A Countries Club for Life
In a sharp contrast to the administration of Barack Obama and Joe Biden, President Donald Trump is leading an unprecedented effort to challenge the United Nations to “protect the unborn and defend the family as the foundational unit of society.” Little by little, this administration has been able to mop up the mess that Obama made of America’s priorities on the international stage. But retaking the pro-life ground the 44th president abandoned in his eight-year infomercial for abortion extremism hasn’t been easy. Fortunately, Donald Trump has a cabinet of leaders who don’t know the meaning of the word quit.
It’s not every day that Secretary Alex Azar makes a trip to the U.N. General Assembly. So Monday, he made it count. As part of a two-month effort to bring some common sense back into the international conversation, he and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tag-teamed on a quiet push to get the world on board with Donald Trump’s pro-life agenda. Since mid-summer, the duo has been circulating a letter that would rebuild some of the ground lost to this global march toward “reproductive rights.”
“…[W]e respectfully request that your government join the United States in ensuring that every sovereign state has the ability to determine the best way to protect the unborn and defend the family as the foundational unity of society vital to children thriving and leading healthy lives,” the two secretaries ask their global neighbors. “We remain gravely concerned that aggressive efforts to reinterpret international instruments to create a new international right to abortion and to promote international policies that weaken the family have advanced through some United Nations fora.”
They call on the signers to encourage other countries to “join this growing coalition to push back against harmful efforts to interpret long-standing international instruments as requiring anti-family and pro-abortion policies and to promote proactive positions that will protect families and strengthen the health of all people.”
During Monday’s U.N. session, while other heads of state focused on saving the environment, the Trump administration, in addition to advancing international religious freedom, took the opportunity to remind the world who they’re saving it for. Together with 20 other countries (representing 1.3 billion people), everyone from Brazil to Iraq agreed with Azar that their nations were all united on a “positive, constructive goal: focusing the international discourse around healthcare on better health and on the preservation of human life… That is the goal of my work in the American health care system under President Trump, and that is the goal President Trump believes in working toward on the world stage.”
Calling out the groups who hide their agendas under labels like “women’s health” or “reproductive rights,” the countries make it quite clear: “We do not support references to ambiguous terms and expressions, such as sexual and reproductive health and rights in U.N. documents, because they can undermine the critical role of the family and promote practices, like abortion, in circumstances that do not enjoy international consensus and which can be misinterpreted by U.N. agencies… There is no international right to an abortion and these terms should not be used to promote pro-abortion policies and measures.”
Naturally, the world’s rabid activists — the ones who call America’s pro-life foreign policy “torture” and “extremist hate” — are furious. Shannon Kowalski, part of the International Women’s Health Coalition, lashed out.
“The United States is isolated,” she claimed, completely disregarding the collection of countries on the letter. “Their position is extreme.” Well, if protecting life is “extreme,” (and the polls would beg to differ) then aren’t we all glad we have an administration that doesn’t care about what’s popular? To President Trump, this isn’t about being part of some international clique. It’s about doing what’s right. And since Day 1, this White House has tried to do exactly that when it comes to advancing the most basic of human rights — life.
For an up-close look at the U.N. meeting — and President Trump’s historic speech on religious liberty — don’t miss my interview from New York on Monday’s “Washington Watch.”
Originally published here.
Biden Spells Extremism L-G-B-T
They may only be four percent of our country — but the LGBT community is getting 100 percent of the Left’s attention. Over the weekend, 10 of the Democrats vying for President Trump’s job tried to persuade Americans that the most pressing issue facing our country is the pursuit of taxpayer-funded gender surgery. If pandering were an Olympic sport, Joe Biden could have medaled. Instead, he settled — like they all did — for new records in extremism.
GLAAD CEO Sarah Ellis would have you believe that “LGBTQ issues have been… left out of the 2020 presidential primary conversation.” That’s interesting, since most Americans probably feel like it’s all the Democrats ever talk about. From Biden calling the Equality Act his “number one priority” to Julian Castro saying even transgender “women” need abortion, sexual politics have dominated this political cycle in a way most people can’t believe. Surely there are more pressing issues facing our nation than putting a Drag Queen Story Hour in every library — but you wouldn’t know it by the talking points of the Democratic field.
Most of Saturday’s event was spent fighting for the most radical social space in U.S. history — led by “moderate” Joe Biden, whose best argument for president is that he’ll turn our prisons into a gender-neutral free-for-all. “In prison,” he argued, “the determination should be that your sexual identity is defined by what you say it is [and] not what the prison says it is.” That, ironically, was tame compared to his other kooky suggestions. The former vice president’s platform for America also includes outlawing talk therapy, forcing religious hospitals to perform gender mutilations, and putting taxpayers on the hook for transgender plastic surgery.
The soundbites were almost impossible to believe. “We should outlaw, nationally, conversion therapy,” Biden argued. “There should be a law against it, period.” Followed by: “Obamacare… does cover [gender reassignment] surgery…Trump by executive order struck all of that out of the Affordable Care Act. I would reinstate it all. Every LGBT person… should be able to have full health care without limits.” Then, as if that weren’t enough, the former second-in-command went on to say that the government should punish hospitals who don’t want to perform transgender surgery. “It is simply against the law when I’m president.”
Of course, this grab bag of LGBT radicalism is all designed for one thing: winning the nomination. There’s just one problem — the same that one Hillary Clinton ran into three years ago: You can’t win the White House with the same extremism that charms the core of today’s Democratic party. For now, these promises may open up the Left’s wallet, but they never pay off come Election Day.
And it’s no wonder. Even sympathetic voters would agree that there are far bigger issues facing America than gender-neutral pronouns. With all of the tension on the world stage, with immigration reaching its boiling point, and people looking to Washington to keep the economic boom going, the front-runner of the Democratic party says putting men in girls’ bathrooms is the most important thing of all? And yet, the DNC is so tone deaf that its candidates aren’t participating in one — but two — LGBT forums this fall.
Interestingly, if you ask Americans what their biggest concerns are heading into next year’s election, the LGBT agenda doesn’t even make the list! In April, when Fox News ran the numbers, immigration (21 percent) and the economy (10 percent) were the only two that even had double-digit mentions. Gallup’s team got the same response in the lead-up to the midterms. When they asked voters, Biden’s number-one priority wasn’t even on the map. Even climate change, which is usually dead last on Americans’ minds, had more fans.
Brad Polumbo, one of the people who suffered through this three-hour spectacle, probably felt like a lot of viewers when he wrote, “I expected the debate would be full of left-wing virtue signaling and pandering. But I never quite expected this many Democratic candidates to say openly crazy things — and be proud of it.”
Welcome to 2020.
Originally published here.
This is a publication of the Family Research Council. Mr. Perkins is president of FRC.