NRL News

The stakes could not be higher in 2018

by | Jun 29, 2018

By Karen Cross, NRL Political Director

Editor’s note. This speech was part of a Friday general session entitled, “Saving Lives Means Saving the House and Senate in 2018

NRL Political Director Karen Cross Photo: Lisa Andrusko

Good morning!

It is wonderful to be with you at the National RTL convention! Attending the National convention is like an annual family reunion. The theme of today’s general session is “Saving Lives means Saving the House and Senate in 2018.”

The reason I’m involved in politics at all is because we save so many lives every time we pass pro-life legislation.

In South Carolina alone, there are nearly 175,000 people alive today because they passed pro-life laws.

And just one piece of federal legislation – the Hyde Amendment, which limits federal funding of abortions – is attributed to saving two million lives.

A lot is at stake in 2018. Lives are at stake…

If pro-abortion Democrats take over leadership in the U.S. House and Senate, there will be consequences.

Like Nancy Pelosi, for instance (who would become House Majority Leader).

And pro-abortion legislation like the Woman’s Health Protection Act – we refer to it as the Abortion without Limits Until Birth Act – which is so extreme, if enacted, it would invalidate nearly all state and federal limits on abortion.

Shame on them.

We wouldn’t be able to pass protective pro-life legislation like the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act.

This bill would require that a baby born alive during an abortion must be afforded the same degree of care that would apply to any other child born alive at the same gestational age.

183 Democrats voted against protecting babies who survive abortion.

Shame on them.

And we wouldn’t be able to confirm justices to the US Supreme Court.

This year, there are 35 U.S. Senate seats up for election: 26 Democrat seats and 9 Republican seats.

Let’s look at our best pro-life opportunities to replace current pro-abortion seats in 2018.


Pro-life Governor Rick Scott is challenging pro-abortion Senator Bill Nelson.

Nelson has a solid pro-abortion voting record, even voting to allow partial-birth abortions to continue.

Please join me in saying Shame on him!


In Indiana, pro-life businessman Mike Braun is challenging Senator Joe Donnelly, who claims to be pro-life, however Donnelly has a dismal 40% pro-life voting record.

Pro-abortion Senator Donnelly consistently votes to give hundreds of millions of dollars of government funds to the nation’s largest abortion provider – Planned Parenthood.

What do you say about that?

Shame on him!


In Michigan, John James is pro-life and is challenging pro-abortion Michigan Senator Debbie Stabenow.

Most of you know EMILY’s List as the pro-abortion PAC that supports women Democrat candidates who support unlimited abortion and taxpayer funding of abortion.

Debbie Stabenow is so pro-abortion she is an EMILY’s List candidate.



In Missouri, pro-life Attorney General Josh Hawley is the lead candidate to challenge pro-abortion Senator Claire McCaskill.

Her extreme pro-abortion position is completely out of line with Missouri voters.

McCaskill is an EMILY’s List candidate and is so pro-abortion she is a cosponsor of the “Women’s Health Protection Act” more accurately called the “Abortion without Limits Until Birth Act.”

Shame on her!


Pro-life state Auditor Matt Rosendale is challenging pro-abortion Senator Jon Tester.

Senator Tester has voted pro-abortion on every occasion.

Shame on him!

North Dakota

North Dakota’s pro-life Congressman Kevin Cramer is challenging pro-abortion Senator Heidi Heitkamp, who has a solid pro-abortion voting record, even voting against legislation to protect unborn children from abortion who can feel pain.

Shame on her!


In Ohio, pro-abortion Senator Sherrod Brown has a long history of voting against pro-life legislation. Pro-life Congressman Jim Renacci is challenging Sen. Brown.

Senator Brown is so pro-abortion he even voted against the partial-birth abortion ban every chance he had.

Shame on him!


In Pennsylvania, Senator Bob Casey has a 20% pro-life voting record in the current Congress. Pro-life Congressman Lou Barletta is running against Sen. Casey.

Many of you may remember the strong pro-life position Bob Casey’s dad took while governor of Pennsylvania.

Senator Casey is not his father.

While he claims to be pro-life, his actions speak louder than his words. He consistently votes to continue government funding for Planned Parenthood.

Shame on him

West Virginia

West Virginia’s Senator Joe Manchin claims to be pro-life however his voting record in the 115th Congress is a pathetic 40%. Manchin will face pro-life Attorney General Patrick Morrisey in the general.

Senator Manchin consistently votes to allow funding to Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider that performs 900 abortions every single day.

Manchin claims “not one dime of that money goes for abortion”.

We don’t care Senator. Money is fungible. Planned Parenthood receives more than a million dollars a day. They use that money to build more buildings, hire more staff and do more advertising, then more little girls walk through their doors and she pays for it, or her boyfriend or aunt pays for it.

By voting against defunding Planned Parenthood, Senator Manchin is keeping money from actual health care providers who will offer comprehensive health care for more women, closer to home.

Shame on him!


In Wisconsin, the August 14 primary will determine pro-abortion Senator Tammy Baldwin’s pro-life opponent.

An EMILY’s List candidate, Senator Baldwin is a cosponsor of the “Abortion Without Limits Until Birth Act” and has voted against the life issue on every occasion in Congress, even voting to allow partial-birth abortions to continue and to use taxpayer funds to pay for abortion.

Shame on her!

Two Republican senate seats are currently considered vulnerable in 2018.


An August 28 primary will determine which pro-life Republican will run against pro-abortion Congresswoman Kyrsten Sinema in Arizona’s open seat.

Sinema is so pro-abortion she voted against the bill to protect babies who are born alive after abortion.

Shame on her!


Nevada’s Senate race is rated a tossup.

In 2012, pro-life Senator Dean Heller, who has a 100% pro-life voting record, defeated a pro-abortion EMILY’s List candidate, 46% to 45%.

In 2018, he’s facing a challenge by pro-abortion Congresswoman Jacky Rosen, also an EMILY’s List candidate, who supports abortion on demand throughout pregnancy.

Shame on her!


And finally, in Tennessee, the likely candidates are pro-life Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn and pro-abortion former Governor Phil Bredesen.

Bredesen is so pro-abortion, as governor he wouldn’t even sign a pro-life license plate bill into law.

Shame on him!

House of Representatives

Democrats need 24 House seats to take over leadership.

With Nancy Pelosi in control of the gavel, pro-life legislation would be blocked and children’s lives would be at stake.

So what do we have to do to save the House and Senate in 2018?

First and foremost, we need to raise enough money to frame the argument and tell the truth about candidates who hide behind their religion or mislead voters about their true positions on life.

We have to overcome the “misinformation trifecta.”

We have held a number of special elections in 2017 and 2018 leading up to the 2018 midterms.

In election after election, political pundits have claimed the special elections would be an indicator of what is to come in 2018. A bellwether, they said.

Then, in election after election, when the Republican was pro-life and opposed using tax dollars to pay for abortion, while the Democrat candidate supported unlimited abortion, and supported using taxpayer dollars to pay for abortion on demand, we continued to win.

In each of these races, the National Right to Life Victory Fund informed pro-life voters about the stark contrast between the candidates on life.

And when we won, what was the media response?


You could hear a pin drop.

Here’s CNN’s response to pro-life Karen Handel’s win over pro-abortion Jon Ossoff in Georgia’s 6th congressional district last year. {A screen shot of a very unhappy CNN panel.}

In order to win in many areas of the country, Democrat candidates must have pro-life votes. They, the media, and even EMILY’s List, are recognizing that their unlimited, abortion on demand positions are not winning issues among the majority of American voters.

We’ve known that for decades.

Misinformation from the media

So here’s what they did in Pennsylvania’s 18th congressional district special election between Republican state Rep. Rick Saccone and Democrat Conor Lamb.

Again and again, I heard national news describe Conor Lamb as “pro-life.”

The illusion that Conor Lamb was a “prolife, pro-gun” centrist Democrat prevailed. Democrat Conor Lamb won the election by less than 3 tenths of a percent, and fewer than 600 votes out of more than two hundred thousand cast.

Just to clarify: Conor Lamb is not pro-life.

He is Catholic but said he wouldn’t interfere with a woman’s right to choose; and he even opposes the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.

Interestingly, the media repeatedly admitted that Democrats would fare better in the red and swing districts if only they had more candidates like Conor Lamb.

While this is true, we need to be sure they don’t continue to deceive voters with candidates who really are not pro-life.

In West Virginia, Indiana, and Pennsylvania we have incumbent Democrat Senators who claim to be pro-life, however they have pro-abortion voting records.

Misinformation by the Candidate

The most ridiculous evidence of this took place when West Virginia Democratic Senator Joe Manchin appeared in a picture holding a Planned Parenthood sign that read, “I stand with Planned Parenthood.”

Manchin later appeared in a picture with a pro-life group holding a sign that read, “We don’t need Planned Parenthood.”

Misinformation from Campaigns

Pro-abortion groups and campaigns will attempt to define our pro-life candidates with the false notion that their positions are “dangerous” to women and would “ruin women’s lives,” which is ironic, because it is abortion that ruins many women’s lives, and most certainly abortion is dangerous to the unborn child.

And they will spend millions of dollars doing it.

Year of the pro-life woman

Many in the media are referring to 2018 as the “Year of the Woman.” Of course for them that really means “Year of the Pro-Abortion Woman.”

If you tally the numbers, more women are running for election to the U.S. Senate, for the U.S. House, or for governor than ever before. Some estimate that more than six hundred women filed to run in 2018 – which really is a record-breaking number.

Because of that influx, the Democrats have an unusually high number of pro-abortion candidates supported by EMILY’s List, NARAL Pro-Choice America, and Planned Parenthood Action, the political arm of the nation’s largest abortion provider, running this year.

EMILY’s List claims “women will flip the House of Representatives in 2018 – both our strong Democratic women candidates and women voters who are furious…”

But in fact, there are record-breaking numbers of women running for Congress in both parties, including many pro-life Republican women.

And their elections will make a difference for life!

It will be interesting to see how pro-abortion women fare in November with pro-life values voters.

Historically, National Right to Life does incredibly well in races against EMILY’s List candidates.

In 2016, in spite of an enormous financial disparity, we defeated EMILY’s List candidates in competitive races.

You see, in 2016, 49% of voters considered the issue of abortion when they voted. Of those, 31% voted for the pro-life candidate and 18% voted for the pro-abortion candidate.

The life issue netted a 13% advantage among those voters who considered abortion when they voted.

In 2018, EMILY’s List is on target to raise and spend $90 million, while Planned Parenthood is planning to spend $30 million. NARAL Pro-Choice America has pledged an unprecedented $5 million.

This means there will be a huge number of competitive pro-life vs. pro-abortion races in November.

I promise you that National Right to Life will do our best to expose their extreme views of unlimited abortion and using taxpayer funding of abortion on demand.

Together, with your help, we will battle tirelessly to expose the true positions of candidates on life.

As we continue to win these battles, we will one day win the war.

You know, we really are in a war with a real body count.

Thank you.

Categories: Politics
Tags: Politics