Nov 30, 2021
Mike Pence Urges Supreme Court Justices to Overturn Roe v Wade Speech Transcript
Former Vice President Mike Pence gave a speech on abortion on November 30, 2021 and urged the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade. Read the transcript of the speech here.
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Mike Pence: (00:00)
That was so nice. Great comment. Thank you, Marjorie Dannenfelser for that overly generous introduction. And more importantly, allow me to take this opportunity to say thank you to someone who I have known and our family has known for many years. Marjorie Dannenfelser, thank you for faithfully devoting your life to the cause of life. We are all grateful. Well, I have a tradition of beginning speeches on this topic, especially those on the National Mall. Welcoming you here to the National Press Club, allow me to say, I’m Mike Pence and I’m pro-life.
Mike Pence: (01:13)
And I’m truly honored to be here with so many friends and supporters of the Susan B. Anthony List, an organization that has literally saved countless lives across this country and has raised up a new generation of pro-life leaders in the Congress and in state houses and city halls around the country. The SBA list has truly transformed America for the better over the past three decades and we are in your debt. And to all the advocates of life who join us here today, from the bottom of my heart, let me say thank you to each and every one of you. Thank you for standing for life. It should fill your heart with immense joy and pride to know that every night, somewhere in America as the sun goes down, there’s a young mother in almost every community in the land tucking a little one to bed, kissing her forehead, saying a prayer, and thanking God that you helped her choose life. And I thank God for each and every one of you too. As Americans, we hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal and they are endowed by their create with certain inalienable rights. And that first among these is life.
Mike Pence: (02:53)
I have long believed that a society can be judged by how it deals with its most vulnerable. The agent, the infirmed, the disabled, and the unborn. And I did not come here today to speak about popular opinion or jurisprudence. I came here today to speak about right and wrong. To say, life is a human right and urge the Supreme Court of the United States to choose life. Today, we gather on the verge of what may be a new era in American history. An era in which all human life is, once again, cherished and respected. An era in which the great moral questions of our time are once again decided by the people through their chosen representatives instead of unelected judges. As we stand here today, we may well be on the verge of an era when the Supreme court sends Roe vs. Wade to the ash heap of history where it belongs.
Mike Pence: (04:08)
Tomorrow, our Supreme Court with their oral arguments in Dobbs vs. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the case will decide the constitutionality of a Mississippi law that bans most of abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy. The pro-family advocacy group I founded, Advancing American Freedom, along with SBA List and hundreds of pro-life advocates, including many gathered here today filed amicus briefs in support of the 15 week limit on elective abortions. And we were honored to do so. We are asking the court in no uncertain terms to make history. We are asking the Supreme Court of the United States to overturn Roe V Wade and restore the sanctity of life to the center of American law. St. Augustine said, “The truth is like a lion. You don’t have to defend it. Just let it loose and it will defend itself.” So here’s the truth about abortion. Since the Supreme Court legalized abortion in 1973, the heartbreaking consequences of the Roe decision cannot be overstated. More than 62 million unborn children in the United States have been aborted. In other words, nearly 20% of the US population is gone. Lives of incalculable promise were ended before they were born. And countless young women, now for two generations, have experienced the heartbreak and sorrow, and often late in life, the regret that can last a lifetime. Like all of you, throughout my career I have accepted Dr. John Wilke’s admonition. To love them both. And when I think of young women victimized by the for-profit abortion industry breaks my heart. I think of the young mother who said not long ago, “Not a day goes by that I don’t think of my lost child.” And she added, “I would never wish this pain on anybody.” And those stories of heartbreak are legion. The court’s misguided decision in Roe vs. Wade has inflicted a tragedy, not only on our nation, but on humanity that’s hard to fathom. Its scale is unprecedented in the history of mankind. In the 48 years since the court’s ruling, unborn children have been relegated into a cast of second-class citizens, devoided the most basic human rights. Precious babies have lived outside the protection of the law, and at the mercy of a culture that devalues them, and an abortion industry that profits from their suffering.
Mike Pence: (07:53)
Previously, the court has justified abortion on the grounds that it was essential to the stability of American society. But the truth is, nothing has been more destabilizing in our society for the last 50 years than legalized abortion on demand. I believe it’s no coincidence. But the last half century has seen a persistent rise in family instability, single parent households, a decline in family formation, an increase in unplanned pregnancies and an explosion of sexually transmitted diseases. An abortion is even being used increasingly as a tool of eugenics, for the elimination of children of the so-called wrong sex or race and those suffering disability. Today, more than two thirds of all babies with Down syndrome in the United States are aborted in their mother’s womb. As governor of Indiana, I got to know many families.
Mike Pence: (09:02)
I got to know many families with Down’s children. I saw the endless joy of those families in the gift of the life they were given. And I was proud to sign a law banning elective abortions based on a child’s race, gender, or disability. And it is time to end this injustice across America. Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood, once wrote that eugenics was, and I quote, “the most adequate and thorough avenue in the solution of racial, political, and social problems.” Today, Planned Parenthood shamelessly builds on Margaret Sanger’s legacy with the vast majority of its abortion clinics located in Black and Hispanic neighborhoods. Despite being less than one-third of America’s population, Blacks and Hispanics account for nearly two-thirds of all abortions performed. It’s a travesty. As long as Roe remains enforced, the radical left in this country will never stop pushing for more and more extreme abortion related policies. Abortion providers have been caught on video discussing the sale of aborted fetal body parts. And recently and horrifically, unsealed documents show abortion providers charging tens of thousands of dollars for body parts harvested from unborn children.
Mike Pence: (10:49)
And in Democrat run cities across America, they’re now providing financial incentives for abortion by implementing paid abortion leave. In Boston, for example, government employees can receive 12 weeks of paid leave for an abortion, the same benefit provided for childbirth. In days gone by, progressives viewed abortion as a necessary evil to be tolerated. Remember when they used to say “abortion should be safe, legal, but rare”? Those days are over. Today, many on the left believe it is a moral good, that abortion is to be celebrated and encouraged, even as it was on a recent broadcast of Saturday Night Live. It’s not hard to imagine that the day will soon come when the radical left begins touting abortion as a tool for managing population growth, as the Chinese Communist Party has done for decades. Today, as the Supreme Court prepares to hear oral arguments in those hallowed halls, we are here to declare with one voice, “No more.”
Mike Pence: (12:22)
And we are gathered here today on this eve of those important oral arguments to say that we will never stop working to create a world where every child born and unborn is protected by law and cherished in life as a precious gift from God. And today, there is hope on the horizon that the days of Roe V. Wade are coming to an end. Every serious legal scholar in America knows that the Roe decision was manufactured out of whole cloth to achieve a predetermined political and ideological goal. Even the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg once wrote that the court’s decision in Roe versus Wade was “heavy handed judicial intervention that was difficult to justify.” Now, our Supreme Court has a chance to right that historic work wrong once and for all. And despite what the abortion lobby says, the 15 week limit set forth by the Mississippi law is by any international standard perfectly reasonable.
Mike Pence: (14:05)
Thanks to advances in modern medicine, the humanity of a 15 week old child in the womb is undeniable. At 15 weeks of development, a baby’s face formed her. She has fingernails, eyebrows, and hair. She can make a fist, suck her thumb, and she has a beating heart. She can feel pain and she’s created in the image of God the same as you and me. A 15 week limit on elective abortion is not extreme by any measure. Rather, it is the radical left’s demands for taxpayer funded unlimited abortion on demand up to the moment of birth that’s extreme. And, remember, that’s exactly what Roe versus Wade makes possible. But consider the nations of Europe, often held out by left wing politicians as a model for America to emulate, according to the Lozier Institute, 47 out of 50 European countries limit elective abortion prior to 15 weeks. France, Spain, and Belgium have a limit of 14 weeks, and a majority of European countries are even more restrictive. Germany, Norway, Switzerland, Denmark, Greece, Austria, Italy, and Ireland ban abortion on demand after 12 weeks.
Mike Pence: (15:50)
When it comes to abortion policy, America has more in common with China and North Korea than it does with Western nations of Europe. By upholding Mississippi’s law, the Supreme Court can move America away from the radical fringe and squarely back into the mainstream of Western thought and jurisprudence. The fact is, Americans are ready for an end to the judicial tyranny of Roe V. Wade. And Americans are ready for a return of this issue back to their democratically elected representatives and the people. And this is an important point to stress because the left desperately wants to obscure it, the end of Roe does not mean an end to the debate over abortion. There will still be plenty of debate, but the decisions will no longer be made by unelected judges, but by elected officials chosen by and accountable to the American people.
Mike Pence: (17:03)
It’s easy to understand why progressives oppose allowing the democratic process to work when it comes to setting abortion policy. From the very moment Roe was decided, the American people have been making their preferences clear through the steady march of pro-life legislation enacted by democratically elected representatives each and every year. Think about it, in the decades since Roe, Congress has banned partial birth abortion, Congress in the states have restricted taxpayer funding of abortion, 38 states have passed laws that require parental involvement in a minor’s decision, 33 states require expecting mothers to receive counseling before an abortion is performed, 26 states have enacted a mandatory waiting period, and nearly every state in America has allowed healthcare providers to-
Mike Pence: (18:03)
And nearly every state in America has allowed healthcare providers to decline to perform abortions for reasons of faith and conscience. When the Supreme Court overturns Roe V. Wade, and I believe with all my heart that day will come, either now or in the near future, it will not come as a surprise to anyone. It will simply be the culmination of a 50 year journey, whose course and destination has been driven by the will of the American people.
Mike Pence: (18:45)
As Marjorie said, like all the pro-life champions in this room, I am not new to the cause of life, but I have not grown weary in this fight. I stood for life during my years in Congress and I offered the first legislation to defund Planned Parenthood on the floor of the United States House of Representatives. As governor of Indiana, I championed the unborn and adoption reform, for to be pro-life, you must be pro adoption. And I couldn’t be more proud to have served as Vice President in the most pro-life administration in American history. Every day we stood without apology for the sanctity of life.
Mike Pence: (19:36)
Under our administration, we reinstated the Mexico City policy to ensure that no taxpayer dollars were used to fund or promote abortion around the world. We cut funding to the United Nations populations fund. We opposed efforts at the UN to make abortion an international human right. And we also confirmed nearly 300 conservative judges to our courts at every level, including three Supreme Court justices, all of whom are committed to upholding all the God given liberties enshrined in our Constitution. And it was perhaps my highest honor as President of the Senate to cast the tie breaking vote to allow states to defund Planned Parenthood.
Mike Pence: (20:28)
But how times have changed. Today a new administration is advancing abortion on demand at home and abroad. President Biden has even abandoned his historic support of the Hyde Amendment. And now he and Democrat majorities in the Congress support taxpayer funding of abortion. Now more than ever, we need our new conservative majority in the Supreme Court of the United States to return the question of life to the states and the people. And traveling across this great nation of ours, I can tell you firsthand that the support for the pro-life cause is growing stronger every day, in no small part because of the work of each and every one of you. As we stand here today, nearly 500 pro-life bills have been introduced nationwide this year alone. And while I can’t say how the Supreme Court will rule, today I can say with absolute confidence that the tide has turned for the pro-life movement and momentum for the cause of life has never been stronger. Life is winning across America. Life is winning because of the quiet councils between mothers and daughters, between grandmothers and granddaughters, the truth about abortions being told. And life is winning because of the relentless advocacy of groups like the SBA List and others so well represented here who have never given up the fight for the unborn.
Mike Pence: (22:38)
And the American people deserve to know that our safety net for mothers and babies has never been stronger. America is ready, willing, and able to support women in need. Even as states work to reduce abortions, they’re also working to increase support for vulnerable mothers. Texas, for example, has created $100 million alternatives to abortion program to provide counseling, material assistance and housing support to women experiencing a crisis pregnancy. And similar programs are expanding all across the country.
Mike Pence: (23:14)
Truth is, life is winning. I think maybe most especially because of the compassion and the work of nearly 3000 pro-life pregnancy centers nationwide. These organizations are devoted to supporting mothers in their courageous decision to give their children life and a future, oftentimes under the most difficult circumstances. And the counselors, most of whom are volunteers, and many of whom are women recovering from the heartbreak of abortion, inspire me every day.
Mike Pence: (24:07)
In 2019 alone, crisis pregnancy centers served nearly 2 million expectant mothers with compassion and care, and I can attest to it firsthand. That was a little more than a year ago I had the privilege of being the first Vice president of the United States to visit a crisis pregnancy center and thank them for all their work.
Mike Pence: (24:40)
Finally, life is winning in America as a new generation has been awakened. The eyes of millions of young people have been opened and we’re changing the culture for life one life at a time. I witness this every year that we attended the March for Life on our nation’s capital. And over these past 20 years, traveling all across this country, even this past year as a private citizen, I can attest this rising generation is the pro-life generation.
Mike Pence: (25:26)
Life is winning in America, but now we need life to win in the highest court in the land. In the coming days, as the Supreme Court takes up this fateful decision, I want to encourage conservatives, those here today and all across America, to be confident, keep the faith and pray. The effective inferent prayer of a righteous people avail of much. So I encourage each and every one of you, tomorrow and every day after, to take this matter to the throne of grace. We have not struggled for so long. We have not traveled so far, overcome so much to turn back so close to the finish line. And never doubt, the American people are on our side. They’re ready for a fresh start. They know that the decision before the Supreme Court is the same choice voters will face in the next election. It’s a choice between two distinct futures, two distinct worldviews that are as far from one another as the east is from the west. The left believes children are a burden. We believe children are give from God. The left believes the inst-
Mike Pence: (27:03)
We believe children are a gift from God. The left believes the institution of the family is outdated and unnecessary, we believe that family is the bedrock of civilization.
Mike Pence: (27:13)
The left believes it’s their right to force their radical beliefs on a society through unelected judges. We believe in government of the people, by the people and for the people. The question before the court and before the American people is no less than this. What kind of nation do we want to be, in the balance of the 21st century? Do we want to be a nation that tolerates abortion on demand? Denying our country the incalculable promise of men and women who would contribute so much to the life of this nation? Do we want to be a nation that tolerates the ending of innocent, unborn human life through all nine months of pregnancy? Because that’s what the left wants.
Mike Pence: (28:26)
Or in the time that we have ahead, in this century and beyond, do we want to be a nation that champions and celebrates the gift of human life? A nation that comes alongside women in their hour of need. A nation that stands up for the weak and fights for the defenseless. A nation that says proudly and without apology that every life matters, every child deserves a chance. I believe that is who we are, in our heart of hearts as Americans. And I believe that is who we will be again.
Mike Pence: (29:15)
So on this day, the day before The Supreme Court hears the oral arguments in the Dobbs case, we hope and pray that our renewed conservative majority on the court will restore the sanctity of life to the center of American law. This is about saving the lives of millions of children yet unborn. But make no mistake about it, this is also about justice and the future of this nation. I believe that ending an innocent defenseless human life, grieves the heart of God. The one who said “Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you.” Admonished us in the proverbs with these words, “Rescue those being led away to death. Hold back those staggering towards slaughter. If you say, but we knew nothing about this, does not he who waves the heart perceive it? Does not he who guard your life, know it?”
Mike Pence: (30:38)
In words that are enshrined in the very walls of the Jefferson Memorial. We remember what Thomas Jefferson said. And it echoes into our time and into this debate. Thomas Jefferson wrote ” God who gave us life, gave us liberty. Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed the conviction that these liberties are a gift from God?” And then he added “Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just. And his justice cannot sleep forever.” So to everyone here and those looking on, thank you. Thank you for bringing us to this day, when the American people are on the eve of an opportunity to reclaim a society where every life is treated with compassion, dignity, and respect. For our children and grandchildren, born and unborn. For young women facing the crisis of an unexpected pregnancy. For the rule of law and for America. I urge my fellow Americans to cherish life. To pray tomorrow and every day between now and next spring for the Justices on our Supreme Court to have the courage to seize this moment for life. And join us, as we humbly ask our new conservative majority on The Supreme Court of the United States, overturn Roe v. Wade, and give America a new beginning for life.
Mike Pence: (32:47)
Thank you. God bless you and God bless America.