NRL News

Part Three: The Republican National Convention—“Five Takeaways”

by | Aug 31, 2012

By Dave Andrusko

Pro-life team of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan

Each and every pro-lifer who had a chance to watch the August 28-30 Republican National Convention would come away with a different “Five Takeaways.” Let me know what you think of mine by writing to

1.This is a strongly, almost monolithically pro-life party, reflected not only in its presidential team of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan but in its platform. As NRLC President Carol Tobias wrote, “While the bulk of the pro-life language is in a section entitled, ‘We the People:  A Restoration of Constitutional Government,’ respect for innocent human life and goals for protecting the most vulnerable among us are woven throughout the platform.” And that pro-life commitment extends to, among many, many others, the United States House and Senate leadership and to GOP chairman Reince Priebus. It sounds trite, but in fact is crucially true: the contrast between the pro-life Republican Party and the pro-abortion Democratic Party is stark and unmistakable.

2.Over the course of a long, long primary season and even up until the convention itself, the party refused to be capsized by a media determined to find imaginary differences within the GOP or to inflate real differences into “deal breakers.” By Thursday night the dominate narrative was (as the headline to USA Today’s Richard Wolf “news analysis” read) “Mitt Romney leads unified GOP into battle.”  Pro-lifers are also united behind Gov. Romney who was endorsed months ago by National Right to Life. As by far the most productive and effective political action organization, the nod of approval from the NRL PAC send the unmistakable signal that Mr. Romney was most worthy of pro-lifers support.

3.Mr. Romney is pro-life. As we’ve documented in many NRL News Today stories this commitment takes the form both of support for many pro-life initiatives and in his personal life. The ticket was strengthened immeasurably by the addition of what Wisconsin Right to Life calls “Our fervently pro-life friend—representative and future vice president Paul Ryan.”  You can see the startling contrast between Mr. Romney and President Obama at

4.Mr. Romney is a far better speaker than he is given credit for. (He is also an underrated debater. He knows his stuff.) As I watched him deliver his acceptance speech, I would periodically close my eyes so that I would truly focus on the words. The criticism (which was actually limited; even opponents understand it was an outstanding speech) was that there was too much prose and not enough poetry. Take a few minute to watch him again ( “Poetry” is often mistaken for flowery words and flights of rhetorical fancy that on second thought leave you scratching your head. Poetry really means capturing the essence of everyday life, most particular the bonds that knits families together and all of us as Americans. It can touch your heart and stir your soul, often by reminding us of the ultimate American character trait: faith in the future.

For example,  “Like a lot of families in a new place with no family, we found kinship with a wide circle of friends through our church. When we were new to the community it was welcoming and as the years went by, it was a joy to help others who had just moved to town or just joined our church. We had remarkably vibrant and diverse congregants from all walks of life and many who were new to America. We prayed together, our kids played together and we always stood ready to help each other out in different ways. And that’s how it is in America. We look to our communities, our faiths, our families for our joy, our support, in good times and bad. It is both how we live our lives and why we live our lives. The strength and power and goodness of America has always been based on the strength and power and goodness of our communities, our families, our faiths.

“That is the bedrock of what makes America, America. In our best days, we can feel the vibrancy of America’s communities, large and small. It’s when we see that new business opening up downtown. It’s when we go to work in the morning and see everybody else on our block doing the same. It’s when our son or daughter calls from college to talk about which job offer they should take….and you try not to choke up when you hear that the one they like is not far from home.”

5.Mr. Romney and Rep. Ryan complement each other in ways obvious and subtle. Clearly the selection has put extra spring into Romney’s step and improved him as a communicator on the stump. There were a number of pro-lifers Mr. Romney could have chosen. But he could not have chosen better than Rep. Ryan. If you missed Ryan’s Wednesday night acceptance speech, do yourself a big favor and go to

I could, you could, list ten more impressions from a hugely successful convention. But the bottom line is that the election is November 6 and pro-lifers can be proud and pleased of the pro-life team of Romney and Ryan.

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Categories: Mitt Romney