I was given this news tip yesterday, but actually Time magazine broke the story November 21, which no one apparently picked up on, perhaps because it was only posted online:
[B]ut what’s clear is that the anti-abortion movement is fractured. Colorado Right to Life has a mailing list of 10,000 and a $100,000 budget but is no longer affiliated with the National Right to Life Committee – “kicked out,” says [CRTL spokesman and Denver Christian radio talk show host Bob] Enyart. He explains that the NRLC has refused to back “personhood” for decades, citing the unlikelihood that it would pass muster with the U.S. Supreme Court….
And this week in Washington, the same coalition, with representatives from 12 states, plans to announce a new national splinter group – American Right to Life – which will be headed by Brian Rohrbough, whose son Daniel died in the Columbine shootings and who has been an outspoken critic of the American “culture of death.”
Here’s more of the scoop, provided by Leslie Hanks of CRTL and ARTL, who I called after getting the tip….
The foundational group met in mid-November to formally organize. It includes heavy hitters in the pro-life movement:
John Archibold, co-founder of Americans United for Life and NRLC
Flip Benham of Operation Save America
Judie Brown of American Life League
Bob Dornan, 20-year U.S. Congressman
Fr. Tom Euteneuer of Human Life International
Dr. Alan Keyes
Judge Roy Moore
Matt Trewhella, Missionaries to the Preborn
Read more names of charter members on ARTL’s website.
As Time stated, Rohrbough is president. Vice president is Steve Curtis, former CO Republican state chairman and co-owner of Lifecommercials.com.
ARTL will be a subsidiary of CRTL and therefore have 501(c)3 and 501(c)4 status. Legal paperwork is being finalized. ARTL is not affiliated with the former ARTL of the late 90s. This group received permission from that group to take the name.
ARTL is taking on NRLC for 2 principle reasons. According to ARTL:
NRLC has deemphasized personhood as the focal point of the pro-life movement, i.e., the Human Life Amendment, guaranteeing constitutional protect from the moment of fertilization.
“For a quarter century, NRTL and others have dictated a strategy of child-killing regulations (consent; waiting, consent, PBA, etc., ‘and then you can kill the baby’),” as quoted from ARTL’s website.
Two noteworthy points, from ARTL’s website:
ARTL Timeframe: Our charter gives the founding leaders (directors and officers) twelve years in which to end abortion in America. At that time, if they have not, they are required to turn over ARTL to an entirely new slate of leaders, their leadership coming to an end, either because they have succeeded, or failed. In the fall of 2008, ARTL will host a conference on ending abortion, titled 11 Years Till D Day, and the year after that, 10 Years, then 9 Years, etc., instead of the never-ending, perpetual conventions of NRTL (so far at 35th Annual and counting).
ARTL Salary & Benefits: ARTL’s board members, officers, and spokesmen serve without salary. Ministry workers have every right to receive salaries, but that model has not well served the fight to end “legal” abortion and euthanasia. The pro-life industry has become too comfortable as it receives millions of dollars a month in salaries. As a result, ARTL has broken the mold, with no salary for its leaders, and no retirement benefits.
Read ARTL’s principles here.