The acting director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), who was berated by Democrat presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders for his Christian faith, will address the sold-out National Pro-Life Summit the day after the March for Life in Washington, DC.
“I’m incredibly honored to be speaking at this year’s National Pro-Life Summit, both personally and while serving under the most pro-life Administration in history,” Russell Vought said in exclusive comments to Breitbart News about the first of its kind event scheduled for Saturday.
“Since taking office, President Trump has worked tirelessly to defend our country’s most vulnerable Americans and delivered on critical pro-life policies including amending Title X, ending tax-payer funding of abortion both at home and abroad, and instituting religious freedom protections,” he added.Senate Budget Committee
In June 2017, Sanders grilled Vought, then President Donald Trump’s nominee for OMB deputy director, not regarding his budgetary policies, but for his Christian faith.
During a hearing of the Senate Committee on the budget, Sanders accused Vought of being bigoted because, the year before, the nominee had written at the Resurgent about Dr. Larycia Hawkins, a political science professor at Wheaton College, Vought’s alma mater, who was placed on administrative leave after wearing a hijab to support Muslims.
Hawkins had consulted with the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) prior to donning the hijab. In a Facebook post, she had also suggested that Christians and Muslims worship the same God.
An irate Sanders quoted Vought’s writing during the hearing:
Muslims do not simply have a deficient theology. They do not know God because they have rejected Jesus Christ, His Son, and they stand condemned.
“Do you believe that that statement is Islamophobic?” Sanders vociferously interrogated Vought.
“Senator, I’m a Christian, and I wrote that piece in accordance with the statement of faith at Wheaton College,” Vought replied.
I don’t know how many Muslims there are in America. Maybe a couple million. Are you suggesting that these people stand condemned? What about Jews? Do they stand condemned too?
[T]his country [is] made of people who are not just – I understand that Christianity is the majority religion, but there are other people of different religions in this country and around the world. In your judgment, do you think that people who are not Christians are going to be condemned?
Do you think that’s respectful of other religions?
“I would simply say, Mr. Chairman, that this nominee is really not someone who this country is supposed to be about,” Sanders concluded his grilling. “I will vote ‘no.’”
Now, a press release from Students for Life of America (SFLA), one of the organizers of the National Pro-Life Summit, noted that Vought “is better known as the man behind the plan to defund Planned Parenthood of $60 million Title X dollars.”
In February 2019, one month after Vought became OMB acting director, the Trump administration issued its final rule that enforced the policy that federal taxpayer funds for family planning services may not be used to support abortion in any way.
The rule ultimately would block about $60 million in family planning funding to Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers who refused to adhere to the policy underscoring that abortion is not family planning.
“There are still millions of dollars left to relieve Planned Parenthood of – but this was an exciting start to the dismantling of the abortion giant,” SFLA stated. “We are pleased to have Russ Vought join us at this important event to share how he played a role in defunding Planned Parenthood.”
Vought will join other pro-life leaders, including former Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI); Charlotte Pence, author and the daughter of Vice President Mike Pence; David Daleiden, citizen journalist and project lead at Center for Medical Progress; and Matt Birk, former American football center and Super Bowl champion.
“We are encouraged by the thousands who will march around the Capitol this week and hold to the conviction that all life is valuable and worthy of protection,” Vought told Breitbart News. “Under the leadership of this President, we will not stop until every child – regardless of size, level of development, or disability – is cherished and welcomed.”
About the Summit, Kristan Hawkins, SFLA president, added, “The Pro-Life Generation is gearing up for Life after Roe, training at events like the National Pro-Life Summit and organizing for the day that the poorly decided Roe v. Wade collapses and the issue of abortion returns to the states.”