Trump taken to task by pro-life groups for blaming midterm losses on abortion issue

shutterstock 1829225360 President D.Trump participates in the first presidential campaign debate with Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, Sept. 29, 2020. | Alex Gakos/Shutterstock

Former president Donald Trump took to social media Sunday to blame Republican losses in the November midterm elections on candidates who opposed abortion for any reason.

His comments drew criticism from many pro-life advocates.

On his social media platform, Truth Social, Trump posted: “It wasn’t my fault that the Republicans didn’t live up to expectations in the MidTerms.”

“I was 233-20!” he added, referencing his win-to-loss ratio on candidates he endorsed. 

“It was the ‘abortion issue,’ poorly handled by many Republicans, especially those that firmly insisted on No Exceptions, even in the case of Rape, Incest, or Life of the Mother, that lost large numbers of Voters,” Trump said. 

“Also, the people that pushed so hard, for decades, against abortion, got their wish from the U.S. Supreme Court, & just plain disappeared, not to be seen again,” he added. 

“Plus, Mitch stupid $’s!”

The pro-life political advocacy organization Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America responded with a Jan. 2 statement asserting that unambiguously pro-life candidates have an electoral edge.

“The approach to winning on abortion in federal races, proven for a decade, is this: state clearly the ambitious consensus pro-life position and contrast that with the extreme view of Democrat opponents,” read the statement titled “GOP Presidential Nominees Must Put Forth a Strong Pro-Life Agenda.”

“We look forward to hearing that position fully articulated by Mr. Trump and all presidential candidates,” the statement said.

“There was ALSO a profound midterm lesson for future federal candidates: those who adopted the Ostrich Strategy on abortion lose,” the statement said. 

Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America was a strong advocate of the former president in both the 2016 and 2020 presidential elections for his pro-life record and even called him “The Most Pro-Life President Ever” on signs at the 2020 March for Life.

Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America was not the only one to respond to Trump’s comments. 

Lila Rose, president of the pro-life advocacy group Live Action, tweeted: “Trump is way out of line here on life. He does not have a pulse on where his potential base is — as many believed he has in the past.”

“This kind of nonsense will be a losing political strategy for him,” she wrote in the Jan. 2 tweet. 

Kristan Hawkins, president of the pro-life organization Students for Life, wrote in a Jan. 2 tweet that Trump “needs to be corrected” on his statement. 

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“This November, leaders like [Florida] Gov. Ron DeSantis, [North Carolina] Sen. Ted Budd, and [Florida] Sen. Marco Rubio, who proudly talked about their pro-life convictions, won in landslides. Meanwhile, Trump-backed politicians like Dr. Mehmet Oz & Blake Masters, who had challenges clearly defining their convictions, failed to win votes,” she wrote.

Her string of tweets can be read here.

Trump announced this past November that he is running for president in 2024.

In his Nov. 15 candidacy announcement, he made no mention of his many pro-life victories while in office from 2017–2021, CNN reported. Instead, he focused on several different issues such as the economy, inflation, gas prices, immigration, foreign policy, and the southern border crisis, among other topics.

In an interview with CNN in November, Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America, said that she was surprised that Trump did not mention his pro-life accomplishments in his campaign announcement. 

She was surprised because she said the former president “raised the bar very high for what it meant to be a pro-life president.”

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“It’s a deep moral failure not to step up in the most important moment for our movement, and if you think you can breeze through Iowa and South Carolina without a strong pro-life national vision, you’re just wrong,” Dannenfelser said. 

Hawkins told CNN: “For sure it was a missed opportunity.”

“We expect to be courted in the primary process and the person we want to get behind will be unapologetic in speaking up to defend the pre-born and calling for federal protections,” she said.

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