Pro-Life Democrats Rally Against Abortion Despite John Kerry’s Support

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jul 28, 2004   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Pro-Life Democrats Rally Against Abortion Despite John Kerry’s Support

by Steven Ertelt Editor
July 28, 2004

Boston, MA ( — They may be small in numbers at the Democratic convention, where pro-abortion John Kerry stalwarts are attending en masse, but pro-life Democrats at a rally in Boston are not backing down from their opposition to abortion.

"Pro-life Democrats have been silent too long," said Kristen Day, executive director of Democrats for Life of America, at the event. "Over the last probably 15 years, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to be pro-life and Democrat."

With 43 percent of Democrats taking a pro-life position according to a January 2004 Zogby poll, "we want respectful inclusion" in the party leadership, Day said.

Day says the pro-life position is a winning position for political candidates and notes that a majority of members of the House and Senate are pro-life. Until the Democratic Party embraces pro-life candidates, it may continue to stay in the minority in Congress, Day added.

Raymond Flynn, ambassador to Vatican and former mayor of Boston, said "there’s no room at the inn" for pro-life Democrats.

At this year’s Democratic convention, that’s proving to be true.

Despite Democratic Party chairman Terry McAuliffe’s promise that a pro-life speaker would be allowed at the convention, the only speaker to oppose abortion, Rhode Island Congressman Jim Langevin, promoted embryonic stem cell research by introducing Ron Reagan for a speech on an issue pro-life groups oppose.

Rep. Charlie Stenholm, a Texas Democrat, said that there is no lack of pro-life speakers the party could have invited.

"There’s about 40 of us in Congress," he said, referring to the number of pro-life Democratic lawmakers on Capitol Hill.

Stenholm defended his pro-life views saying, "It’s who I am and what I am, and this is part of West Texas values as I see it."

Despite the unwelcome reception by the party, Day says there is still hope for the large minority of Democrats who oppose abortion.

"We’re really trying to send a message that pro-life Democrats shouldn’t be silent anymore. There is a home in the Democratic Party for pro-lifers, we just have to speak up more," Day said.

Robert Casey Jr., son of the late Pennsylvania Gov. Robert Casey, a prominent pro-life Democrat who was denied the ability to speak at the 1992 convention, made a surprise appearance at the rally.

Nebraska Sen. Ben Nelson and State Rep. Mary Ellen Otremba of Minnesota also attended the event.

Silvia Delamar, the Democratic nominee for Georgia’s 8th District, also spoke. She says she would be, if elected, the only Democratic woman in the House of Representatives to take a pro-life stance.

About 100 pro-life Democrats attended the rally outside Faneuil Hall, where Samuel Adams and other patriots exhorted Bostonians to fight for independence.

Related web sites:
Democrats for Life –