Carly Fiorina will be the only presidential candidate invited to speak at the 2016 March for Life rally because, according to the event’s president, she embodies the theme of this year’s march: “Pro-Life and Pro-Woman Go Hand-In-Hand.”
“Mrs. Fiorina was asked to speak because she embodies the theme particularly well; she will speak only to the theme, not her candidacy,” Jeanne Mancini, president of the March for Life Education and Defense Fund, said in a statement to Breitbart News, during an election year in which the pro-life base of the GOP can tout many strong candidates who believe in the sanctity of human life.
“The March for Life does not get involved in electioneering,” Mancini continued. “Nor are we able to accommodate every person who asks to speak at the March. For example, we don’t have capacity for every pro-life legislator who requests a speaking slot; congress is only one small (albeit critical) portion of the March for Life rally.”
And any elected official, current or former, is most welcome to stand with congressional members when they speak. We are also hoping that pro-life candidates will be active on social media using the #whywemarch in addition taking a public pledge to speak next year at the March for Life if elected President. We recognize the heartfelt commitment to the pro-life cause by many of the candidates and the critically important work they have done in office in furthering our cause.
A press release Tuesday announced that, as a “pro-life businesswoman,” Fiorina “exemplifies the theme of this year’s march.”
“Carly Fiorina will be among many inspiring women who can share their testimony as female advocates of pro-life issues,” said Mancini in a statement. “Her national profile and work in the pro-life movement embody this year’s theme.”
Sen. Joni Ernst is also a confirmed speaker at the March for Life rally.
The March for Life press statement continues:
When Carly Fiorina was hired as Hewlett-Packard’s CEO, she was the first woman to take control of a Fortune 100 company. Since then, she has spearheaded the Unlocking Potential PAC, which advanced the pro-life movement through messaging for women and the American Conservative Union, whose mission includes protecting all lives, especially the unborn. Carly Fiorina has a national platform and has advocated for pro-life movement, including participating in March for Life Events such as the “Welcoming Every Life” speech and panel discussion last year.
During the CNN GOP presidential debate in September, Fiorina sharply criticized Planned Parenthood’s organ sales and cited a video of a “fully formed fetus on the table, its heart beating, its legs kicking, while someone says, ‘We have to keep it alive to harvest its brain.’”
As Gregg Cunningham of Center for Bio-Ethical Reform wrote at Breitbart News, Fiorina was “immediately and predictably attacked by medical ‘experts’ who accused her… of fraud.”
Another panel of experts consulted by Cunningham, however, found that Fiorina was “right on the facts, right on the law, and right on the issues of human decency.”
On the issue of the choice of only Fiorina as a speaker among the 2016 candidates at the March for Life rally, Penny Nance, president of Concerned Women For America (CWA) tells Breitbart News:
There’s a large field of candidates… and I can tell you from personal experience that [the March for Life rally] is the most popular ticket in town on January 22, and everybody wants to speak at the March for Life – for good reason – because it’s the largest gathering of pro-lifers in the nation, at any time of the entire year.
Nance also stressed that the rally is put on by the March for Life organization, which chooses the speakers it sees fit.
“They have the right to choose whoever they want to ask,” she said. “And, second, they know that standing there – unlike the national parties – the Democrats don’t understand that many people standing there in the cold with their hats and gloves on, shivering, aren’t necessarily Republicans.”
Nance continued that Democrat and Independent pro-lifers may not agree with other political positions of Republicans.
“I understand their thinking on that, and it does make sense since the theme is Pro-Life, Pro-Woman, that Carly Fiorina would be chosen, specifically since she has run on that issue,” she said. “She has been the one more than anyone else who has taken on Planned Parenthood, and taken it on the chin for the issue, too.”
Nance observed that Fiorina has been heckled by Planned Parenthood supporters who threw condoms at her.
“She’s earned the scorn of the left because of her pro-life views,” she explained.
Still, Nance acknowledges that most of the other GOP candidates are “passionately pro-life… Some of them are friends of mine… and I know how deep their convictions run,” she said.
“But, especially in a year when Republicans will, more than likely, be running against a woman, I think it’s important that we push the message forward that women are not monolithic,” she continued, “and that, by and large, we may not all agree [on everything]… but we certainly do not agree with Hillary Clinton, that abortion should be legal at any point in gestation up until birth for any reason, that a woman can have any number of abortions, and that it should all be paid for by taxpayers.”
“I respect the fact that Carly Fiorina has paid a price for her outspoken support,” Nance added. “And it is always true that women earn a particularly deep spite from the left because of our pro-life views, and I think we have seen that with Carly Fiorina’s candidacy.”
Breitbart News received no response to a request for comment from the Fiorina campaign, or from the campaigns of Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Rick Santorum, Mike Huckabee, or Chris Christie.
The March for Life is held each year on January 22—the anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decisions in the cases of Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton—on the national mall in Washington, D.C.