Which candidates are pro-life?
RNC for Life REPORT
A Publication of the Republican National Coalition for Life Jan/Feb 1997 - No. 14
Respect For Life A Plus For
Republican Candidates

1996 election results once again confirm the fact that the 10-12 percent of voters who consider abortion "most important" cast their votes for Republican candidates by a 2-1 or 3-2 margin. Many in the media continue to allow their pro-abortion bias to misrepresent the facts, but some are beginning to print the truth that the Republican Party's historic commitment to restoring legal protection to unborn babies has great appeal to a crucial segment of the American electorate. In addition, election day polling clearly shows that among women voters for whom abortion was one of two "most important issues," Republican candidates were preferred by a wide margin.

Pollsters and Pundits - Reflections on the 1996 Election

Syndicated Columnist Mark Shields:"On Election Day the Los Angeles Times performed a useful public service by interviewing some 300 actual voters as they exited from their polling places across the country. Most Washington journalists might be shocked to discover that the most emphatically, unequivocally pro-choice sub-group in the electorate has been unmarried males without children and under the age of 35. "So what about the 8.3 million U.S. voters on Nov. 5 who declared that abortion was 'most important' in their presidential decision? Prepare yourself for a surprise: They chose Bob Dole over Bill Clinton by 60 percent to 34 percent. That qualifies as a mini-landslide. On Nov. 5, abortion was quite relevant to 8.3 million American voters, and Bob Dole carried them over Bill Clinton by nearly 2.5 million votes" (Washington Post, 11/19/96)

Wirthlin Post-Election Poll of November 5, 1996: Of the women voters who considered abortion one of the two top issues, 50 % voted for Bob Dole (Clinton 39 %), 49 % voted for Republicans (Democrats 37%) in the Senate races, and 47% voted for Republicans (Democrats 41 %) in the House contests where the union attacks on Republicans with demagogic Medicare ads had some effect. (National Right to Life News, 11/14/96)

Columnist and TV Commentator Cokie Roberts: "Contrary to media perceptions, only one in five women say the candidate they vote for has to agree with them on abortion, a USA Today/CNN/Gallup poll last month shows. Of those slightly more are opposed to abortion, a factor that would seem to favor Dole.

"Well, it's been there [the gender gap] in all kinds of races ... It's never been about abortion, it's never been about the ERA ... I always love the demographic figure on abortion. The group most pro-choice in the country: young men between the ages of 18 and 25. The most responsible group, well known for taking, you know, responsibility for their actions. But, it's an economic vote ......" Good Morning America, 11/4/96

Los Angeles Times Election Day Exit Poll: This poll showed that 11 percent of women voters considered abortion one of the two most important issues in determining their vote. Of those, 54 percent voted for Bob Dole while only 40 percent voted for Bill Clinton. Polls from early 1996, 1994 and 1992 from a variety of sources also show similar results about the women's vote. (National Right to Life News, 11/14/96)

Syndicated Columnist Maggie Gallagher: "As Fred Barnes points out in the Weekly Standard, 'In 1996, running against the mildest of Democratic tides, economically conservative and socially liberal Republicans took a beating.' The list of pro-choice GOP losers include Massachusetts' Gov. William Weld (to Sen. John Kerry); Massachusetts Rep. Peter Torkildsen; New Jersey Rep. Dick Zimmer (who backed partial-birth abortions); Rhode Island's GOP Senate candidate Nancy Mayer; and California's GOP House candidate Rich Sybert (a former Pete Wilson aide).

Consider the vote outcome in Louisville, KY.: In 1994, despite the GOP sweep, pro-choice Republican House candidate Susan Stokes lost to Democrat Mike Ward. This year pro-life Republican Ann Northup made Ward's vote in favor of partial-birth abortions a campaign issue. She won.

What Republicans need is not a new moderate platform plank on abortion, but candidates like Northup who are not afraid of making an issue of Democrats' pro-choice "extremism." (Human Events, 12/13/96)

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Selection of RNC Chairman Will
Send Strong Signal

As we go to press, the Republic National Committee is preparing for the election of a new chairman. The 165 members of the Committee, which is made up of the National Committeeman, National Committeewoman, and State Chairman from each of the 50 states plus the territories, will vote on January 17 for one of several candidates for chairman and co-chairman of our Party. Who they elect will send a strong signal regarding the direction Republican officialdom will take as we move toward the year 2000. Will the new chairman and co-chairman be people who really care about righting the grave injustice of legal abortion in America? Will they actively promote the principles in our Platform and work to restore the winning Reagan coalition? Or will they be politicians who view the evil of abortion and the disintegration of American culture as nothing more than "issues" to be used as political tools for getting votes?

Candidates for Chairman of the
Republican National Committee

Jeannie Austin - Former co-chairman of the RNC and former chairman of the Florida Republican Party. In late 1994, Austin wrote a letter to GOP leaders calling on them to meet with Richard Tafel, president of the Log Cabin Republicans, an openly homosexual GOP group. In January, 1995 she opened a full service government relations/ business consultancy firm.

Bob Bennett - Ohio state chairman. A good fundraiser, he is credited with building the party in Ohio where, in 1994, Republicans swept all state-wide offices and took control of the state house for the first time in two decades. Bennett, who supports the Party's pro-life position, sent a booklet to RNC members entitled Partnership 2000, in which he chides the Party and Bob Dole for "shunning" our national platform. "After all, our principles--not naked pragmatism--are what will propel us into majority status."

John Herrington - California state chairman. When Herrington announced his intention to run for RNC chairman, the Los Angeles Times reported that he said he would not take a position on abortion, "a point that will probably not please strong-willed forces on either side."

Jim Nicholson - Colorado state chairman. Pro-life Republicans in CO tell us that, while Nicholson claims to be "personally" pro-life, they have not seen public activity on his part to indicate this. We are told that he is unlikely to change the direction of the party.

David Norcross - Former New Jersey party chairman and currently General Counsel to the RNC. Outspokenly pro-abortion-choice, Norcross is favored by NJ Governor Christine Todd Whitman and other northeastern establishment Republicans who do not support the life principles of the Republican Party.

Steve Merrill - Outgoing Governor of New Hampshire, Merrill seems to be splitting the northeastern vote with Norcross, although some say he is the establishment candidate. Merrill claims to be pro-life, but red flags went up when pro-abortion Governors Weld (MA), Ridge (PA) and Rowland (CT) were quick to get aboard his campaign. He is handicapped by three marriages, the fact that he is not a member of the RNC, and his failure to carry his state for Bob Dole in either the primary or the November election.

Tom Pauken - Texas state chairman. Credited with establishing Republican organizations in all 254 counties of Texas for the first time, for increasing the number of Republican office-holders, and for delivering the state for Bob Dole. Pauken is a 30 year veteran of the conservative, pro-life, pro-family movement. In discussing his bid for the RNC chairmanship, he said the following, "We've got to move quickly to get back on the offensive and to offer our alternative solutions to social problems. The philosophical conservatives have been in the back seat of the bus . . . and that's got to change."

Chuck Yob - National Committeeman from Michigan. Served as MI chairman for Phil Gramm in the primary. Yob is a lifelong pro-life conservative who has letters of support for his candidacy from the leaders of Right to Life of Michigan and Michigan Eagle Forum. His letter to members of the RNC, said the party must attract a majority of women voters to the Republican Party, attract the current generation of 18-29 year olds, and "embrace every legitimate aspiration of our people consistent with our basic principles of individual responsibility and free enterprise."

Candidates for Co-Chairman of the
Republican National Committee

Patty Cafferata - Former National Committeewoman from Nevada, Cafferata was elected to the Nevada Assembly in 1980, elected as Nevada State Treasurer in 1982, and as the Battle Mountain District Attorney in 1984. She is the daughter of former Republican Congresswoman Barbara Vucanovich and, like her mother, is staunchly pro-life.

Julie Finley - Finley is adamantly pro-abortion-choice, serving as an advisory board member for the Republican Coalition for Choice and a board member of WISH List, a PAC that has raised more than $600,000 for pro-choice Republican women candidates since its inception in 1992.

Patricia Harrison - A Washington, D.C. businesswoman, Patricia Harrison and her husband run a company that consults with major corporations on matters related to environmental public policy. She has been active in Republican circles, particularly with respect to women's issues.

Pro-Life State Watch
CALIFORNIA - Pro-life champion Rep. Bob Dornan, who has maintained since Election Day that he is a victim of voter fraud, has filed a formal complaint with the House of Representatives, asking that his narrow loss at the polls be overturned. Dornan was defeated by liberal, pro-abortion Democrat Loretta Sanchez by 979 votes out of 95,000 cast. His case got a modest boost when the Los Angeles Times reported that 19 people who voted in the race now have admitted that they had not yet been sworn in as citizens when they did so. The newspaper quoted most of the 19 as saying that they had mis-understood election laws and been given incorrect information by representatives of Hermandad Mexicana Nacional, a Hispanic civil rights organization based in Orange county, which registered at least 1,357 people to vote. (Dallas Morning News, 12/28/96)

LOUISIANA - State Rep. Woody Jenkins, a candidate for the U.S. Senate and one of the strongest and most courageous pro-life advocates in the nation, has filed evidence of election fraud with the Senate Rules Committee in an effort to overturn the 5,788-vote victory of pro-abortion Democrat Mary Landrieu. Jenkins officially alleges over 10,000 instances of irregularities, ranging from vote buying to illegal busing of voters to polls, from phony signatures to ballots cast in the names of dead or incompetent voters.

Governor Mike Foster, who supported Woody Jenkins in the Senate race, was shocked by his review of the documents Jenkins has compiled. Foster said he reviewed affidavits from people who said they were paid to vote more than once by members of LIFE, New Orleans Mayor Marc Morial's political organization. A sample: "They say you vote and they give you some money, and I wanted some money, so I just went in there and said I wanted to vote," said one person in Orleans Parish who claimed to have voted twice. Many who agreed to talk to Jenkins' staffers also complained they were shortchanged: $25 was offered and the person only got $15.

The Constitution of the United States provides in Article 1, Section 5: "Each House shall be the Judge of the Elections, Returns and Qualifications of its own Members..." Majority Leader Trent Lott has said that Landrieu will be seated with the rest of the Senate pending the outcome of the investigation by the Senate Rules Committee. (AP, 12/13/96)

TEXAS - The defeat of pro-abortion Republican Dolly Madison McKenna by pro-abortion incumbent Democrat Ken Bentsen in the December 10th runoff in Texas' 25th Congressional District should serve as another lesson for Republican Party officials who support pro-abortion candidates. What is the lesson? The lesson is that Republicans who are pro-abortion are highly unlikely to defeat Democrats who are also pro-abortion. Why? Because many Republican voters care enough about the great moral and social evil of abortion, and, the resultant destruction of the social fabric of American society, that they will stay home rather than vote for an abortion advocate just because she has an "R" next to her name. In addition, pro-life Democrats and Independents must have a reason to cross over and vote for a Republican. In races where the Republican is pro-life, the voters who care about the babies make the difference. Dolly Madison McKenna was a candidate with a mixed message. She claimed to be economically conservative while espousing a liberal, pro-abortion social agenda, which, historically, has carried an expensive price tag. She flaunted her antagonism toward grassroots Republicans who base their lives and their political activism on deep religious beliefs. She actively opposed the pro-life plank in the Republican National Platform. Her message failed to give voters a reason to retire Ken Bentsen.

KANSAS - The Kansas Republican Coalition for Life met its stated goal of achieving a 100% pro-life County Executive Committee, as well as a 100% pro-life delegation to the 4th Congressional District. Jim Sappington won election as Sedgwick County chairman, Mary Brand was elected as vice-chair, Debra Evens was chosen as treasurer and Linda Baker became party secretary. Eighty-two delegates and eighty-two alternates were elected as party representatives to the 4th Congressional District. Those endorsed by KRCL won easily over non-endorsed candidates. (KRCL News Release, Contact: Mark Gietzen. 11/18/96)

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Wirthlin Polls Voters on Pro-Life Plank
Republicans Gain From Pro-Life Position

Respondents to a Wirthlin Worldwide national poll were asked, "As you may know, the Republican party has taken a stand that supports protecting the lives of unborn children and opposes both partial-birth abortion and the use of federal funds for abortion. If the Republican party were to drop their official position on the issue of abortion, would you be more or less likely to vote Republican?" Thirty-five percent said they would be less likely to vote Republican and 29% more likely. Sixteen percent said they would be much less likely to vote Republican compared to 9 percent much more likely, a "pro-life gap" of 7 percent.


Republican National Coalition for Life    Box 618    Alton    Illinois 62002
618-462-5415    Fax: 618-462-8909    E-mail