A day after coming under fire from influential pro-lifers, Governor Scott Walker announced his support for a ban on abortions performed after the 20th week.
On Sunday Walker appeared on Fox News Sunday and was asked about his pro-life views. He seemed to duck the issue, saying there was not much he could do about it since it was a Supreme Court decision. Pro-lifers including Princeton’s Robert George and Notre Dame’s Gerald Bradley expected more and said so.
Today Walker issued an open letter saying if the Wisconsin legislature sends him a ban on all abortions after the 20th week he would sign it. He also pledged to seek a similar federal ban. This would be a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade that allows for abortion through all nine months of pregnancy for virtually any reason or no reason.
In the letter, Walker writes: “Life is a value I learned from my parents, and it’s a value I have cherished every day, predating my time in politics. My policies throughout my career have earned a 100% rating with pro-life groups in Wisconsin. Just in my first term I signed numerous pieces of pro-life legislation and I will continue working for every life.”
The 20-week ban is a priority of the pro-life movement.
It would ban abortions at the point in pregnancy that the child is said to feel pain. Twenty-week bans have been passed in a number of states with more expected. Federal legislation was supposed to have been voted on the U.S. House of Representatives on January 23, to coincide with the annual March for Life. The effort was blocked at the last moment by a group of women members of the House who have now come under fire from the pro-life movement, most especially the Member thought to have led the block, Rene Ellmers, Republican of North Carolina.
Frank Cannon, president of the American Principles Project, engineered the public complaints about Walker’s performance on the Chris Wallace show. He tells Breitbart News, “When you call on someone to do something and they respond all you can say is well done. Well done, Governor Walker.”
Marjorie Danenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List, which support pro-life women in politics, said, “Governor Walker is making his pro-life convictions concrete in his presidential platform.” She adds:
His commitment to the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act in Wisconsin and nationally is the best first step for a pro-life candidate and one that is embraced by the nation. This popular legislation has been endorsed by almost every Republican hopeful for 2016.
The only likely candidate who has not yet endorsed the measure is Governor Chris Christie. We encourage him to back up his strong statements at CPAC last week by taking this concrete action.
A 20-week ban is popular with voters. According to a Qunnipiac poll from a few months ago, 60 percent of Americans support such a ban, including 56 percent of independents. Almost half of Democrats support the 20 week ban.