Human Life Is Sacred: GOP 2024 Candidates Should Speak Boldly and Clearly in Its Defense
The Supreme Court’s Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision was historic — a victory that the pro-life movement had been working towards for nearly 50 years! Yet as Family Research Council and its allies emphasized, the work is not done. Continued advocacy is needed to protect the unborn and to support their mothers and fathers — especially in states where abortion is legal. Several of these states don’t even ensure that infants who survive abortion are given proper medical care.
Yet during the 2022 midterm elections, some Republican candidates seemed hesitant to speak about abortion, and the GOP gained far fewer congressional seats than expected. Now, as we enter the 2024 election season, political consultants are advising Republicans not to talk about abortion because it’s a supposed liability.
But that’s not what the numbers tell us. As FRC Action Vice President Brent Keilen talked about with FRC President Tony Perkins on “Washington Watch” recently, 11 governors on the 2022 ballot signed meaningful pro-life legislation, and all 11 of them won reelection by significant margins. These were not deep-red, Republican states — they were battleground states like Georgia, Florida, Iowa, and Ohio.
On top of that, Keilen pointed out that the only U.S. Senate seat to flip party control in November was in Pennsylvania, where the Republican candidate, Dr. Mehmet Oz, was more liberal on the life issue.
Perkins also mentioned that Democrats spent about $358 million on the topic of abortion while Republicans spent far less — roughly $37 million. This resulted in the national conversation shifting from “protecting unborn children” to “banning abortion.” Why didn’t more Republican candidates talk about the need to protect the unborn? The alternative (supported by the Democratic Party) is abortion for any reason up until the moment of birth at taxpayer expense. This is an extreme position which is opposed by 80% of Americans.
Science is clear that life begins at conception: the 23 pairs of chromosomes in the zygote are complete; the zygote has a specific genotype that is distinct from both parents; and the child’s sex, size, shape, skin color, hair color, eye color, and even to some extent temperament and intelligence are already determined. Between the time the human being begins as a single fertilized cell to the time it becomes an adult (from fusion to maturity), 45 generations of cell division occur, 41 of which occur before birth.
Being pro-life is both loving and compassionate. Mother Teresa said, “The so-called right to abortion has pitted mothers against their children and women against men. It has sown violence and discord at the heart of the most intimate human relationships. It has aggravated the derogation of the father’s role in an increasingly fatherless society. It has portrayed the greatest of gifts--a child — as a competitor, an intrusion and an inconvenience.”
The Republican Party Platform also says, “The Constitution’s guarantee that no one can ‘be deprived of life, liberty or property’ deliberately echoes the Declaration of Independence’s proclamation that ‘all’ are ‘endowed by their Creator’ with the inalienable right to life. Accordingly, we assert the sanctity of human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to children before birth.”
Thankfully, we are starting to hear more emphasis on the sanctity of human life from national GOP leadership. Republican National Committee Chair, Ronna McDaniel, told Perkins, “We have to show compassion, but we also have to push back on the Democrats. They’re the ones in the position that’s not compassionate. Could you imagine a baby on its due date, saying that [abortion is] okay when it can live a healthy life? Can you imagine knowing now what we know with science — that babies feel excruciating pain at 15 weeks and not changing our policies? … We should stand right in [the Democrats’] face and say, ‘Tell me, when do you think it’s alright to fight for the unborn? When do you think it’s time for us to stand up for that baby?’ They’ll be silent. They have no answer.”