bold clerics like Pope John Paul II, Cardinal O’Connor, Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson and the influential evangelical theologian Francis Schaeffer literally put the fear of God into the GOP leadership.
The GOP leadership made a deal that worked out remarkable well for them, keep the pro-life label and engage in a pro-life skirmish now and again, and get the lesser of two evils vote from Christians who regularly attend church services, which no matter what the mainstream media says, was and continues to be a formidable voting block in America.
Seen in this light of this historical perspective, the conversation that transpired in the backrooms of Capitol Hill is still alarming to pro-lifers, but certainly not novel.
Pro-lifers should take heed that their religious leaders are much more compromised in 2023 than they were a few decades ago. The Catholic Church and the Southern Baptist Conventions seem to be at war with themselves, and after years of self-flagellation from mishandling of sexual abuse cases and very weak leadership, the godless Left has mostly succeeded in rendering the largest natural associations of conservative Americans politically inert.
On the political side, the undisputed GOP front-runner, Donald Trump seems to be reverting back to his pre-2016 positions on abortion.
Thankfully, there are some bright points on the pro-life horizon.
Marjorie Dannenfelser was quick to hold former President Trump’s feet to the fire when, after the lackluster 2022 midterms, he stated that he didn’t think there was a role for the federal government to protect the right to life of children in the womb. The head of SBA Pro-Life America shot back, calling the former president’s remarks “a morally indefensible position.” The two patched up their differences shortly thereafter with SBA agreeing with Trump’s equally indefensible position to deny children conceived in rape the right to life, but opening the door to federal late-term abortion bans.
Away from Capitol Hill, in the cultural battlegrounds across America – university campuses, the entertainment world, and within big corporate America – little has changed. Pro-lifers still face an uphill battle but continue to fight on with a mix of celebrity pro-lifers such as Live Action’s Lila Rose and mom and pop activists staffing pregnancy resource centers and protesting abortion across the land.
One interesting area that will have to be confronted by pro-life politicians sooner or later is the ongoing civil disobedience campaigns known as rescues.
The left has certainly confronted the rescue movement with a vengeance: launching military style raids and spending inordinate law enforcement resources on handing down decades long sentences to peaceful grandmothers whose crime was to momentarily interfere with the busy killing schedule at a handful of America’s hundreds of legal child-killing centers.
There are a growing number of groups of political prisoners in America. The January 6th protesters opened up a pandora’s box of political persecution, with a weaponized government going after political enemies of the leftist state including non-violent parental rights groups, people of faith, and of course pro-lifers. Although only a handful of people engaged in violence at the capitol, there have been over 1,000 prosecutions and hundreds of Americans are serving long prison sentences for non-violent crimes related to January 6th.
Pro-life grandmas and sidewalk counsellors might have been ignored by Washington DC as the Justice Department prosecuted them and put them away for years on end, but will the GOP be able to ignore the ever growing dragnet?
They do so at their own peril.
The GOP leadership, and America’s large churches too for that matter, have kept their distance from the abortion rescue movement. But as with any revolution, and that is what the left is constantly attempting to carry out, politicians are quickly coming to the point where they have to take a side or they too will see themselves behind bars.
And that is what the GOP meeting on the term pro-life was really about. Will the GOP stand up and fight for those who put themselves on the line to carry forward America’s tradition of political freedom? Or will the GOP rebrand itself out of the inconvenient moral and cultural battles of our time.
Those of us who have been around the block a few times know what the natural inclination of the GOP leadership is. But buyer beware, if the Chamber of Commerce Republicans have their way and jettison moral causes such as the right to life from their platform, the left will just as soon burn down their corporate boardrooms as they would incinerate a pregnancy resource center.
Pro-lifers may never wish to attend a meeting of the Chamber of Commerce and the Chamber may want to stay away from the March for Life, but they would do well to put up with the other, and maybe even work together once in a while, if they wish to survive and God willing defeat the slow burning leftist revolution that is undoubtedly consuming America.