Important Letter from Phil Burress

To: The Pro-Life / Pro-Family Community
From: Phil Burress
Around the state, calls and questions are being asked of pro-life groups that have or are considering linking natural marriage to the pro-life issue. One only needs to apply common sense to understand that defending the institution of natural marriage is critical to saving unborn children. Three organizations in Ohio, whose number one issue is life, saw the need to address the attack on marriage. They are Ohio Pro-Life Action ( Cleveland Right to Life ( and Lake County Right to life ( Other organizations are considering taking a stand as well.
There was a time when being pro-life was understood to also mean that you supported the right for children to grow up with a mom and dad who were committed to one another in a marriage relationship. Two things have occurred recently that have called into question the pro-life single issue strategy.
First, there is Senator Rob Portman. Senator Portman claims to be pro-life, yet never in nineteen years in Washington, D.C. did he bother to introduce one piece of pro-life legislation. Now, Senator Portman’s support of same-sex marriage places him in the same company as dozens of anti-family organizations that support abortion throughout the entire nine months of pregnancy.  
Second, recently Ohio Right to Life embraced and endorsed President Obama’s expansion of Medicaid here in Ohio. Highly respected organizations such as Cincinnati, Cleveland, and Toledo Right to Life, Tea Party groups and Citizens for Community Values sought to expose the fiscal and anti-life loopholes hidden within the expansion and therefore opposed expanding Medicaid.
As we enter this election season, we, the pro-life – pro-family community must be very careful of politicians like Rob Portman who believe they should still receive pro-life endorsements although they support same-sex marriage. We have recently learned that Senator Portman’s support of same-sex marriage dates back to 1996 when he privately argued against the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).
Questions are now being raised about his claim to be pro-life.  He recently tried to offer the Senate version of the Pain-Capable Unborn Protection Act. The problem is that Portman’s version of the bill gutted the important findings at the beginning of the House version. This is the legal basis asserted in the findings, essentially undermining the viability standard O’Connor used to uphold the “Abortion Control Act” ban at 24 weeks in Planned Parenthood v. Casey. Neglecting these findings leaves the viability standard unchallenged. It now appears Senator Rubio will be the main sponsor of the stronger bill.
CCV Action will continue to monitor these activities that seek to undermine the pro-family community by politicians using the divide and conquer method.