Have you noticed how much time candidates have spent talking about abortion as the presidential race starts to heat up? From Gov. Scott Walker’s defense of his uncompromising Pro-Life position to Sen. Marco Rubio’s refusal to disavow the fact that Life begins at conception to Carly Fiorina’s and Ben Carson’s outspoken criticism of Planned Parenthood, the candidates early in the race have demonstrated strong Pro-Life principles.
Many of the candidates seem sincerely to hold their Pro-Life beliefs and many have demonstrated long before the debate cameras were rolling that they are serious about protecting Life. However, we all know that their talking points are dictated in part by what voters want to hear. As the Pro-Life movement gains ground, especially among millenials, we shouldn’t be surprised to see that voters want to hear where candidates stand on abortion.
Add to the growing Pro-Life sentiment among the voting public the shocking viral videos of Planned Parenthood staff casually discussing the horrifying, ostensibly illegal, day-to-day operations of their taxpayer assisted “women’s health clinics,” and Pro-Life issues are front and center in many people’s minds when thinking about the next major election.
As Steve Deace rightly notes in his article in the Washington Times, recent economic events will most likely turn the candidates’ discussion back to fiscal matters. However, this is a premature move that undercuts the very important discussion about abortion taking place in the public square. On top of that, candidates stand to gain in the polls by being unafraid to stick with their Pro-Life position.
A prime example is the recently released data demonstrating the effect of the radio ads run by Texas Right to Life Political Action Committee in the 2014 gubernatorial election. The Pro-Life issue convinced many voters, among them women and Hispanics, to change their vote and led, in part, to Governor Abbott’s victory by a wide margin. Mr. Deace writes:
Recent pro-life polling conducted by Adam B. Schaeffer, Ph.D., director of research and co-founder of Evolving Strategies, says that just one Texas gubernatorial ad highlighting “Abortion Barbie” Wendy Davis’ support for a baby killing spree had a profound impact on the 2014 electorate. It shifted Democratic-leaning women by 10 points last year away from Ms. Davis and toward current Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, and that’s not all. Voters ages 18-34 shifted to Mr. Abbott by 8 points, and Hispanic voters shifted by about 13 net points to Mr. Abbott.
If we as a nation are morally bankrupt, trying to fill our wallets won’t get us very far. Many voters feel this strongly, and election data are demonstrating that candidates would do well to take note. Pro-Life legislators not only save Lives, but also win an increasing number of votes by maintaining strong Pro-Life principles.