National Partnership for Women & Families

In the News

GOP Resolution Urges Candidates To Tout Opposition to Abortion Rights

GOP Resolution Urges Candidates To Tout Opposition to Abortion Rights

January 22, 2014 — A new Republican National Committee resolution will urge GOP candidates to voice their opposition to abortion rights and challenge Democratic rhetoric portraying them as anti-women, CNN's "Political Ticker" reports.

Delaware National Committee member Ellen Barrosse drafted the measure, which is called the Resolution on Republican Pro-Life Strategy and co-sponsored by 15 additional RNC members. Barrosse plans to introduce it at an RNC meeting on Wednesday.

The resolution requests that the organization "support Republican pro-life candidates who fight back against Democratic deceptive 'war on women' rhetoric by pointing out the extreme positions on abortion held by Democratic opponents." The resolution cites polling data it says indicate that most people oppose abortion later in pregnancy and support parental consent laws.

Change in Messaging

Barrosse said she wrote the measure because she thinks Republican candidates -- like presidential nominee Mitt Romney and Virginia gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli -- did too little to defend themselves against Democratic claims of a Republican "war on women" in 2012 and 2013. She added, "Not talking about it" and "[n]ot responding has not worked well for us. It's a conversation the party has to have" (Hamby, "Political Ticker," CNN, 1/21).

RNC spokesperson Kirsten Kukowsi called the resolution "an acknowledgement that [the GOP] need[s] to take back messaging and positively promote our pro-life agenda" (Novack, National Journal, 1/21).

Democratic National Committee spokesperson Lily Adams responded that the resolution would hurt the GOP. She added that RNC leaders "promised [the] party was going to be 'fresh and new,' but as the RNC enters their Winter Meeting, it's clear nothing's changed" (Shabad, "Ballot Box," The Hill, 1/21).

The resolution could move to the full committee for a vote on Friday ("Political Ticker," CNN, 1/21).