The Unlikely Hero of the Pro-Life Movement
Lest any man boast, today’s hero of the Pro-life movement has been Donald J. Trump, a thrice married playboy whose own life cannot clear any sincere definition of moral behavior.
Yet my colleague Josh Frey, seeing cynicism in Trump’s remarks against abortion in last week’s State of the Union address, insists Trump is hardly a hero.
According to Frey, Trump dangles pro-life rhetoric before voters, but cleverly does nothing about abortion, thereby keeping the issue alive for future use. So it goes campaign after campaign: Planned Parenthood continues in its savagery while Republicans like Trump loot the pro-life vote on the false promise that abortion will end.
Now, this certainly was the case with GOP leaders of high moral stature in the past.
From 2000 - 2006, the so called “pro-life” Republican party did little to stop abortion, while it controlled both houses of Congress with a Republican as President. Instead, Republican lawmakers spent all their political capital dragging the US into wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, while paying lip service to pro-life causes to get re-elected.
On the surface, Trump has been business as usual. When he ascended to power in 2016, the only issue the GOP and Trump could pass was Ryan-onomics tax reform. The ACA repeal folded, and so too have Trump’s promises to restrict immigration. Abortion hasn’t been touched.
Opinions differ over who is to blame for these failures and other legislative failures (including abortion). But if we assess the failure of GOP lawmakers to pass legislation on any social issue since the Bush years, who is the common denominator? Trump, or a skittish GOP?
On the other hand, Trump’s actions speak for themselves, no matter who he is and what he did before.
Trump has denied billions in Title X funding to “facilities that perform or refer for abortion.” His administration signed the Mexico City Policy prohibiting funds for abortions internationally, and even moved to take $200 Million in grant funding away from Planned Parenthood.
In a shift toward Federalism and state-control (another issue GOP leaders have always pretended to care about), the President repealed the Obama-era medicaid guidelines for how States must use federal dollars in “woman’s health fields.” On top of that, the President has been ceaseless in his drive to appoint pro-life judges to the federal bench (unlike the sincerely pro-life Ronald Reagan, who gave us Justices Sandra Day O’Connor and Anthony Kennedy, authors of the very pro-abortion Casey v. Planned Parenthood decision).
Therefore, I offer an alternative view of the SOTU speech. The President went after abortion because of the escalating wickedness in New York and Virginia, who have radicalized their own positions on abortion out of fear that the President might continue to be zealous for life, and swift to take action on its behalf.
So make no mistake. Supporting Donald Trump is the best pro-life option available in the political landscape today, and he has delivered more than anyone else in the GOP. Motives matter less than Frey thinks.