Like it or Not – Abortion is an Issue in the 2014 Elections


By Karen Cross, National Right to Life Political Director

Editor’s note. This appeared on page one of the August edition of National Right to Life News. You can read the issue in its entirety at

VotefuturereWe like it – they don’t. They – our opponents and many of their media supporters – would rather talk about a “war on women.”

That’s why, as sure as April showers, every federal election cycle we are told that the abortion issue “doesn’t matter.” The electorate is preoccupied with (fill in the blank).

Does it remind you of the adage that those who forget history are doomed to repeat it? Abortion, once again, is being written off as inconsequential. In fact, it will very much matter in the 2014 off-year elections.

Remember back in early 2014 when the contest for an open Florida seat between pro-life Republican David Jolly and pro-abortion Democrat Alex Sink was advertised as a “bellwether” election, a foreshadowing of what could happen this November?

While many political pundits argued that the abortion issue would play a diminished role in 2014, the stark differences on life issues between Jolly and Sink were highlighted on the campaign trail. And, their contrasting positions on Obamacare – in a district carried by Obama in 2008 and 2012 – were at the very center of the campaign.

As is so often the case, we defeated Sink, a candidate endorsed by the radically pro-abortion, loaded-with-money EMILY’s List. Despite Sink’s far greater name-recognition, Jolly won with 48.5% to Sink’s 46.7%. As is National Right to Life’s style, we worked quietly to educate, energize, and illuminate the vast differences between Mr. Jolly and Ms. Sink on life issues.

But everything we do is a partnership. That is where you, working with National Right to Life, play such an instrumental role.

National Right to Life created the National Right to Life Political Action Committee in 1979, and it is the most effective single-issue pro-life political action committee in the country. We have been involved in every federal election since Ronald Reagan’s victory over Jimmy Carter in 1980, and we have a proven record of success.

In 2012, a new independent expenditure political committee, the National Right to Life Victory Fund, was created to expand and enhance our political impact. The combined power and experience of National Right to Life’s political committees, and its network of dedicated volunteers, help make the difference in close elections, and very often provide the margin of victory for pro-life candidates. Consider the track record.

In 2012, 80% of the 290 federal candidates endorsed by National Right to Life won their elections.

Of those 290 candidates, we focused on 111 of the most competitive federal races. Despite being vastly outspent by pro-abortion groups, 62% of the 111 candidates supported by National Right to Life won.

Over the last four election cycles (2006-2012), EMILY’s List raised and spent more than $178 million – a 12-1 pro-abortion advantage in funding.

Despite that, in those four election cycles, National Right to Life-supported candidates won 48 of 74 head-to-head races against EMILY’s List candidates – 65%!

Allow me to close on a more personal note.

Often, you’ll see the scripture from Deuteronomy 30 on our PAC literature: “I have set before you life and death…choose life then, that you and your descendants may live.”

I’m from Morgantown, West Virginia. I am a direct descendant of Colonel Zackquill Morgan, Morgantown’s founder, who was my great-great-great-great-great-great-grandfather. In order for me, my children, and my grandson to exist, the Colonel, his children, and his children’s children had to choose life.

In West Virginia, we know that our greatest resource is not our mountains, not our coal, but our children.

Long ago, pro-lifers warned that once we devalue the lives of our own unborn children, the slippery slope will lead us to devalue those in other facets of life – those who are sick, or those who are vulnerable at the end of their lives. Sadly, our country has rapidly moved into this culture of death.

It is difficult to exaggerate how imperative it is that we work to nominate and elect pro-life candidates, who can win in November, in order to protect the most vulnerable members of the human family – unborn children and medically disabled or dependent persons, whose lives are threatened by abortion or euthanasia.

The most important reason pro-life candidates benefit is because the American people are pro-life – you are pro-life. Thank you!

Choose life then, that you and your descendants may live.

Look for more election updates in future National Right to Life News and National Right to Life News Today.