The former President Donald Trump has often been called the most pro-life president in American history by many on the right.

Trump is indeed responsible for nominating the conservative majority of judges on the Supreme Court who, nearly two years ago now, finally overturned Roe v. Wade. The former president never misses an opportunity to remind his supporters of this fact. 

On Monday, Trump released a video on Truth Social regarding the issue of abortion and the prospect of a possible “federal ban.”

“The Republican Party should always be on the side of the miracle of life and the side of mothers, fathers, their beautiful babies,” Trump said. Good start. He continued, “At the end of the day, this is all about the will of the people. You must follow your heart, or, in many cases, your religion or your faith. Do what’s right for your family, and do what’s right for yourself.” Okay—that’s more questionable. 

Finally, he spoke specifically about his opinion on abortion legislation: “My view is now that we have abortion where everybody wanted it from a legal standpoint, the states will determine by vote or legislation or perhaps both. And whatever they decide must be the law of the land—in this case, the law of the state.”

“You must follow your heart on this issue, but remember, you must also win elections to restore our culture,” he concluded.

Like anything else Trump does or says, this video has stirred up much controversy over the past week. Many Republicans were quick to praise the former president for maintaining a relatively moderate position on the abortion issue, as that stance is the most likely to give way to success in the upcoming presidential election. As Jim Antle wrote earlier this week for The American Conservative, “Social conservatives need more than political courage to be successful (though courage certainly helps). They have to think of how to effectively pursue their policy objectives and build political coalitions that can sustain their wins.”

Although the rhetoric of “you must follow your heart” and “do what’s right for yourself” is confusingly teetering on pro-choice style language, there is a point to Antle’s argument. Despite Trump’s inability to commit to a total pro-life worldview, he is the “lesser of two evils” on this particular issue.

Yet Trump delivered another blow to ardent pro-lifers following the decision by the Arizona Supreme Court that the state reinstitute an 1864 ban on abortion at all stages of pregnancy with exceptions only for the life of the mother. 

The Arizona Supreme Court did what the former president seemingly wanted: The issue of abortion was in the hands of the state, and the state acted accordingly. Arizona’s decision should be seen as a win for the pro-life movement and for the rule of law. 

But Trump took to Truth Social once more to lament the ruling: “The Supreme Court of Arizona went too far on their Abortion Ruling, enacting and approving an inappropriate Law from 1864,” he wrote. “So now the Governor and the Arizona Legislature must use HEART, COMMON SENSE, and ACT IMMEDIATELY, to remedy what has happened.”

Arizona Senate candidate Kari Lake jumped on her state’s Supreme Court decision too, releasing a vexing video on X

“I chose life, but I’m not every woman,” she said. “This issue has the ability to bring down our country.”

One X commenter rightly pointed out the hypocrisy in her statement:

Why would Trump and Lake be so against Arizona’s abortion ban if they truly believed that abortion regulation should be left up to individual states? A “remedy” is not necessary—the law was followed, and now more Arizonan babies will be allowed to live.

It’s an unfortunate reality that some pandering is required to push forward in today’s political scene. But tossing both the law and unquestionable morality to the side for the sake of getting a few more votes is sinister. Trump won’t get more people on his side with his statement on Arizona; in fact, he might actually lose support from pro-lifers who already were on the fence about his conflicting statements on abortion and for whom abortion is a top priority in the 2024 election. 

Matt Walsh of the Daily Wire fame put it well: “You can’t win votes by being a watered down Democrat. That only alienates and demoralizes your own supporters. How many times do Republicans have to learn this lesson?”

Originally found on American Conservative. Read More

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