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March Shows Trump in Step With Pro-lifers

Tony Perkins · Jan. 20, 2018

When pro-lifers spilled into the sunny streets Friday morning, the weather wasn’t the only thing lifting spirits. To the tens of thousands at the March for Life, it’s the climate of this administration that bears celebrating. A year removed from the most pro-abortion president in history, the mood up and down the National Mall was upbeat. The long shadow of the Obama administration is finally gone. And for the first time in decades, Americans can breathe a sigh of relief, knowing they have a leader who won’t just talk about life but do everything in his power to protect it.

“It’s been a delight, in a sense, seeing how faithful he’s been,” said March for Life President Jeanne Mancini. Like most conservatives, Jeanne’s been amazed at the progress the administration has made in such a short time. From zeroing out international abortion dollars to letting states defund Planned Parenthood, the president has delivered on more promises than any conservative in years — including his most important: the confirmation of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch. “He certainly doesn’t lack courage,” Jeanne told reporters. “He’s been leaning into this issue in a way that’s refreshing.”

The president cemented his place in pro-life history by addressing the March by live satellite from the White House — a first for any administration. From the Rose Garden, Trump vowed to continue what he’s already started: rebuilding a culture of life. “Under my administration, we will always defend the very first right in the Declaration of Independence, and that is the right to life.” Touching on the event’s theme, “Love Saves Lives,” the president reminded people, “The March for Life is a movement born out of love. You love your families, you love your neighbors, you love our nation — and you love every child born and unborn because you believe every life is sacred, every child is a precious gift from God.”

After declaring, “We are with you all the way,” he proved it. Adding to the crowd’s excitement, the president broke the news that his administration was adding two more policies to an already long list of accomplishments on the issue. The first reversed a devastating Obama-era regulation that stopped states from removing certain types of providers — including abortion providers — from their state Medicaid programs. Naturally, President Obama wanted to put the brakes on the wave of pro-life sentiment sweeping through the states. We congratulate President Trump for allowing states to bring this forced partnership with abortion providers to an end. While Congress hasn’t defunded Planned Parenthood yet, dozens of local legislatures have tried — only to be thwarted by the last administration’s lawlessness. That ends now.

In conjunction with HHS, Trump also put some teeth to the new division of the agency’s Office of Civil Rights by issuing a new regulation helping them safeguard conscience rights. Those new enforcement tools will guide HHS in dealing with health care violations from the beginning to end of life in 25 areas of law. No one should be forced by the government to participate in an abortion or assisted suicide. Health care insurers, plan sponsors, doctors, nurses, other professionals, and even churches who seek pro-life plans will finally have an advocate in the government that will stop or address conscience violations.

Meanwhile, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), who’s overseen one of the most pro-life years in House history, capped off a productive 12 months by speaking on a cause he’s faithfully championed since joining Congress 20 years ago. To a raucous welcome, Ryan exclaimed, “How grateful are we to have a pro-life president back in the White House?!” Putting special emphasis on the other victims of abortion — the mothers — Ryan addressed a topic that’s gotten a lot of attention since last week’s report on abortion regret. “One thing that gets lost is how compassionate the pro-life movement is,” he said. “To help women who have gone through the pain of abortion, to help single mothers, to give them resources through thousands of pregnancy centers: This is the face of the pro-life movement.”

For the thousands packed in the blocks between the Capitol and Washington Monument, it was a striking moment to see two of the most powerful men in the world carrying the torch for the unborn. And it was all the more significant because what grows the movement isn’t politics. We aren’t just winning because of good debates, Lauren DeBellis Appell points out, “or a well-crafted bill in Congress. All of those things have their place, but that’s not what’s going to transform hearts and change minds. Life is winning because technology always advances, it never retreats. Life is winning … one ultrasound at a time.”

Originally published here.

‘Pro-Choice’ Doesn’t Mean Anti-Regulation!

While the streets of Washington were warming up, so was the pro-life action in Congress! To put an exclamation point on an already successful day, House Republicans (and six Democrats) gave marchers something else to cheer about when it passed the Born Alive Abortion Survivors Act. As far as pro-lifers are concerned, the only disappointment of the day is that America has 183 members who would vote against it.

In a fierce debate over giving care to babies who live through the procedure, Rep. Kristi Noem (R-SD) asked, “What if your doctor stepped back and refused to provide care for your child? That would be unacceptable… Every life has dignity. Ultimately we must ban abortion, but until then, we must fight to protect every precious life that we can. The Born Alive bill does that.”

Democrats fired back with inane arguments for killing a living, breathing abortion survivor. In one of the greatest ironies, Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) asked, “In what other circumstance would we allow denying, delaying, and interfering with someone’s medical care?” She apparently forgot that this bill does exactly that — penalizes the denial of care for born-alive babies! Congresswoman Martha Roby (R-AL) asked her colleagues across the line to explain their logic. “My question to those who would oppose this bill is this: How is the value of life of a baby born alive after an abortion any different from the value of the life of any other?”

In the end, though, common decency prevailed, sending a bill to the Senate that no rational person should object to. As former FRCer and March for Life Action Vice President Tom McClusky reminded people, this isn’t about abortion. “You’re talking about infanticide.” And Americans, for their part, oppose it. In fact, if today’s debate proves anything, it’s how far outside the mainstream the Democratic Party is. Not only does the country favor limits on abortion but the support is only widening. Sixty-three percent now agree with a ban on abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy — up from 59 percent just a year ago. And guess what? “Pro-choicers” are partially responsible for the boost! The number of Obama’s party who support the same ban jumped to 56 percent from 49 percent this time last year. Another 61 percent want “significant restrictions on abortion.”

Andrew Walther of the Knights of Columbus who commissioned the polling points out, “This is not, strictly speaking, a partisan issue.” Yet the DC leadership of the party continues to treat it as such. “You have major blocs in every party that are looking for these kinds of restrictions. The labels mask a much greater consensus.” On an issue like the first-degree murder of a newborn, support should give way to unanimity. “In a civilized society, treating a baby born alive after an abortion with the same care that any other newborn baby would receive should not be controversial,” Melanie Israel pointed out.

At a time when more children are at risk than ever (see Centers for Medical Progress videos for proof), it’s time for both parties to come together and protect our own. Unfortunately for society’s most vulnerable, DC liberals aren’t willing to give up their militant stance. Instead of moving the Democratic Party back to the place of common sense regulations, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and company are too beholden to the wealthy hard-liners to compromise. And it continues to cost them. Voters across the country are frustrated with the direction of the Left, which can’t seem to find room in its supposed “big tent” for middle ground.

“We say we’re diverse and tolerant,” former Indiana state Democrat Dennie Oxley told Politico, “but we’re really not tolerant of certain groups.” Minnesota State Rep. Jeanne Poppe explained. “Some in the party, especially from metro areas, are not tolerant of other opinions, especially on guns and abortion. It’s OK, if you’re liberal, to be intolerant.” It may be okay, but it’s not smart. And in the next election, heartland voters may remind liberals why.

Originally published here.

Ambassador at Large Looms Large for Religious Freedom

As Vice President Mike Pence touches down in the Middle East, the U.S. Senate just gave him something else to talk about — the possibility of a new Ambassador at Large for Religious Freedom. Thursday, Republicans jumped a key hurdle in appointing Gov. Sam Brownback (R-KS) to the post, which will come as a relief to people like Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, King Abdullah of Jordan, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Together, they’ve fought to make freedom a greater priority for their countries, which have been under relentless attack from extremists.

Now that the Foreign Relations Committee has given Brownback the green light, it’s time for the full Senate to act on Gov. Brownback’s confirmation. After eight years of leading from behind, this move is yet another example of the Trump administration trying to give the world’s persecuted new hope — first, that they aren’t alone, and secondly, that help is on the way. The sooner Gov. Brownback is confirmed as ambassador, the sooner the U.S. will be able to expand its efforts to help the persecuted.

Originally published here.

This is a publication of the Family Research Council.

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