Pro-Abortion Republican Group Pressures New Chairman Priebus

Politics   Steven Ertelt   Jan 18, 2011   |   1:41PM    Washington, DC

Although most Republicans are pro-life, a political pressure group calling itself the Republican Majority for Choice is urging newly-elected republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus to include them as the party moves ahead.

RMC is asking Priebus to “remain true to the long standing GOP big-tent philosophy” claiming the “polarization of politics in our country and our own party has hindered progress on many fronts.”

The pro-abortion group, in a statement to LifeNews.com, said it was “disheartened” to hear Priebus is strongly pro-life and his comment during the candidates’ debate — he said people who are pro-abortion may not be Republicans — “left many pro-choice Republicans to believe they will not be welcome in the GOP under his leadership.”

“Priebus has used the term ‘pro-abortion’ repeatedly,” RMC complained. “However, pro-choice Republicans are not pro-abortion but believe that limited government extends not just to our pocketbooks, but also to our personal lives. We urge Mr. Priebus to call for civility in the debate of often difficult issues, to initiate an open dialogue with Republicans of differing opinions and focus on our mutual goals to expand the Republican Party to the benefit of our country.”

The group called for not using a litmus test when it comes to supporting candidates in the 2012 election cycle but to use a “big tent” philosophy.

On the other side, the Republican National Committee for Life, applauded Priebus’ election and said pro-life issues are critical for voters so it makes sense to have a Republican Party chairman who is pro-life.

“Chairman Priebus pledges to advance the right to Life in his new position of leadership. His election as a pro-life advocate has strong implications for the upcoming presidential election, as the GOP candidate will face the most pro-abortion president in America’s history,” Dianne Edmondson, RNC for Life director, said. “About 25% of voters in the November 2010 election declared that abortion was an important issue to them, a fact that Republican candidates for the GOP Presidential nomination should note.”

Before last week’s election for chairman, Priebus told the Susan B. Anthony List in an interview that he is fully pro-life on abortion.

“I support our Republican platform which I think is rock solid on the issue of abortion. I believe life begins absolutely at the time of conception so every question after that then you believe the Declaration of Independence, the 14th Amendment, the Equal Protection Clause protects that independent human life,” he explained. “If we start there then every single question after that is really easy.  That’s where I start when I think of the issue of abortion.”

The interview transcript follows:

What is your position, how was your position shaped and what experience do you have? 

 I believe we all have to live mission driven lives.  Certainly we all try to please God.  I’m a 100% Psalm 139 pro-life republican.  I support our Republican platform which I think is rock solid on the issue of abortion.  I believe Life beings absolutely at the time of  conception so every question after that then you believe the Declaration of Independence, the 14th Amendment, the Equal Protection Clause protects that independent human life.  If we start there then every single question after that is really easy.  That’s where I start when I think of the issue of abortion. 

 My Christian faith is the foundation of my view on the issue of abortion.  My opinion and view of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution shapes my opinion on the issue of abortion.  I was involved in a Care Net crisis pregnancy center in Kenosha, WI.  I helped them get implemented in a town called Racine, WI all in the SE area of Wisconsin which I think is a great place and a safe harbor for women facing difficult situations where pregnancy tests, ultrasounds, food and diapers and an opportunity to share the love of Christ with people who are in real trouble and making some tough decisions.

 As Chair what will you do differently than current and past administrations on the issues of Life.  Will you highlight the issue in political advertisements and the institution of the RNC?

 Certainly.  It is a core principle of mine and it is woven in my heart and I believe that as a person of faith I have an obligation on that basis let alone being in a position of some authority in the party.  I think I’ve demonstrated that as State Chair in Wisconsin if you look at our resolutions and our platform we are very clear on the position of Life.  Personally I believe if I was elected Chair of the RNC that would be something I would have an even bigger obligation to uphold the position I have on abortion.  I think it would be a huge disappointment to God if I didn’t… with bigger responsibility comes bigger obligation.

 Have you found that in your position now that there are concrete ways to involve grassroots pro-lifers in campaigns and resources that could be put behind that type of activity?

 I think there are ways we can be helpful to pro-life groups. … I think that social issues are the fabric of our society and for us to not be involved with those issues causes us to turn our back on what I think is the foundation of America and I would try to do that as Chair of the RNC.

 Have you ever given to a pro-choice organization directly or bundled checks through either or whose organizations?

 Absolutely not.  Never have.  I oppose using federal funds to assist and of those groups.  I oppose the provision allowing insurance companies and pool to use tax dollars to go towards elective abortions and I also would oppose would oppose federal tax dollars being used for those as well … and I’ve never given to candidates that are pro-choice either.