The chairman of the GOP says Donald Trump will not likely be successful in his effort to change the Republican Party platform to support abortions in cases of rape or incest.
As LifeNews.com reported last week, Trump said he “absolutely” wants to change the Republican party’s current pro-life platform to promote abortions in cases of rape or incest.
“Yes I would. Absolutely, for the three exceptions, I would,” he said. Trump was then pressed further and asked if he would make an exception to protect the “health” of the mother. “I would leave it for the life of the mother, but I would absolutely have the three exceptions.”
Now, Republican chairman Reince Priebus says the pro-life platform will likely stay as is.
On Sunday, Priebus was asked on ABC’s “This Week” whether he would be open to making those changes.
“Well, the platform is up to the delegates at the convention,” Priebus said. “If that’s what Donald Trump is intending, then he needs to make sure that the people that agree with him are the people that are getting elected to the platform committee.”
Priebus continued, “I think our platform is pretty clear on those subjects. Life begins at conception, and that 14th Amendment rights apply to unborn children.”
“And I would suspect that that is what the platform is going to say after Cleveland,” he concluded.
Leading pro-life advocates have condemned Trump’s call for abortion int he GOP platform.“The suggestion that the platform should weaken its position on the pro-life issue would set back years of hard work in the pro-life movement,” said Tom McClusky, vice president of March for Life Action.
At the same time, Trump has not toned down his praise of Planned Parenthood, which he says “has done very good work for many, many — for millions of women” despite the fact that the group is reviled by pro-life advocates as “a seller of baby body parts.”
“He says ‘I’m pro-life, abortion is wrong’ and I’m not sure that he has taken it beyond that,” said Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life, which has endorsed Sen. Ted Cruz. “People who have been involved in the pro-life movement — in the politics, in the culture, for anywhere from one month to 40 plus years — are very well immersed in the language, the issues and I think they just see his lack of ability to talk about the issue as a problem.”
As LifeNews reported yesterday, Lila Rose, president and founder of the pro-life organization Live Action, told LifeNews.com she takes issue with Trump on supporting the aborting of babies not conceived lovingly.
“Rape and incest are horrific injustices, and those who commit these acts should always be punished to the full extent of the law. U.S. law forbids the use of the death penalty as a punishment for rapists, yet current law permits killing the innocent preborn children conceived in rape. Abortion should not be held up as a pathway to healing from rape or incest, as it doesn’t undo the crime; it just adds more violence to what the survivor has already endured,” Rose explained.
Rose continued: “If you are pro-life, you can’t say certain lives are less worthy or don’t deserve protection because of how they are conceived. To say children conceived in rape are somehow less human and shouldn’t be allowed to live is a grave injustice. Survivors of rape and incest and their children must be shown compassion and be supported by their communities. While some mothers choose to keep their children, adoption is the option for those who don’t.”
“Over 1000 medical professionals from around the world have publicly declared that abortion is never medically necessary to save a mother’s life. While life-saving medical treatment may result in the death of the child in a mother’s womb, there is a fundamental difference between providing that legitimate treatment and elective abortion,” she concluded.
Trump’s platform comment is the latest in a long line of comments from Trump upsetting pro-life voters — including multiple remarks praising the Planned Parenthood abortion business, saying abortion laws should not be changed and saying women should be punished for having abortions and flip-flopping hours later.
Below is the full text of the current pro-life platform in the Republican Party:
THE SANCTITY AND DIGNITY OF HUMAN LIFE
Faithful to the “self-evident” truths enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, we assert the sanctity of human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children. We oppose using public revenues to promote or perform abortion or fund organizations which perform or advocate it and will not fund or subsidize health care which includes abortion coverage. We support the appointment of judges who respect traditional family values and the sanctity of innocent human life. We oppose the non-consensual withholding or withdrawal of care or treatment, including food and water, from people with disabilities, including newborns, as well as the elderly and infirm, just as we oppose active and passive euthanasia and assisted suicide.
Republican leadership has led the effort to prohibit the barbaric practice of partial birth abortion, permitted States to extend health care coverage to children before birth. We urge Congress to strengthen the Born Alive Infant Protection Act by exacting appropriate civil and criminal penalties to health care providers who fail to provide treatment and care to an infant who survives and abortion, including early induction delivery where the death of the infant is intended. We call for legislation to ban sex-selective abortions – gender discrimination in its most lethal form – and to protect from abortion unborn children who are capable of feeling pain; and we applaud U.S. House Republicans for leading the effort to protect the lives of pain-capable unborn children in the District of Columbia. We call for a revision of federal law 42 U.S.C. 289.92 to bar the use of body parts from aborted fetuses for research. We support and applaud adult stem cell research to develop lifesaving therapies, and we oppose the killing of embryos for their stem cells. We oppose federal funding of embryonic stem cell research.
We also salute the many states that have passed laws for informed consent, mandatory waiting periods prior to an abortion, and health protective clinic regulation. We seek to protect young girls from exploitation through a parental consent requirement; and we affirm our moral obligation to assist, rather than penalize, women challenged by an unplanned pregnancy. We salute those who provide them with counseling and adoption alternatives and empower them to choose live, and we take comfort in the tremendous increase in adoptions that has followed Republican legislative initiatives.
James Bopp, Co-chairman of the Subcommittee on Restoring Constitutional Government for the Republican National Committee, emailed LifeNews the background of the pro-life position:
Since 1980, the Republican Party Platform has endorsed the adoption of “a Human Life Amendment” to protect unborn life and to reverse Roe v. Wade. Carl Anderson, now head of the Knights of Columbus of the U.S., and I drafted this plank, and it has remained the same and in the platform since then. In addition, I was Co-Chairman of the Subcommittee on Restoring Constitutional Government of the Platform Committee which readopted this platform plank this year.
In 1980, there were dozens of different versions of a Human Life Amendment then pending in Congress. The approaches included a state’s rights version, one reversing the right to abortion, one endorsing restoring personhood, one permitting abortion only to save the life of the mother and some allowing abortion in instances of rape and incest.
The Republican Party plank endorsing a Human Life Amendment does not take a position on which version of a Human Life Amendment should eventually be adopted. We leave that decision to Congress and the people of the United States at that time. Thus, we do not take a position on which exceptions should be included in a Human Life Amendment.
On the other hand, the Democratic National Committee has officially rejected an effort by pro-life Democrats to get the party to include them in its platform that calls for keeping unlimited abortions legal and paid for at taxpayer expense.