A message from Anne Fox, President of Massachusetts Citizens for Life, in the Spring 2017 member magazine.
Profanity and obscenity entitle people who don't want unpleasant information to close their ears and eyes to you." – Kurt Vonnegut
A year ago it looked as though one of the many Republican candidates for President would easily defeat Hillary Clinton. Six months ago it looked as though Clinton would beat Donald Trump, the Republican nominee. We knew that Clinton would expand and accelerate Obama’s anti-life agenda; pack all the courts, especially the Supreme Court, with activist pro-abortion judges who would be there for a generation at least; and effectively destroy the pro-life movement.
Now we have President Trump and the shoe is on the other foot. Now we have the chance to undo Obama’s anti-life work and appoint quality judges to all federal courts.
Let’s look at what has happened so far, what we can reasonably expect to happen, and what we can hope to accomplish. Please note that I am writing this on Lincoln’s Birthday and a lot may happen before you receive your copy of the magazine.
The day of his inauguration, President Trump reinstated the Mexico City Policy, which prohibits non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that receive U.S. funds – including International Planned Parenthood – from providing or promoting abortions overseas. The policy also bans these organizations from advocating for the passage of pro-abortion laws in other countries.
President Trump strengthened the policy by directing the secretary of state to implement a plan that expands the policy across all global health assistance funding. This means that U.S. taxpayer dollars will not be supporting organizations that promote or participate in the management of coercive abortion programs. The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) is one such organization, with its long history of supporting China’s one-child population control program.
When President Trump heard from his Counselor Kellyanne Conway and Vice-President and Mrs. Pence about the March for Life and the fact that the media has not covered it well or at all, he sent Mr. and Mrs. Pence (Kellyanne was already a speaker) to speak to the Marchers and call out the media. The coverage was much more extensive this year. Protest PP demonstrations, which took place yesterday as I write this, also got better coverage than usual. It isn’t the coverage per se that is so important – it is the fact that the coverage makes people think about abortion, which is what the babies need.
President Trump has said he will “crush” the Johnson Amendment, put in place by Lyndon Johnson to keep churches and clergy from expressing their opinions. That has already started. The Johnson Amendment and its progeny have made it extremely difficult for us to inform people of candidates’ positions on life.
Besides Kellyanne Conway, who has worked closely with the National Right to Life Board for years, Mr. Trump chose Mike Pence as his VP. Pence is a movie idol to pro-lifers. He and his wife, Karen, made sure people knew this was not their first March. As a matter of fact, Karen Pence is proud to have served on the National Right to Life Board of Directors. These are the people to whom the President is listening, but they are not all. He is known to be very loyal to his friends.
All important Cabinet and advisor positions are filled by people who are pro-life. Let’s start at the top: attorney general. The new AG, Jeff Sessions has said: “I firmly believe that Roe v. Wade and its descendants represent one of the worst, colossally erroneous Supreme Court decisions of all time. It was an activist decision…it was a Court that decided to politically impose their will.” “Good law should prevail,” the Senator noted. “Our policies in this country as a nation should focus on life, should focus on decency, and focus on love for even the least of these.”
The minute (literally) the new attorney general resigned his U.S. Senate seat, Alabama Governor Robert Bentley appointed State Attorney General Luther Strange to fill it. Strange is just as pro-life as Sessions and has excoriated Roe vs. Wade as one of the worst Supreme Court cases in history.
An attorney general is extremely important because he will have to argue in court to uphold pro-life laws. Jeff Sessions is very gifted. He would have been a federal judge had he not been “Borked” by pro-abortion US senators.
Another cabinet position which is extremely important to us is Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) where we now have former US Congressman Dr. Tom Price. In order to ram through Obamacare and “make it work,” President Obama expanded the powers of the HHS Secretary tremendously. Now one of our guys has that power to restore quality health care in this country.
According to The Cut, “Trump’s New Health Secretary Could Be Disastrous for Women.” They said, “He’s staunchly anti-choice. He doesn’t believe birth control should be free. He wants to gut Planned Parenthood. Price introduced a 2015 budget reconciliation bill that would have repealed the ACA (Affordable Care Act) (O-care) and barred Planned Parenthood from receiving federal family-planning funding. In 2011, he supported
a resolution that would have completely eliminated the federally funded Title X Family Planning Program, barring Planned Parenthood from receiving Medicaid.”
Price will not just be at the helm of Republican efforts to repeal the ACA. He'll also oversee policies and budgets that affect nearly every facet of Americans' physical and mental health.
The President has found this caliber of people right across the board. No wonder pro-abortion senators, aided and abetted by the press, are telling out-and-out lies about these appointees.
Now we come to the biggie: the Supreme Court. The President worked closely with Leonard Leo of the Federalist Society in making his list of judges he was considering for the Supreme Court opening. I don’t have to tell you how brilliant and thoughtful Neil Gorsuch is. His opposition to doctor-prescribed suicide is “premised on the idea that all human beings are intrinsically valuable and the intentional taking of human life by private persons is always wrong.”
Besides his law degree, Judge Gorsuch has a doctorate in legal philosophy from Oxford where he studied with John Finnis, who is credited with bringing back the study of natural law.
It looks as though President Trump will have at least one more SCOTUS appointment, and there are many more marvelous picks on that list.
What can we reasonably expect to happen? Obamacare must be repealed and replaced. Many Republicans have good plans, including Secretary Price. These plans include applying the Hyde Amendment reasoning across the board which would defund PP and other abortion providers. We can expect judges at all levels to be ones of whom we approve. (Please see my column in the MCFL Winter 2016 Magazine which discusses Justice Scalia’s description of the different styles of judicial reasoning). It looks as though the President may be going to wrest some power from the courts which would be a plus for us.
What can we hope for? We’ll be discussing overturning Roe v Wade in great depth at the MCFL Convention on April 8th. Both the Congress and the Supreme Court have the ability to overturn this murderous decision.
What we really need is a Human Life Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. In order to amend the Constitution, two-thirds of the members of Congress must vote for the amendment, which then must be ratified by three-quarters of the states. The vote would be along party lines. Right now Republicans have 293 of the 361 votes needed. Trump won 30 of the 50 states. They might vote for ratification. Then eight more states would be needed.