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Battle for the U.S. Senate: 2020 Competitive Races

by | Aug 18, 2020

By Karen Cross, NRL Political Director

Editor’s note. This appeared in the August digital edition of National Right to Life News. I’m hoping that you are reading the entire issue and passing its contents along to family and friends.

Radical pro-abortion Democrats are eager to take back the U.S. Senate. They are only a few seats away! We cannot allow that to happen. 

With Charles Schumer as Senate Majority Leader, Democrats would advance an agenda of abortion on demand and taxpayer funding of abortion. And they would be in a position to determine the fates of judicial nominees, including potential nominees to the U.S. Supreme Court. 

Following is an overview of the most competitive U.S. Senate races in alphabetical order by state.

ALABAMA – Tommy Tuberville vs. Doug Jones

Tommy Tuberville (R) is pro-life. He opposes abortion on demand and supports protection for unborn children. Tommy Tuberville supports the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, legislation to protect unborn children by prohibiting abortion at 20 weeks, a point by which the unborn child is capable of experiencing great pain when being killed by dismemberment or other late abortion methods. 

Tommy Tuberville opposes taxpayer funding for abortion, and he opposes taxpayer funding of abortion providers.

By contrast, his opponent, Sen. Doug Jones (D), supports a policy of abortion on demand, which allows abortion for any reason. 

Since being sworn into office, Jones voted against the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act and the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act. With his opposition to these priority pro-life bills, Jones has taken a stance in favor of late abortions and using your tax dollars to fund abortions. That is a far cry from the moderate image he tried to cultivate during his campaign.

Tommy Tuberville has been endorsed by National Right to Life.

ALASKA – Dan Sullivan vs. Al Gross

Alaska’s primary election will be held on August 18. Pro-life Senator Dan Sullivan (R) will likely face leading candidate pro-abortion Democrat Al Gross, a physician, in the general election.

Sen. Sullivan has a 100% pro-life rating from National Right to Life and has earned National Right to Life’s endorsement. Sullivan voted in favor of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, and the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Act.

In contrast, Al Gross supports a policy of abortion on demand, which allows abortion for any reason. Gross is backed by Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider, which advocates for abortion at anytime, anywhere, under any circumstances, and paid for by taxpayers.

Dan Sullivan has been endorsed by National Right to Life.

ARIZONA – Martha McSally vs. Mark Kelly

Pro-life Senator Martha McSally (R) was appointed to the U.S. Senate following the passing of Sen. John McCain. Her 100% pro-life rating in the Senate earned her the endorsement of National Right to Life. She voted in favor of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, and the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act.

National Right to Life has endorsed Senator McSally.

McSally faces former astronaut Democrat Mark Kelly, husband of pro-abortion former Rep. Gabby Giffords. Kelly has voiced his support for the current policy of abortion on demand as imposed by Roe v. Wade. “Women have the right to choose, and I’m going to stand up to defend that right,” stated Kelly. Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro-Choice America are both supporting Kelly. “Planned Parenthood advocacy and political organizations are going all-in. We’re investing deeply to engage voters, and we’re going to help elect Mark Kelly to the U.S. Senate,” PPFA said in its announcement.

President Trump carried Arizona by four points over Hillary Clinton in 2016 but most election experts believe the state will be a key battleground in 2020.

COLORADO – Cory Gardner vs. John Hickenlooper

Pro-life Senator Cory Gardner (R) faces a challenge from former Colorado Governor and failed presidential candidate John Hickenlooper (D). 

Sen. Gardner has maintained a 100% pro-life rating during his term in the Senate. He voted in favor of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, and the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act.

By contrast, Hickenlooper has been an ally to Planned Parenthood, and called for the repeal of the pro-life Hyde Amendment. “I look at the woman’s right to control what happens to her body as being inalienable,” Hickenlooper told the Washington Examiner. (A telling inversion. Our Founding Fathers used almost identical wording to describe the right to life in the Declaration of Independence.)

Cory Gardner has been endorsed by National Right to Life.

GEORGIA – David Perdue vs. Jon Ossoff

The Peach State has two Senators up for re-election in 2020. Sen. David Perdue is running for a second term and Sen. Kelly Loeffler is running in a special election to complete the term of Sen. Johnny Isakson who retired in 2019. (See below for highlights of the special election.)

Sen. Perdue has a 100% pro-life rating from National Right to Life. Perdue, who has served since 2015, voted in favor of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, and the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Act.

Sen. Perdue faces Jon Ossoff, a pro-abortion Democrat who lost a special election in Georgia’s 6th Congressional district in 2017. Ossoff is backed by Planned Parenthood. He noted that he “will only vote to confirm judges who commit to upholding Roe v. Wade.” 

Ossoff even cited that his motivation to run for Senate was in part to fight back against pro-life efforts in Georgia and nationally.

David Perdue has been endorsed by National Right to Life.

GEORGIA – Special Election

Due to Georgia’s system, a special election will take place on November 3, 2020. All candidates, regardless of party, will be placed on the same ballot. If no candidate receives more than 50% of the vote, the top two finishers will advance to a runoff election, which will be held on January 5, 2021.The winner will finish out the remainder of Sen. Isakson’s term.

The leading Republican candidates are Sen. Kelly Loeffler and Rep. Doug Collins.

As the Senate incumbent with a 100% record, National Right to Life endorsed Sen. Loeffler. Loeffler, who took office in 2020, co-sponsored and voted for the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act and the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act.

Rep. Doug Collins also has a 100% pro-life score with National Right to Life. Doug Collins co-sponsored and voted for the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act and the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act.

The leading Democrat is pro-abortion Rev. Raphael Warnock. Planned Parenthood is supporting Rev. Warnock, calling him a “dedicated champion” for abortion.

IOWA – Joni Ernst vs. Theresa Greenfield

One of the U.S. Senate’s most prominent pro-life women is up for re-election in 2020 – Sen. Joni Ernst (R) of Iowa. Ernst has maintained a 100% pro-life rating during her term in the Senate, voting in favor of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, and the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act. 

Joni Ernst is endorsed by National Right to Life.

Her opponent, Theresa Greenfield (D), is backed by EMILY’s List, a political action committee dedicated to electing Democratic women who support abortion without limits, and by NARAL Pro-Choice America.

KANSAS – Roger Marshall vs. Barbara Bollier

Dr. Roger Marshall is pro-life. He opposes abortion on demand and supports protection for unborn children. Dr. Marshall voted for the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act as a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives.

Dr. Marshall voted against taxpayer funding for abortion, and he voted against taxpayer funding of abortion providers as a Member of the United States House of Representatives.

By contrast, Barbara Bollier supports a policy of abortion on demand, which allows abortion for any reason. Bollier voted against the Kansas Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, and she voted to allow using tax dollars to pay for abortion.

Dr. Roger Marshall is endorsed by National Right to Life.

KENTUCKY – Mitch McConnell vs. Amy McGrath

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is up for re-election in 2020. Few have done more to advance the right to life in the U.S. Senate than Sen. McConnell. 

“Senator McConnell has had an exemplary 100% pro-life voting record throughout his senate term. He has provided extraordinary pro-life leadership in the U.S. Senate and throughout his career,” said Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life, in announcing NRLC’s endorsement.

In addition to his 100% pro-life voting record, McConnell has masterfully shepherded countless judicial nominees through the Senate, leaving a legacy that will impact the country for years to come.

Sen. McConnell faces pro-abortion Democrat Amy McGrath, a well-funded former fighter pilot and failed Congressional candidate who raised $17.4 million between April and June of this year. Despite being an adept fundraiser, McGrath nearly lost the Democratic primary after a series of missteps and the late surge of progressive candidate Charles Booker.

McGrath put her abortion extremism on full display in a 2018 interview on 590 WVLK. “You don’t think there should be any limitations at all on abortion?” asked host Larry Glover. “I don’t think government should be involved in making a decision on a woman’s body,” McGrath said. “So you think a woman on the way to the hospital to give birth could decide to abort it instead?” Glover said. “I don’t think the government should be involved in a woman’s right to choose what is happening to her body,” McGrath said.

MICHIGAN – John James vs. Gary Peters

In 2016, Donald Trump shocked political experts when he carried the state of Michigan. Now with Trump back at the top of the ticket, pro-life Senate candidate John James (R) is running against pro-abortion Democrat incumbent Sen. Gary Peters.

Sen. Peters voted against bills to protect unborn children after 20 weeks, a point by which they can feel pain and  against the bill to ensure babies born alive during abortions are afforded proper medical care.

John James is endorsed by National Right to Life.

By contrast, Sen. Peters was one of the first endorsements unveiled by Planned Parenthood in the 2020 election cycle.

In May and early June, some polls showed Peters leading by as much as double digits. Now, polls have James closing in. The momentum is clearly in the pro-life direction.

MONTANA – Steve Daines vs. Steve Bullock

Sen. Steve Daines (R) will face off against former governor and failed Democrat presidential candidate Steve Bullock. Sen. Daines holds a 100% rating from National Right to Life, having voted for key pro-life legislation such as the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, and the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act.

Sen. Daines is endorsed by National Right to Life.

In 2019, Steve Bullock told CNN that he believes that life begins when an unborn baby is able to survive outside the womb. But he still does not believe those children deserve to be protected under law. “I would say that life begins at viability, but either way it’s not up to people like me to be making these decisions.”

And yet when those very decisions came to his desk as governor, Bullock did make a decision: he chose to veto. He twice vetoed a bill to protect unborn babies after 20 weeks, a point by which they can feel pain. Bullock even vetoed a bill that would have required babies born alive during an abortion to receive proper medical care.

NORTH CAROLINA – Thom Tillis vs. Cal Cunningham

In the Tar Heel State, pro-life Sen. Thom Tillis (R) is up for reelection. Tillis has earned a 100% rating from National Right to Life in his time in the Senate. 

In voting for the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act and the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act, Tillis said, “It is truly heartbreaking that there are politicians in the United States who believe that babies who survive failed abortions should not receive the proper medical attention necessary to keep them alive. Today, I voted in support of commonsense legislation to protect unborn children at 20 weeks after fertilization and to ensure that newborns have the care they need and deserve. While Democrats continue to stake out extreme positions, I will never stop fighting for the sanctity of life.” 

National Right to Life has endorsed Thom Tillis.

Tillis faces pro-abortion former state representative Cal Cunningham, (D) who is backed by NARAL Pro-Choice America. “In the Senate, I will always defend Roe v. Wade, unlike Senator Tillis who just a few months ago asked the Supreme Court to revisit and potentially overturn it,” said Cunningham. In addition to NARAL, Cunningham has the support of Planned Parenthood. 

In its press release, PPFA noted, “Defeating Senator Thom Tillis is especially urgent, given his leading role in attacks on abortion rights and Planned Parenthood funding in the Senate.”

As always, North Carolina will be a nail-biter. Defending Sen. Tillis may be the difference between a pro-life or a pro-abortion majority in the U.S. Senate.

SOUTH CAROLINA – Lindsey Graham vs. Jaime Harrison

Pro-life stalwart, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R), is facing a challenge by pro-abortion Democrat Jaime Harrison.

Sen. Graham is pro-life. He opposes abortion on demand and supports protection for unborn children. Senator Graham is the lead sponsor of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.

Sen. Graham voted against taxpayer funding for abortion, and he voted against taxpayer funding of abortion providers.

By contrast, his opponent, Jaime Harrison (D), supports a policy of abortion on demand, which allows abortion for any reason. Harrison opposed the South Carolina Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, and he supports using tax dollars to pay for abortion.

Lindsey Graham is endorsed by National Right to Life.

TENNESSEE – Bill Hagerty vs. Marquita Bradshaw

This U.S. Senate seat is open due to Lamar Alexander’s retirement. Republican Bill Hagerty, former Ambassador to Japan, and Democrat community organizer Marquita Bradshaw were nominated by their respective parties in the August 6 primary election.

Bill Hagerty is pro-life. He opposes abortion on demand and supports protection for unborn children. He supports the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.

Bill Hagerty opposes taxpayer funding for abortion, and he opposes taxpayer funding of abortion providers.

His opponent, Marquita Bradshaw, supports a policy of abortion on demand, which allows abortion for any reason, and she supports taxpayer funding of abortion.

Bill Hagerty is endorsed by National Right to Life.

TEXAS – John Cornyn vs. M.J. Heger

Senator John Cornyn is pro-life. He opposes abortion on demand and supports protection for unborn children. Sen. Cornyn voted for the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.

Sen. Cornyn voted against taxpayer funding for abortion, and he voted against taxpayer funding of abortion providers.

By contrast, his opponent, M.J. Heger, supports a policy of abortion on demand, which allows abortion for any reason. Heger is backed by the pro-abortion trifecta: EMILY’s List, NARAL Pro-Choice America, and Planned Parenthood. These pro-abortion groups advocate for abortion at anytime, anywhere, under any circumstances, and paid for by taxpayers.

National Right to Life endorsed Sen. Cornyn for re-election.

Make no mistake about it. National pro-abortion groups are spending enormous amounts of money to win the U.S. Senate majority. They know that a pro-life majority is essential to the goal of passing pro-life laws and stopping pro-abortion legislation such as the repeal of the Hyde Amendment.

For more information on where the candidates stand including downloadable comparisons, please go to www.nrlvictoryfund.org.

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