Sam Brownback Opposes CEDAW On Abortion, Highlights Pro-Life Law Study

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Mar 8, 2007   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Sam Brownback Opposes CEDAW On Abortion, Highlights Pro-Life Law Study Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
March 8
, 2007

Washington, DC ( — In an interview with Thursday afternoon, Republican presidential candidate Sam Brownback said he hopes the Senate will vote against ratifying the CEDAW treaty. Although the UN document attempts to enhance the rights of women, Brownback said it would be used to promote abortion.

The United Nations approved the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) to help promote the rights and concerns of women.

President Jimmy Carter signed the treaty in 1980 but the Senate never ratified it.

Abortion advocates have pressed Sen. Joe Biden, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, to have the panel vote on the treaty sometime this month. But Brownback says the Senate should resist passing it.

"There are serious questions about the impact it could have on U.S. laws, particularly pro-life laws," he told "I believe we must work aggressively to prevent its ratification."

Brownback pointed to the use of the document in other nations such as Ireland and South American countries to pressure them to scrap their pro-life laws prohibiting abortions.

The Kansas senator said he would vote to oppose its ratification and will urge his Senate colleagues and members of the committee to vote against it as well. He also urged pro-life advocates to contact their senators to urge them to vote against it.

Brownback pointed out that the treaty needs a two-thirds vote in the Senate, meaning 34 pro-life senators could band together to block the vote. He believes that’s an obtainable goal.

"We should be able to do it and hit it off before much steam gets going," he said in the interview.

Meanwhile, Brownback also applauded a study released last month by Dr. Michael New, a University of Alabama professor, showing laws such as parental notification or consent reduced the abortion rate on teenage girls by more than 50 percent.

"Our pro-life efforts across the years and across the country are having an impact on society," Brownback told

He explained how the study showed that while abortions declined 29 percent from 1985 to 1999, the abortion rate among minors fell almost 50 percent in the same period because of the laws.

"Every one of these abortions [involves] a person as we know," Brownback said. "These people wouldn’t be here if not for the pro-life advocacy of people across the country."