(LifeSiteNews) — Former Biden administration White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Sunday attacked Republicans for allegedly seeking to “rebrand” the pro-life movement after the high-profile failure of several pro-life measures in the aftermath of Roe v. Wade’s overturning. The comments come despite the fact that a growing number of states have successfully banned abortion and saved countless babies since the historic Dobbs decision.
On MSNBC’s Inside with Jen Psaki on Sunday, the former Biden administration official referred to a closed-door meeting last week in which several Senate Republicans were presented with results of a poll allegedly suggesting that the term “pro-life” had lost its effectiveness with voters, NBC reported.
“I hate to break it to you, but if you call broccoli ‘candy,’ it’s still just broccoli.”@jrpsaki on new reporting about Republicans seeking a rebrand of the term “pro-life.” pic.twitter.com/sRfCDlefjZ
— Inside with Jen Psaki (@InsideWithPsaki) September 10, 2023
“I hate to break it to you, but if you call broccoli ‘candy,’ it’s still just broccoli,” Psaki said. “If you tie a really nice bow around a lump of coal, it is still coal under there.”
Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Republicans said the discussion was “purely informational” and not meant to set messaging. They also said the poll results showed that lawmakers should be more clear and specific with voters rather than relying on labels.
Republican Sen. Todd Young of Indiana characterized the meeting as focusing on “pro-baby policies,” but denied claims that Republicans were seeking to rebrand the pro-life platform.
He said the term “pro-baby” was something he made up simply “to demonstrate my concern for babies.”
However, the phrase and its connection to the closed-door confab was picked up by mainstream media outlets as evidence that Republicans are scrambling to reframe the effort to protect unborn lives by coming up with a fresh label.
“Facing another major election, the GOP is in a bit of a pickle and they know it,” Psaki asserted. “They’re even meeting behind closed doors to discuss it.”
The former White House spokeswoman highlighted several disappointing losses for the pro-life movement at the state ballot level following the reversal of Roe v. Wade by the U.S. Supreme Court in June 2022, including the rejection of a proposed pro-life amendment to the Kansas state constitution and the recent failure of Ohio’s Issue 1, which would have required a 60 percent supermajority to approve any proposed constitutional amendment as Ohioans prepare to vote on enshrining abortion into their own constitution.
Despite those setbacks however, pro-life lawmakers have been very successful in enacting robust protections for the unborn across the country since last summer.
Since the landmark Dobbs v. Jackson decision overturning Roe, many U.S. states have enacted tough laws protecting the preborn, effectively forcing abortion clinics out of business and saving countless lives. To date, some 15 states have successfully enacted near-total abortion bans. Others have implemented laws restricting abortion at particular stages of gestational development, and some are currently fighting in court to enforce blocked pro-life legislation.
Regardless, Psaki argued that Republicans “are seeking a rebrand” of the pro-life movement, which she claimed is a “product that customers hate.”
She also repeated generic pro-abortion talking points recommending that Republicans stop focusing so much on saving unborn babies from being murdered and instead prioritize food stamps, childcare, and parental leave programs.
However, pro-life advocates are actively involved in ensuring that pregnant women have access to the resources necessary to successfully care for their child or place them in a loving home with adoptive parents. Pro-life pregnancy centers, which vastly outnumber Planned Parenthood abortion facilities in the U.S., provide women experiencing crisis pregnancies with necessary items like formula, strollers, and diapers, as well as emotional resources like counseling.
Speaking to National Review, E.V. Osment, vice president of communications for Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America emphasized the need for “clarity and specificity” in the pro-life position.
“The American people deserve to know exactly where we stand and what limits on abortion we support and how we will serve mothers and their children,” Osment said. “The other side refuses to list even a single limit that they will place on abortion[.]”
According to Osment, “we must contrast our compassionate position with the extreme pro-abortion position used by Democrats.”