For Immediate Release: April 27, 2020
Six-Figure Ad Campaign Targets Anti-Choice Officials Putting Lives at Risk During a National Public Health Emergency
WASHINGTON, DC — NARAL Pro-Choice America Foundation today launched a new ad campaign exposing the hypocrisy of anti-choice officials who call themselves “pro-life” while jeopardizing the lives of millions of Americans amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
NARAL Pro-Choice America will be running seven 15-second digital ads in Washington, DC, Georgia, Texas, Iowa, and Maine, which showcase the hypocrisy on full display from anti-choice officials and extremists who are willing to risk lives and ignore health experts during the pandemic.
Specifically, the ads mention:
- Attorney General William Barr trying to end healthcare coverage for millions of Americans during a national public health emergency.
- Georgia Governor Brian Kemp, who ordered his state to end its lockdown despite still being in the midst of a pandemic, ignoring warnings from public health experts and jeopardizing the lives of millions of Georgians.
- Wisconsin General Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, who forced thousands of Wisconsin citizens to vote in-person during the pandemic instead of by mail, telling them it was “incredibly safe to go out” (while wearing full protective equipment himself).
- Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick, who suggested that elderly people should be willing to sacrifice their lives in order to keep businesses open and save the economy.
- Jerry Falwell Jr. reopening Liberty University against health guidelines, leading students to file a class-action lawsuit accusing Falwell of “profiteering” off of the pandemic as COVID-19 continues to spread across campus.
- 17 state Attorneys General who call themselves “pro-life” yet are suing to end the Affordable Care Act and end healthcare coverage for millions in the midst of a pandemic and record unemployment and job loss.
- Congressman Trey Hollingsworth (IN-09) who prioritized money over families’ lives by publicly pushing to end social distancing, in a direct contradiction to medical guidelines.
“These times make crystal clear what we’ve always known: for so many of these officials, ‘pro-life’ is a smoke screen, not a commitment that they care to uphold,” said Ilyse Hogue, President of NARAL Pro-Choice America. “When it suits them, they’re happy to endanger lives to push their agenda forward as we have seen all too well during this COVID crisis. From exploiting the pandemic to close clinics and endanger women who need abortion care to asking people to go back to work before it’s safe, their actions demonstrate a distinct lack of value placed on lives.”
Anti-choice officials, including both governors and attorneys general, in multiple states have seized on the COVID-19 crisis to advance their agenda to end legal abortion. Anti-choice Attorneys General in 20 states have signed amicus curiae briefs calling for restricting abortion access during the pandemic: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and West Virginia.
In addition to the ad campaign announced today, NARAL Freedom Fund recently launched a separate digital ad campaign to hold Donald Trump and Republican politicians accountable for exploiting the COVID-19 pandemic and weaponizing harmful disinformation in order to ban abortion.
NARAL will continue to educate Americans about disinformation pushed by the anti-choice movement and Republican party as they work to ban abortion and threaten women who seek abortion care with jail time and other forms of punishment. NARAL will shine a spotlight on the actors who prioritize their own personal beliefs and ideology over the health, safety, and lives of others, creating a powerful moral imperative to take action.
NARAL Pro-Choice America and its network of state affiliates and chapters are dedicated to protecting and expanding reproductive freedom for all. For more than 50 years, NARAL has worked to guarantee that every woman has the right to make personal decisions regarding the full range of reproductive choices, including preventing unintended pregnancy, bearing healthy children, and choosing legal abortion. Since 1969, NARAL has made history, grown to over 2.5 million members, and met the moments that have defined this fight with action, power, and freedom. In recognition of its work defending our constitutional right to choose, Fortune Magazine described NARAL as “one of the top 10 advocacy groups in America.”