As only one-third of Americans have given any thought to the elections coming on November 4, citizens who stand for the rights of defenseless pre-born lives must ask ourselves: in what direction will today’s candidates lead our nation?
Right before their summer vacation, the U.S. Senate considered two staunchly pro-abortion bills: S. 1696, which would wipe out hundreds of common-sense safety measures in over the half the United States; and S. 2578, designed to overrule the Supreme Court’s recent pro-liberty decision Burwell v. Hobby Lobby.
The busy rush before break allows only a few bills to be prioritized, so it’s telling the Senate Judiciary Committee made time for a hearing on S. 1696—and majority leader Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) called for a vote of the full Senate on S. 2578.
While neither bill will likely proceed further in the current Congress, key legislative actions send a signal to voters: These are the first bills a pro-abortion Congress will reach for upon taking power.
Policy expert Peter Wehner, who served in the Reagan Administration, has seen this coming for months: “Prepare for an assault by Democrats on a range of cultural and quasi-cultural issues, including contraception, gay marriage, abortion [and] religious liberties.”
One media-savvy businesswoman isn’t taking the challenge lying down. Longtime CEO of Hewlett-Packard, Carly Fiorina kicks back at the mainstream media in explaining why she is launching the Unlocking Potential Project—a political action committee (PAC) to connect with women on a wide range of issues.
“Everywhere I go I meet strong, intelligent women who are tired of being taken for granted and are sick of the current political environment belittling them,” she says. “From career women to dedicated public servants to stay-at-home moms, they are thirsty for a genuine debate about real issues impacting their lives.”
Fiorina, a former U.S. Senate candidate, explains the so-called “War on Women” in a recent video interview with Genevieve Wood of The Daily Signal:
The Hill recently reported on women’s response to the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, a law proposed to protect pre-born children capable of feeling pain in the womb.
“Several national polls have shown that women voters back the GOP’s 20-week abortion ban, including a 2013Washington Post-ABC News survey that pegged their level of support at 60 percent,” The Hill notes.
In the spirit of “all Americans working together to reduce the number of abortions” as Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) phrases it, another pro-life group has centered its election efforts on promoting this proposed law. It passed the U.S. House yet has been stalled in the Senate since November.
Women Speak Out PAC, affiliated with the nonprofit Susan B. Anthony List, has brought together local grassroots activists in three battleground states – Arkansas, Louisiana, and North Carolina – to bring attention to the records of pro-abortion Senators currently holding office.
The Hill predicts pro-life election efforts will be far outspent by their pro-choice counterparts. Yet casting an inviting, positive vision for the future – “building a Senate majority that will finally pass pro-life laws,” to quote Women Speak Out – has the potential to win over voters fed up with Congress’ inaction on key issues.
“Think about how the language (and spirit) of the pro-life movement shifted,” says Peter Wehner of the Ethics and Public Policy Center. “From accusing people of being ‘baby killers’ to asking Americans to join a movement committed to enlarging the circle of protection to the most vulnerable members of the human community, in which every unborn child is protected in law and welcomed in life.”
He continues, “Science, in the form of sonograms, has been a friend of the pro-life movement. It’s no accident, then, that Americans have become more pro-life in their views over the last 15 years.”
Presenting a winsome pro-life message remains a constant focus for many, notably The Heritage Foundation whose 2014 Index of Culture and Opportunity tracks key social indicators like fertility and the abortion rate – enlightening stats to inform effective policy solutions moving forward.
“Many conservatives relish the fight and welcome putting abortion at the center of the midterm elections,” reported the New York Times recently. “The problem, they argue, is not that conservatives talk too much about social issues, but that they say too little, and do it in the wrong way. They are urging greater compassion for women with unplanned pregnancies…”
Honing a persuasive message on why pro-life policies matter—vitally important to grow the movement—does not make political clashes go away.
When President Barack Obama claimed at a recent fundraiser, “We’re going to have Supreme Court appointments [in the next two years],” it set off a frenzy of speculation around the nation’s highest court.
According to the National Law Journal, “President Obama made the statement to bolster his pitch that ‘I need a Democratic Senate’ to be elected in November, to ‘get things done’ during the remainder of his tenure as president.”
The U.S. Senate votes to confirm all Supreme Court justices. Because the court has largely set abortion policy in America, any change in the nine Supreme Court justices has a great bearing on future cases surrounding the right to life.
What are we to make of all this? As a leader of the National Day of Prayer recently discussed, the lines on life are clearly drawn. “Candidates have aligned with opposing sides of the spectrum, leaving no middle ground.”
He continues, “Based on the arguments, life is described as either (1) sacred and meant to be preserved, no matter the circumstances, or (2) a decision—not a right.”
While one side has two pro-abortion laws waiting in the wings, the pro-life coalition in Congress has ramped up efforts to pass laws protecting more women and children—notably the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act and revisions to the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act.
“Personnel is policy,” President Ronald Reagan often said. Injecting Congress with fresh pro-life blood, while removing “personnel” who refuse to stand for vulnerable pre-born lives, suddenly changes what is possible to accomplish.
These monumental issues call us to a place of prayer and action. Citizens who stand for life should be highly engaged in this election, even if most Americans aren’t paying attention.
The first step is registering to vote, which Bound4LIFE has made easy with an online Voter Registration tool. State deadlines to register are fast approaching.
In addition, a variety of resources exist to help citizens navigate the voting process. Leading pro-life groups National Right to Life, FRC Action and Heritage Action (among others) offer detailed scorecards that examine the votes cast by current Members of Congress.
Be sure to connect with the Family Policy Council in your state, as critical issues affecting life are on state ballots across America.
“Look for able men from all the people,” states the command to Moses in Exodus 18:21. “Men who fear God, who are trustworthy and hate a bribe, and place such men over the people…” Because we are blessed to live in a democratic republic, this command rings true as we decide our representatives in government—many of whom are courageous women like Rep. Martha Blackburn (R-TN) and Rep. Jamie Beutler (R-WA).
However involved with elections and campaigns, be faithful to pray for those in authority over us. Intercede for candidates talking to citizens daily on important issues, that the value and sanctity of each life would be clear in their conscience.
Pray for elected officials who will truly serve the people of their state and district—leaders who will look beyond the power structures of men and rely on steadfast convictions.