Pro-Life Democrats to Democratic Leadership: You Cannot Win When you Alienate 21 Million People in your Base
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MEDIA CONTACT: Kristen Day
November 5, 2014
Democratic Loss Highlights Need for Pro-Life Leadership in Democratic Party
WASHINGTON, DC – Democrats For Life of America is urging the Democratic National Committee, once again, to relax its pro-abortion position and open its doors to welcome and support pro-life Democrats. In addition to election results, Democrats For Life of America points to polls that consistently show that Democratic Party insiders are out of touch with the rank-and-file Democratic voter across America.
“The National Democrat message to support abortion destroys Democratic candidates in pro-life states and districts by pushing pro-life democrats out of the party,” said Kristen Day, Executive Director of Democrats for Life. “A large majority of Democrats support reasonable restrictions on abortion. We are alienating a whole new generation of pro-life Democrats.”
After 1972, when the Democratic Party began making abortion its issue, the pro-life voter began leaving the Democratic Party. Democrats today are leaving the Party because of the singular focus on promoting abortion. According to a recent Gallup Poll, twenty-four percent of pro-life voters “will only vote for a candidate that shares their views.”
“In pro-life states and districts, Democrats, and particularly pro-life women, have a hard time pulling the lever for a candidate who is associated with a Party that not only supports abortion but actively campaigns against providing any reasonable restrictions on a ‘medical procedure’ that takes a life,” said Day. “Pro-life Democrats believe that life exists in the womb. Until the Democratic leadership accepts and respects that point of view, the Party will not heal and not win.”
The pro-life vote can provide enough of a swing in certain districts and states to turn blue districts red:
- Wendy Davis, whose filibuster over support for late-term abortions propelled her to stardom in National Democrat circles, lost the Texas gubernatorial race by a huge margin – even losing the women’s vote by 9 percent. A pro-life Democrat, Ray Madrigal, with no name recognition and no money earned 1 out of 5 votes in the Democratic primary simply because of his pro-life position.
- Nick Rahall, a strong pro-life Democrat, lost in a “guilt by association” race. West Virginia Democrats led and passed a 20-week ban on abortion with a veto-proof majority. The Democratic Governor, Earl Ray Tomblin, vetoed the bill after the legislature adjourned, providing Republicans with the ultimate campaign fodder that “you cannot trust pro-life Democrats in West Virginia.”
- Senator Mark Udall of Colorado ran a desperate race attacking his opponent on abortion and access to contraception. His focus was so singular that one reporter suggested that the campaign should have taken place in a gynecologist’s office, and locals started referring to him as Mark Uterus.
- Senator Mark Pryor, whose father first won the seat, did not carry on the pro-life tradition of the elder Pryor and lost in the pro-life state of Arkansas.
- Senator Mary Landrieu began her political career as pro-life but is no longer a reliable pro-life vote. She is headed toward a run-off in the pro-life State of Louisiana.
- Emily Cain ran in Maine’s 2nd Congressional District and made abortion the foundation of her campaign. She lost in a Democratic-leaning district that was in Democratic hands since 1995.
- Congressman Mike Michaud changed his position when he decided to run for Governor. Like Cain, he highlighted a pro-choice position and lost.
Since 1980, a strong correlation has existed between the loss of pro-life Democrats and the loss of the majority status of the Democratic Party. (See Chart.) The number of pro-choice Democrats has stayed roughly the same; the party’s losses have been in pro-life members, who have been claimed by the Republicans.
“We are once again hopeful the national Party elites will reassess their pro-abortion stance after the disastrous results of Tuesday night,” said Day. “They are costing us elections and abandoning our founding values of protecting and advocating for those who need a helping hand. At the top of that list should be helping protect the rights of the unborn.”