On a usually happy and even triumphant day, pro-life leaders found themselves angry at a vote in the U.S. House that never happened.
Much of the talk today at the annual March for Life, that likely brought close to 500,000 mostly young people to Washington DC, was about how House leaders canned a bill that would have banned abortion after the 20th week of gestation, the point at which an unborn child is said to feel pain.
Much of the anger was directed at Republican Congresswoman Renee Ellmers of North Carolina, who, as reported by Breitbart News, organized a group of female House members to block the vote on a bill that leadership had promised to pro-lifers.
There was talk backstage at the rally preceding the March for Life that Ellmers needs to be defeated in her next primary. There was also talk of open electoral “warfare” if the bill is not brought up for a vote — and soon.
Marjorie Danenfelser is president of the Susan B. Anthony List, a group that spent $13 million to elect pro-life legislators in the last cycle. When asked by Breitbart News if Ellmers would get a primary challenge, Danenfelser said, “That tidal wave has already begun. Before you came on the air, the same day that she began to discus ditching this bill to the main stream media, creating a firestorm on an issue that this was never about, that this was about rape. That’s going to happen and she deserves it.”
Danenfelser predicts Ellmers will face more than one primary opponent.
Kristan Hawkins agreed. Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America, a group with more than 800 chapters in colleges and universities around the country, told Breitbart News she was upset on Friday night:
When Ellmers said that she didn’t think the millennials were prolife, therefore the fifth or sixth vote the new Congress takes shouldn’t be about abortion, which is just a lie. This generation is pro-life. Every poll shows this generation’s pro-life. I called her office and I said, ‘I don’t know who’s feeding you these polls but you need to fire immediately [sic] them immediately because they obviously can’t read numbers.
Hawkins wondered how the GOP is going to attract Millennials when Millennials are overwhelmingly pro-life, and the first act as a new Congress is a “cowardly act.” Hawkins said she was going to the House today and show them we are a pro-life generation.
Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, told Breitbart News part of his frustration was that the bill was identical to the one that was passed a few years ago.
On the question of whether Ellmers needs to lose her job, Perkins told Breitbart News:
You take these things collectively in looking at someone’s record. But this is a very troubling posture that one has taken here in Ellmers’ case. It’s not just that she didn’t support this bill. It’s that she worked to undermine this bill. This was a bill in its exact same form passed the House two years ago. For her and a handful of others to raise concerns at the 11th hour, knowing the vote was coming on the day of the March, is very troubling, and I think her constituents should take note of this, and I do think it should be a factor into whether or not she should continue as their Congresswoman.
When asked about the prospects of the bill ever getting a vote, Danenfelser told Breitbart News, “If this bill is not voted on in the next few weeks, there will be war.”