Life Advocacy Briefing

October 29, 2012

Troubling Trends / The Better Plan / Into the Fray with an Appeal for America
Empty Promise / Death Sentence? / Rallying for Freedom / Appeal from America’s Pastor
Questions Abortion Advocates Never Have to Answer

Troubling Trends

WE HAVE OBSERVED IN THIS CAMPAIGN SEASON two disturbing trends which must be taken into account by pro-life candidates and their advisors.

First, we are seeing a tactic on the part of the abortion lobby’s political arms and, unfortunately, on the part of the once-great Democratic Party to use abortion distortions to distract voters’ attention from the economic issues which are uppermost on most citizens’ minds and at the same time to distract moderate-to-conservative candidates from their own communication strategies. As long as the more conservative candidate is defending against smears on abortion and contraception policy, the more liberal opponent will not have to defend his or her own record on taxes, spending, deficits and debt.

Second, we are seeing honorable pro-life candidates taking the bait, going on defense and, trusting the mythical good will of the voters, not even thinking through the best way to frame their defense.

Missouri Congressman and GOP Senate nominee Todd Akin comes to mind, with his awkwardly expressed explanation of why he does not support discrimination against unborn children on the basis of the circumstances of their conception.

And now Indiana State Treasurer and GOP Senate nominee Richard Mourdock trips on the same, largely manufactured issue. So well meaning and, regrettably, naïve as a political expression.

It has to do with the professional campaign consultants’ view that a pro-life candidate should try to avoid the issue, “admitting” to being pro-life but moving away from it as quickly as possible. These paid advisers would respond that the two campaigns we have cited here are examples of why not to dwell on the topic. But the reality is, the majority of Americans are now with us; this is not the “third rail of politics” it has been called in the past. And it is a legitimate issue for public debate. The problem is that in counseling avoidance, the consultants leave their candidates unprepared for what will inevitably arise in their contests.

Candidates owe it to their supporters to be prepared; consultants owe it to their clients to prepare them.


The Better Plan

PRO-LIFE CANDIDATES DO NOT HAVE TO WAIT TO BE HIT either by their opponents or the media and then fight from a cornered posture.

Pro-life candidates, in races where the abortion lobby backs the opponent, should use the opponent’s extremism against him or her. (Abortion lobby political operations take an absolute approach, not investing money and ground troops into a candidate who is not 100% on board their extremist agenda.)

The abortion backer will never, we should note, define himself on the issues attendant to abortion law; the “pro-choice” candidate’s tactic is to apply a “choice” label to himself while attacking the pro-life candidate as “extreme. When the pro-life candidate simply adopts the “pro-life” label and moves on to the next subject – as our candidates are routinely advised to do – he not only leaves open to voter interpretation what the “pro-life” label means, he also allows the abortion advocate to hide behind his appealing “pro-choice” label without having to explain its meaning.

The key attack by the abortion lobby is that a pro-life candidate is “extreme,” opposing “a woman’s right to choose” (choose what?!) without “reasonable” exceptions. We are seeing this attack leveled this year even against candidates who have tried to protect themselves by advocating loopholes, which does not work, especially against a political movement for whom unabashed lying is routine.

The reason the “extremist” attack often succeeds in peeling voters away from a candidate they might otherwise support is that voters are by nature uncomfortable with the idea of being represented by an “extremist” or really by anyone who might embarrass them.

So we ask, why should pro-life candidates not turn the tables on the opponent? Why should our candidate have to struggle against the “extremist” label when the opponent actually resists adopting mainstream, commonsense policies that happen to cut back – and hopefully will sooner than later break the back of – the abortion industry?

“Who is extreme?” is the question at the heart of the abortion debate. It is our candidate who should be asking that question and framing the issue, if not before being hit, then as an immediate response, listing three or four of the abortion law reforms the pro-life candidate supports and the opponent must surely – if backed by the abortion lobby – oppose.

Chances are the pro-life candidate has never heard his or her opponent articulate a detailed position beyond “choice, choice, choice!” But the opponent’s position can be reliably inferred from his or her backing by the abortion lobby, which sends detailed questionnaires to candidates at the beginning of the campaign season. To win their invested support, a candidate must give the “right” answers to an array of abortion policy questions, such as, for example, Do you support or oppose protecting the right of young women to access the full range of reproductive health services? The candidate who says “support” on a question like that has committed to vote against parental notification or consent, reforms which are backed by an overwhelming share of voters. They should be exposed in their extremism, and it is up to our candidate to do the exposing!

Bottom line: Our candidates have no reason to hide or minimize their positions for Life, and they have a responsibility to tell the voters the truth about their opponents’ actual extremism.

At the close of Life Advocacy Briefing today, we are reprinting a blog entry from The Gospel Coalition’s Internet site. We find it a helpful illustration of how “the abortion issue” can be framed to help voters answer the perennial question, “Who is extreme on abortion?” We commend it to you.


Into the Fray with an Appeal for America

THE REV. BILLY GRAHAM PLACED ADS in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today and various “battleground-state” newspapers last week asking Americans to join him in prayer for the country and outlining “Biblical” issues at state in the pending election. Though many in the media took the ads as a near-endorsement of Presidential contender Mitt Romney (R), the ads do not cite an office, and their appeal could certainly be seen as a guide for voting in all offices.

(Some in the Obama campaign apparently took the ads as a whack at the President. Former Reagan domestic policy adviser and Presidential candidate Gary Bauer wrote in his Oct. 25 End of Day Report memo: “I watched in utter disbelief as an Obama surrogate [whom Mr. Bauer does not name] suggested on CNN that Rev. Graham was senile and had been manipulated by his ‘ultraconservative son, the Rev. Franklin Graham.’ So to a liberal,” commented Mr. Bauer, “the only way Billy Graham could possibly oppose Barack Obama is if he had lost his mental faculties. But he was just getting started,” Mr. Bauer writes. “The Obama surrogate went on to say that conservative men and women of faith are ‘bi-polar’ for supporting Mitt Romney, because he’s a Mormon. So, now the rest of us are crazy, too!”)

Placement of the ads was a departure for the Rev. Graham, who has long been called “pastor to the Presidents” and has not before issued pointed statements in advance of an election. Family Research Council president Tony Perkins, in his Oct. 18 Washington Update, notes the ads were “the first time he truly ventured into the public square … although Rev. Graham was outspoken in his support for the North Carolina marriage amendment this spring” in the state where he lives.

“This time, his involvement is a significant statement,” writes Mr. Perkins, “that he views this election as a critical turning point for our nation – morally and politically. We applaud his boldness,” declares Mr. Perkins, “and pray that Americans everywhere are inspired to vote their conscience[s].”

We have published the texts of the ads near the end of this Life Advocacy Briefing, reprinting them from a fact-checking Internet website (


Empty Promise

 ‘YOU CAN KEEP YOUR DOCTOR,’ Pres. Obama promised while pushing his radical takeover of America’s medical care system. But it seems if ObamaCare survives into further implementation, that promise might turn out to be, um, rash.

“A study conducted by the Physicians Foundation,” reports Becky Yeh for, “shows that physicians today are working less, seeing fewer patients and reducing access to services. If that trend continues,” warns the study as paraphrased by Ms. Yeh, “nearly 45,000 full-time doctors will leave the medical field, greatly limiting patient access to care.

“‘There [are] more people coming who are going to have free access to these doctors because of the federal healthcare reform law,’” notes Twila Brase, president of the Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom (CCHF), quoted by Ms. Yeh. “‘And there are more people who are becoming part of Medicare, and they also have somewhat free access to all these doctors,’ [Ms.] Brase explains” in the OneNewsNow story. “‘So … we’re just looking at a time where doctors are exiting the doors as more and more people are entering them.’

“The report shows that 50% of the doctors who remain will reduce the number of patients they see, work part-time and switch,” writes Ms. Yeh, “to ‘concierge medicine.’ …

“‘[The President’s promise] can’t be kept,’” said Ms. Brase in the OneNewsNow story, “‘just because of what’s happening under the law, which is making it more difficult for doctors to even do their jobs, use their brains and take care of patients like patients should be taken care of.’”

Ms. Yeh concludes her story by quoting CCHF as calling the President’s promise “a ‘ruse’ to make people more comfortable with ObamaCare.”


Death Sentence?

NEW YORK’s ORGAN DONOR NETWORK is defendant in a lawsuit filed by healthcare workers claiming, reports Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins in his Sept. 28 Washington Update, “that they were pressured by the [state agency] to prematurely declare patients brain-dead so that their organs could be harvested. Their lawsuit,” notes Mr. Perkins, “names four different instances of unethical organ harvesting at four different hospitals. …

“All four cases included elements of pressuring next-of-kin into providing consent before the patients were dead,” reports Mr. Perkins. “One of the plaintiffs, Patrick McMahon, a nurse practitioner who had the role of organ transplant coordinator, may have been fired for resisting the practice of prematurely calling a patient dead,” notes Mr. Perkins, who further reports, “According to [Mr.] McMahon, all patients showed signs of life when they were declared dead.”


Rallying for Freedom

AMERICANS TURNED OUT BY THE THOUSANDS Saturday, Oct. 20, in 145 cities, to rally against the Obama birth control mandate. The noon rallies were called as expressions of the Stand Up for Religious Freedom movement and organized principally by Pro-Life Action League.

Organizers indicated, reports Kirsten Andersen for, “even small-town rallies boast[ed] participation in the hundreds.”

“Particularly large was the crowd in Pres. Obama’s adopted hometown of Chicago,” writes Ms. Andersen. Chicago’s ABC-TV outlet, reports Ms. Andersen, “reported that thousands came out for the protest … carrying signs that read ‘Vote for Life & Liberty’ and ‘Stop Obama’s HHS Mandate.’ …

“At one point,” notes Ms. Andersen, Chicago emcee Eric Scheidler “pointed to a group of two dozen abortion supporters protesting the rally who were chanting, ‘Not the Church, not the state, women must decide their fate.’

“‘Not the State?’ [Mr.] Scheidler fired back, calling their chant ‘ironic,’” writes Ms. Anderson. He argued “that the fight against the HHS mandate is all about preventing the state from infringing on the rights of individuals to act according to their consciences and their faith.”

In our own view, without the fawning fealty of the mainstream news media, the hackneyed nonsense of the abortion claque would have suffered overwhelming rejection by the American people years ago. These fanatics do not even listen to themselves, let alone think through their slogans and chants.


Appeal from America’s Pastor

Texts of two full-page ads placed by the Rev. Billy Graham in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today and in newspapers in “battleground” states during mid-October

            Ad 1: The legacy we leave behind for our children, grandchildren and this great nation is crucial. As I approach my 94th birthday, I realize this election could be my last. I believe it is vitally important that we cast our ballots for candidates who base their decisions on Biblical principles and support the nation of Israel. I urge you to vote for those who protect the sanctity of life and support the Biblical definition of marriage between a man and a woman. Vote for Biblical values this November 6, and pray with me that America will remain one nation under God.

            Ad 2: On Nov. 6, the day before my 94th birthday, our nation will hold one of the most critical elections in my lifetime. We are at a crossroads, and there are profound moral issues at stake. I strongly urge you to vote for candidates who support the Biblical definition of marriage between a man and a woman, protect the sanctity of life and defend our religious freedoms. The Bible speaks clearly on these crucial issues. Please join me in praying for America, that we will turn our hearts back to God.


Questions Abortion Advocates Never Have to Answer

Posted Oct. 24, 2012, by Trevin Wax at

Debate moderators and reporters love to ask pro-life candidates hard questions about abortion. Curiously, they don’t do the same for pro-choice candidates.

Here are ten questions you never hear a pro-choice candidate asked by the media:

  1. You say you support a woman’s right to make her own reproductive choices in regard to abortion and contraception. Are there any restrictions you would approve of?
  2. In 2010, The Economist featured a cover story on “the war on girls” and the growth of “gendercide” in the world – abortion based solely on the sex of the baby. Does this phenomenon pose a problem for you, or do you believe in the absolute right of a woman to terminate a pregnancy because the unborn fetus is female?
  3. In many states, a teenager can have an abortion without her parents’ consent or knowledge but cannot get an aspirin from the school nurse without parental authorization. Do you support any restrictions or parental notification regarding abortion access for minors?
  4. If you do not believe that human life begins at conception, when do you believe it begins? At what stage of development should an unborn child have human rights?
  5. Currently, when genetic testing reveals an unborn child has Down Syndrome, most women choose to abort. How do you answer the charge that this phenomenon resembles the “eugenics” movement a century ago – the slow but deliberate “weeding out” of those our society would deem “unfit” to live?
  6. Do you believe an employer should be forced to violate his or her religious conscience by providing access to abortifacient drugs and contraception to employees?
  7. Alveda King, niece of Martin Luther King, Jr., has said that “abortion is the white supremacist’s best friend,” pointing to the fact that Blacks and Latinos represent 25% of our population but account for 59% of all abortions. How do you respond to the charge that the majority of abortion clinics are found in inner-city areas with large numbers of minorities?
  8. You describe abortion as a “tragic choice.” If abortion is not morally objectionable, then why is it tragic? Does this mean there is something about abortion that is different than other standard surgical procedures?
  9. Do you believe abortion should be legal once the unborn fetus is viable – able to survive outside the womb?
  10. If a pregnant woman and her unborn child are murdered, do you believe the criminal should face two counts of murder and serve a harsher sentence?