In their debut speeches at the Democratic National Convention, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris had the chance to explain to any general election voters paying attention for the first time precisely what their abortion agenda would mean for Americans – and they completely chickened out. Not one main stage speaker in the entire four days even uttered the “A-word.”
The conspicuous silence on abortion from convention speakers across the board is a big departure from recent years. In 2016, the heads of three major pro-abortion groups addressed the Democrats’ convention. This year Planned Parenthood’s former president Cecile Richards made only a brief cameo in old video footage. Gone, too, was NARAL’s Ilyse Hogue boasting about her abortion, described by one liberal news site as the most radical speech at the 2016 DNC.
Instead, as Biden and Harris made a bid to win over people of faith, viewers heard repeatedly about the importance of character and decency – as though that holds the answers to specific policy questions that voters want and deserve to know.
During the primary debates, Harris criticized Biden for being slow to come out in favor of repealing the Hyde Amendment, longstanding policy prohibiting taxpayer funding of abortion that has saved more than 2.4 million lives. Today Biden fully embraces forcing taxpayers to pay for abortions and Catholic nuns to provide abortion-inducing drugs in their health plans, and he promises to nominate only pro-abortion judges to the Supreme Court.
Harris’s record is even worse than Hillary Clinton’s. The senator from Planned Parenthood has consistently voted in favor of abortion on demand through birth and even infanticide. As a prosecutor in California, Harris did Planned Parenthood’s bidding – abusing the power of her office to shake down a brave citizen journalist, David Daleiden, who exposed the abortion giant’s trafficking of baby body parts.
One hopes the Democrats might reconsider their extremism, but no – their sudden reticence simply means they now have to sell their platform to the entire country instead of their increasingly narrow base. And that must terrify them. Marist polling conducted earlier this year found that 44 percent of Democrats and 62 percent of Independents want to vote for a candidate who supports common-ground limits on abortion.
This leaves the abortion lobby and their media cheerleaders to do the heavy lifting. The morning of Harris’ convention debut, Planned Parenthood launched a five-figure ad campaign to support Biden-Harris, on top of the $45 million they have pledged to elect pro-abortion Democrats. Awkwardly, the ad sounds like the speech they wished she would give, rather than the one she did.
In stark contrast, President Trump and Republicans at every level are leaning into the life issue as a strength. The Republican National Convention lineup has prominently featured pro-life speakers like Abby Johnson – a former Planned Parenthood director turned pro-life advocate – and Nick Sandmann, a Catholic high school student who became the target of a viral smear campaign while sporting a “MAGA” hat on a trip to the March for Life.
With President Trump and Vice President Pence at the helm, life is winning in America. From day one, they have worked to stop taxpayer funding of abortion domestically and abroad. The latest State Department report on the president’s expanded Mexico City policy shows that, out of more than 1,300 prime awardees, only eight refused to comply, including usual suspects like Planned Parenthood and Marie Stopes International. Backed by pro-life Senate leaders like Mitch McConnell, President Trump has delivered on a key promise by filling over 200 judicial vacancies – more than one quarter of the federal bench – and would take swift action in the likely event of additional vacancies on the Supreme Court.
Emboldened by their leadership, state lawmakers are taking inspired steps of their own to protect unborn children and mothers, such as Nebraska’s new ban on dismemberment abortions. If Biden and Harris were elected, they have promised to try to make states obtain “pre-clearance” from a hostile Justice Department to enact even the most modest, popular pro-life laws.
Since Biden and Harris are opting to hide their views in these crucial final weeks, it’s up to us to expose them as the most pro-abortion presidential ticket in history. Susan B. Anthony List’s ground team is ramping up efforts to reach more than 4.6 million voters through Election Day – including Democrats and Independents – to educate them about the life or death stakes of the coming election. We know from data and experience that the life issue has the power to move votes in close races and deliver victory for President Trump and pro-life Senate leaders. In millions of one-on-one conversations, at the doorstep of homes across the nation, voters will learn the truth that the Democrats were too afraid to mention at their convention.
Marjorie Dannenfelser is president of the national pro-life group Susan B. Anthony List. She serves as national co-chair of the Pro-Life Voices for Trump coalition and is the author of the forthcoming book "Life is Winning."