A new group of Catholic pro-life leaders has come together to support President Donald Trump and they are encouraging Catholics nationwide to support the president, saying he has crafted an excellent record on pro-life and religious liberty issues.
The leaders are not only endorsing Trump but putting together a new campaign coalition, Catholics for Trump, meant to encourage Catholics nationwide to support re-electing the president this November. The new coalition was set to begin operations next week with a kickoff rally in Milwaukee, Wisconsin but that event has been cancelled due to the coronavirus.
Still, members of the leadership coalition like Father Frank Pavone, told the Washington Examiner they are pushing ahead with the coalition because they want to make it clear President Trump is worthy of support. Pavone told the conservative news outlet that much has changed since 2016, when pro-life voters had questions about whether Trump was worthy of their support and sufficiently pro-life, but Pavone says those questions have turned into excitement.
“They weren’t quite sure what they were going to get,” Pavone said. “What they were more sure about is what they would not be getting by rejecting Hillary. Now, however, the question mark has changed into an exclamation point.”
For Pavone, who is expected to help lead Catholics for Trump, that exclamation point is Trump’s expressive support for the anti-abortion movement, manifested most recently in his speech at the 2020 March for Life — the first such presidential in-person appearance at the anti-abortion rally. Other exclamation points include Trump’s Supreme Court appointments and his cabinet member picks, which include a number of practicing Catholics, White House Council Pat Cipollone and Attorney General William Barr among them.
Appointments such as Barr — as well as the possibility of a conservative majority on the Supreme Court — are part of what should drive Catholics to Trump, Pavone said, adding that these are the ways Trump has proven that he is friendly to “the Catholic vision of things.”
Brian Burch, president of CatholicVote.org, an organization supporting Trump, but officially unaffiliated with the campaign coalition, extended that endorsement.
“This is the most Catholic administration we’ve had in American history, both at a policy level and at a personnel level,” he told the Washington Examiner, citing Trump’s support for the “sanctity of life, the family as the foundational social unit, and the necessity of religious liberty.”
Pro-life leaders have praised the Trump administration repeatedly for working to protect unborn babies from abortion.
“President Trump has gone further to serve unborn children and their mothers than any president before him. His bold leadership has truly saved countless lives,” said SBA List President Marjorie Dannenfelser, who served as chair of President Trump’s Pro-life Coalition after securing four pro-life commitments from the nominee during the 2016 campaign. “From stopping taxpayer funding of abortion and of experimentation involving aborted baby body parts, to protecting conscience rights, to calling out extremist Democrats who support abortion on demand through birth and even infanticide, to his two outstanding Supreme Court justices and transformation of the federal courts, President Trump has beyond delivered on his promises to the pro-life voters who propelled him to victory in 2016.”
She told LifeNews: “The stakes of this election could not be higher as Democratic contenders line up to pander to the radical abortion lobby and declare war on even the most popular, modest pro-life policies, like the Hyde Amendment. This cycle SBA List will spend $41 million expanding to priority states, working closely with local allies on the most ambitious pro-life legislative agenda yet to aggressively challenge, erode, and finally, overturn Roe v. Wade. Our team will be working hard through Election Day to educate millions of voters, expose the extremism of Trump’s opponents, elect pro-life leaders to Congress and in the states, and win a second term for the most pro-life president in history.”
In one of his first acts as president, Trump reinstated and expanded the Mexico City Policy, which prohibits taxpayer funding to groups that promote or provide abortions overseas. The change defunded Planned Parenthood’s international arm of about $100 million in U.S. tax dollars.
Trump has repeatedly called out the Democratic Party’s extreme position on abortion. During his state of the union address this year, Trump slammed the governors of New York and Virginia for promoting abortion up to birth and infanticide. He also called for Congress to pass a ban on late-term abortions on babies who are capable of feeling pain.
Trump and his administration have made a number of changes to protect those who morally object to abortions, expanding conscience protections for medical workers who believe it is wrong to kill an unborn baby and increasing religious exemptions for Obamacare.
His administration also intervened to stop the United Nations from supporting abortion in a resolution about sexual violence. In 2018, under his leadership, the State Department removed references to the so-called “right” to abort an unborn baby from a global human rights report as well.
The administration also finalized a new Title X rule that requires health care entities to completely separate abortion from their taxpayer-funded services. Planned Parenthood, which already has said it will not comply, could lose about $60 million annually through the policy change. However, the abortion group is suing to block the cuts.
Trump has appointed dozens of conservative judges to federal courts as well, including two to the U.S. Supreme Court.