To my co-laborers in the pro-life generation,
No presidential election in recent memory has presented two candidates who were more disliked, even by their own parties. Indeed, not only active party members, but also a significant majority of ordinary, grassroots Americans – especially millennials – really don’t like Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton.
The fact remains that one of these candidates will become the President-elect in less than two weeks; President Hillary or President Donald will be inaugurated come January 20th. So, does our distaste for these Worst Ever candidates mean that we leave the presidential ballot bubbles unmarked or that we vote for a third-party candidate who doesn’t stand a chance of winning?
The bottom line is this: As those who want to see abortion abolished in our lifetime, what is our moral obligation when voting for President?
It’s our privilege and responsibility as American citizens that requires us to vote. And like many decisions I’ve had to make as an adult, I’m going to have to choose between two bad options.
And I believe that choice on November 8th is simple. We have to vote for the candidate who will advance our mission of ending abortion.
However, it’s not a mere pro-life vs. pro-choice decision. For me and many others it will be an anti-abortion vs. pro-abortion decision. This is an important distinction. While being anti-abortion and pro-life often go hand and hand, that’s sadly not an option this time around.
As the Institute for Pro-Life Advancement, a project of Students for Life of America, polling revealed earlier this year the term “pro-life” is muddled. Most Americans our age believe abortion is wrong and should be illegal but don’t label themselves as pro-life. And the term means something different to everyone. Some believe pro-life is simply about opposing abortion and others think it encompasses other issues like the death penalty, foreign policy, education, etc. Others think it’s just a political term used to describe old, white guys who yell at women at abortion facilities. To me, pro-life is about working to end all abortions and work towards positive cultural changes to help women achieve their dreams while raising children.
Is Donald Trump the pro-life candidate? For my definition of “pro-life,” no he is not. I don’t think he fits that label.
However, his unprecedented, public pledges that no other “pro-life” candidate has ever made so clearly to defund Planned Parenthood if they continue to commit abortions, ensure the Hyde Amendment becomes law of the land, ban painful 20-week plus abortions, and only appoint justices who promise to overturn Roe and Doe, make him anti-abortion.
It’s a huge victory in and of itself that Donald Trump proudly states that he is anti-abortion. In every other recent presidential election, abortion has always been an issue that the Republican candidate dances around and avoids speaking about directly. Consultants and campaign staffers have always cautioned against a direct, firm, or outspoken anti-abortion message, proclaiming it to be political suicide. Trump’s clear anti-abortion promises are a victory that we can celebrate because we have made being pro-life and anti-abortion so popular that not only a majority of peers agree with us on the issue, but presidential candidates have to talk about it before they run for office. And even better, it benefits them to side with us even if they might not be as convicted as we are.
I think his public promises are the best guarantee we will get that he will fulfill them. He can’t walk back his promise to appoint pro-life Supreme Court Justices – those people who will literally decide if the laws on abortion go back to the states in our lifetime – on live TV. To break such a significant campaign promise would be political suicide for a politician. If you don’t believe me, just ask President George H. Bush about breaking his no-new taxes pledge.
Presidents have a lot of power, more than just setting the direction of the Supreme Court. Executive orders, the ability to order the Department of Justice to block enforcement of laws that are passed, and the preference to appoint Cabinet members and tens of thousands of their support staff are all reasons why Hillary Clinton and her $30 million Planned Parenthood army should be starring in your nightmares.
I’m not trying to bully or guilt-trip you in your decision on your Presidential vote this year. However, I just can’t tiptoe around when so much is at stake, when literally millions of little lives are hanging in the balance. I’m risking your offense to be true to my own conscience.
Staying home and not voting or voting for a candidate who has no legitimate way to win the Presidency is a failure to do what we must do as the pro-life and anti-abortion generation. While our mission is to transform our nation starts with culture and those most targeted by the abortion industry, we can’t forget that what happens in Washington will heavily influence the effect of our efforts, and how many babies will die and mothers will be betrayed until we are ultimately successful in making abortion an unthinkable choice.
So, I’m voting for Donald Trump not because he is pro-life, but because he’s anti-abortion. For me, that’s the best decision I can make in this election.
LifeNews Note: Written by Kristan Hawkins, the Christian, American, wife, mother, and pro-life generation member. Views expressed do not represent the views of Students for Life, as our organization is made up of a unique collection of voters from of all walks of life who have their own personal opinions.