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Thomas Gallatin / August 26, 2022

Will Republicans Let Abortion Endanger Their Election Chances?

Conservatives should remember we have the moral high ground on the biggest civil rights issue of our day.

Following the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark ruling on Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization overturning Roe v. Wade, pro-life advocates celebrated and several Republican-controlled state legislatures quickly passed laws severely limiting abortion. The court victory was a long time coming and in many ways the result of persistent work by pro-life advocates to preserve the lives of the preborn. Babies in utero are not simply a clump of cells, but human beings, and as scientific knowledge advanced, this reality has proven undeniable. The issue is life itself.

But truth, even the most objective truth, is not universally accepted, and thus the issue of abortion, even what it actually is, is far from universally understood. Much of the reason why abortion is still such a controversial issue is because it has long been erroneously characterized by abortion advocates as a “women’s health” issue and politicized as such by Democrat politicians.

On a side note, it has always been amazing to see how, on the one hand, Democrats love to claim that the motivation for many of their welfare-related policies is “for the children.” Yet when it comes to the issue of abortion, the literal killing of preborn children, they suddenly lose all interest in promoting laws and policies that would protect and benefit children.

Politically speaking, the presumed dead-in-the-water congressional Democrats may have received a life-line (irony duly noted) with the Court’s ending of Roe. Democrats certainly have been loudly decrying its ending for political fodder to gin up their base, and it seems to be working based upon recent polling and the outcome of several primaries.

Democrats are leaning into the issue hard, particularly as they falsely characterize Republicans’ stance as anti-woman, absurdly comparing it to the dystopian novel and TV show “A Handmaid’s Tale.” Such claims are glaringly ironic given the fact that most of the #MeToo perpetrators have been powerful Democrat men, while it has been Republicans who have been seeking to protect women from the encroachment of men into their spaces, both in sports and in bathrooms. But when have Democrats ever been consistent?

Too often, Republicans have ceded ground on the abortion issue, effectively allowing Democrats to frame the debate. This needs to change. Of all the political issues out there, none are more morally black and white than abortion. And Republicans are on the moral high ground. Abortion — the very right to life — is the civil rights issue of our day, and this is how it needs to be framed.

Oh, the arguments have been made, and extreme examples such as rape are raised, but the data shows the vast majority of abortions are performed for reasons of convenience. How many more millions of innocent preborn babies will be murdered in the womb for the sake of personal convenience?

Regardless of the circumstances leading to the creation of a baby’s life, the issue boils down to the fact that abortion kills an innocent human being. Period.

Republicans have been too shy and too conciliatory. The Republican Party was birthed explicitly as a party opposed to slavery. Today, slavery is rightly viewed as a great moral stain on our history. Abortion is today’s arguably worse moral stain, and the GOP needs to once again rise up with righteous moral indignation over the slaughter of innocents that has been allowed to go on for far, far too long.

Progress has been made, and more is being made, but now is not a time for timidity. Recognize that the vast majority of Americans are not in favor of abortion on demand. Frame the argument this way, and do as Donald Trump did when Hillary Clinton chastised him for not supporting abortion; he hit back, “If you go with what Hillary is saying, in the ninth month, you can … rip the baby out of the womb of the mother just prior to the birth.”

In other words, Republicans need to stop being afraid of calling a spade a spade, or calling a preborn human what it is — a baby.

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