The Susan B. Anthony List is active in Ohio and Colorado, supporting Richard Mourdock . . . working for a pro-life majority in Washington in the new year. Marjorie Dannefelser, president of the SBA List, talks about what they’re up to and what she’s seeing and why she’s doing what she’s doing.
nro: Why would you ever want to be associated with Richard Mourdock after the rape catastrophe?
MARJORIE DANNENFELSER: Richard Mourdock said that life is always a gift from God, and we couldn’t agree more. This controversy came about because the media is reporting his statement as an endorsement of rape — that is either willfully ignorant or malicious. The SBA List Candidate Fund has endorsed Richard Mourdock and is proud to have done so.
nro: Why does rape keep coming up in this election?
DANNENFELSER: Because abortion advocates want to keep the subject off their abortion-at-any-time agenda, to focus on our perceived weakness so as to frighten women away from pro-life candidates. The good news is: The media may be talking about it but it’s not sticking.
nro: Democrats for Life have endorsed his opponent. Do you have a vendetta against Joe Donnelly, who must be pro-life if Dems for Life are okay with him?
DANNENFELSER: In 2010, Joe Donnelly was one of the “pro-life” Democrats led by Bart Stupak who betrayed their principles and constituents by voting for Obamacare, the largest expansion of abortion since Roe. It appears that the folks over at Democrats for Life are unaware of the growing consensus that Obamcare funds abortions and that a vote in support of that legislation was not a pro-life vote.
Those who lost their jobs over that vote — including former Representatives Bart Stupak and Kathy Dalhkemper — have publicly lamented that with the HHS mandate on abortion drugs, sterilization, and contraception, President Obama violated the compromise on abortion funding they thought they had secured through the president’s executive order.
Democrats for Life and Representative Donnelly seem to refuse to acknowledge what some of us knew long ago: that the fig leaf of an executive order was never going to do a thing to prevent taxpayer funding of abortion in Obamacare.
Since returning to Congress after the midterm elections, Joe Donnelly has doubled down and repeatedly voted against the repeal of Obamacare, the largest expansion of abortion on demand since Roe.
Melissa’s powerful story draws a stark contrast to his unbending support of abortion and the abortion industry and reveals the human face to this debate. We are honored to work with her. She has overcome the experience of literally being discarded at birth and gone on to help others as a mental-health professional and activist for unborn babies and their mothers.
nro: Do people believe the president can be that radical? And so radical as to be eroding religious liberty?
DANNENFELSER: Yes. Once Americans are faced with the truth of voting records — and the president’s own recorded voice, which demonstrates the real extent of his opposition to the born-alive legislation — they go running in the other direction.
We have done polling that shows this message truly impacts voters. A 54 percent majority of likely swing voters said that they would be less likely to support the president on learning about his record of failing to protect babies after a failed abortion. This is not just dyed-in-the-wool pro-lifers that are convinced by this message: 46 percent of independents, 43 percent of pro-choicers, and more than half of all swing-state women voters [53 percent] are less likely to vote for the president because of this very issue.
It has been buried deep by the media and the president himself, but once Americans are presented with the facts, they recognize the harsh reality.
nro: What worries you most about a second term of Barack Obama in the White House?
DANNENFELSER: With a second term comes more judicial appointments. President Obama will appoint Supreme Court justices that will make it impossible to save lives for a very long time to come.
nro: What do you wish you could communicate to every American, of every view, about abortion and “women’s issues”?
DANNENFELSER: There are people of good faith on both sides of this debate. The majority of Americans believe there is common ground to stand on when it comes to limiting abortion — commonsense restrictions. What is more disconcerting about Barack Obama is that he is unwilling to name even one situation in which he would yield on this issue. A 77 percent majority of Americans [80 percent of women] support banning sex-selective abortion.
Sixty-three percent of Americans [70 percent of women] support a ban on late-term abortion past the point at which unborn children feel pain, and 72 percent of Americans don’t want their taxpayer dollars to fund abortions. We recoil at the very idea that someone would deny equal protection and constitutional rights to babies accidentally born alive after a failed abortion.
Yet President Obama has failed to right these wrongs at every opportunity. That’s not the kind of leadership America needs.