Ahead of their party’s convention later this month, pro-life Democrats are asking what they call “the party of inclusion” to include them.
The pro-life group Democrats for Life of America launched their “Open the Big Tent” campaign Wednesday in an effort to show Democratic Party leaders that many of their potential voters are pro-life.
In an interview with TheBlaze, Kristen Day, executive director of Democrats for Life, said, “It’s time for us to take our party back.”
“People who hold pro-life views have been told to leave,” Day said. “We talk about diversity and inclusion, but where is that diversity and inclusion for pro-life members?”
Day said that the party’s 1996 platform included language that called for “respect” for those with differing views on abortion, but that language is absent today. She called the party’s new abortion platform “horrible” and said it will alienate voters who agree with the party on other issues, such as paid maternity leave, Medicaid expansion and a higher minimum wage.
Day noted that the party’s new abortion platform calls for the repeal of the Hyde Amendment — a move that would permit taxpayer funding for abortion procedures — and calls for support for Planned Parenthood by name. “What other corporation do we do that for?” Day asked.
She argued that winning over pro-life voters is essential if the party hopes to gain majorities in state legislatures and in Congress, but national party leaders continue to favor pro-abortion candidates at their own detriment.
“I don’t think they’re really thinking this through,” Day said, noting that, since 2008, Democrats have lost more than 1,000 state and national races — losses she said can be traced to the Democratic Party’s “hostility” towards pro-life candidates and voters.
“We’ve lost middle America,” Day said. "The Republicans are winning on this issue."
Day said that as part of their “Open the Big Tent” campaign Democrats for Life placed a billboard in Philadelphia highlighting a poll that revealed "1 in 3 Democrats are pro-life" to show delegates attending the convention how numerous these voters are.
The group is also petitioning the party to add language to its platform "inclusive" to pro-life voters.
Day said that Democrats for Life will attend the convention not in an effort to protest but to celebrate pro-life Democrats such as Gov. John Bel Edwards (D-La.) whom she called “the future of the Democratic Party.”
Come to Philadelphia for the Democratic Convention to celebrate pro-life democrats! https://t.co/f833gM8EMv— Democrats for Life (@demsforlife) July 6, 2016
“He won in a red state,” Day said. “He signed a Medicaid expansion and a 72-hour waiting period for an abortion into law. He has a consistent position on life.”
Day said that party leaders have “blinders” on preventing them from putting forward more candidates like Edwards in favor of candidates that support abortion.
“It’s time to stop this foolishness that’s killing our party,” Day said.
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