By Dave Andrusko
We were as surprised as anyone when pro-life Speaker of the House John Boehner announced today that he was resigning from the House at the end of October. He has represented Ohio’s eighth congressional district with distinction since 1990.
NRL President Carol Tobias said, “Speaker John Boehner has been a dedicated ally in the fight to protect the most vulnerable members of our society,” adding
Throughout his career in the U.S. House, and most especially his tenure as speaker, he has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to the cause of life. All of us in the right-to-life movement are grateful to Speaker Boehner for his leadership in our common cause of working for the day when all members of the human family are protected by our nation’s laws.
In that vein NRL Executive Director David N. O’Steen, Ph.D., recently told the New York Times
“Mr. Boehner has always made protection of life a heartfelt priority. He has always supported and promoted pro-life legislation, he has repeatedly facilitated bringing pro-life legislation to the floor whenever feasible, he has attended and spoken at our convention and he has marched for life, the first speaker to do so. We believe he cares deeply for unborn children and is doing everything he can to seek their protection.”
It is no secret that Speaker Boehner wears his heart on his sleeve. Where I come from, that’s a big compliment.
Nowhere was that more apparent than when he talks about the sanctity of life, especially in the context of his own upbringing with eleven brothers and sisters. His commitment to saving unborn babies is not only 100% genuine, it also is part and parcel of who he is as a man and as a leader.
We never for a moment doubted Speaker Boehner’s absolute sincerity or that his goal was to advance the cause of unborn babies and their mothers in every way he could.
I was there in Pittsburgh in 2010 when Speaker Boehner spoke to the NRL convention, the annual gathering of pro-life grassroots America. He was the more than deserving recipient of the National Right to Life Legislative Leadership Award for outstanding pro-life leadership in Congress
Here’s how he began his remarks:
Well I am deeply, deeply honored to be here today with all of you. I know the program says I am here to accept and award, but really it isn’t my work we should be celebrating today. It’s your work that we should be celebrating. It is the National Right to Life Committee, and its state affiliates across America that’s made the real difference in our country. And I want to thank each and every one of you in this room for the leadership that you have demonstrated in your communities…
Coming from someone else you might assume they were just being polite. Not with Mr. Boehner. Not only is he a humble man, he was recognizing the essential, foundational truth of our Movement: it is ordinary men and women, boys and girls, the young and the old whose day in and day out contributions have kept the battle for life front and center.
Thank you Speaker Boehner for all that you have done. We will miss you.