DALLAS, June 28, 2013 ( – Texas Gov. Rick Perry wowed the pro-life crowd at the National Right to Life Committee’s annual convention in Dallas on Thursday with a stirring call to defend the right to life despite the abortion lobby’s scorn.

“Until the day Roe v. Wade is nothing but a shameful footnote in our nation's history books, we won't give up the good fight,” he said.

The former Republican presidential candidate insisted there is “no higher calling” than defending the right to life, saying it’s “the least we could do” to honor the 50 million children robbed of life in America through abortion since Roe v. Wade in 1973.


The governor noted that America’s founding fathers listed the right to life first in the Declaration of Independence, ”ahead of liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

“As our forefathers correctly understood, life is nothing less than a gift from God, and defending that right is a calling worthy of our best,” he said. “That's why we work so hard to protect all of God's children. There is no higher calling, or more basic standard than that.”

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He spoke only a day after calling a special session of the Texas legislature to begin July 1 in order to pass a sweeping pro-life bill that pro-abortion protesters had blocked in the previous session by shouting down the Senate floor in the final minutes.

“I wish I could say we were nearing the end of our struggle, but the events of the last few days only underscore that we face continued challenges,” he said. “I am proud of each one of you for standing up for life. In doing so, you reap the scorn of the abortion lobby, and the disdain of the forces of secularism. But it is a just cause…an important calling. And it's the least we could do in memory of the 50 million who have been robbed of their lives.”

“And just remember: the louder the opposition screams, the more we know we're doing something right,” he added.

The bill, named SB 5 in the previous session, requires abortion facilities to be brought up to par with other outpatient surgical centers, and for abortionists to maintain admitting privileges at local hospitals. It also bans all abortions after 20 weeks without exceptions. Currently, 37 out of Texas’s 42 abortion facilities fail to meet the bill’s standards.

Gov. Perry defended the bill, saying it “makes zero sense that the second most-common surgical procedure in the United States is done at clinics that are not held to the same standards as other surgical facilities.”

“If the abortion industry decides that the expense of running clean, safe facilities outweighs the money they can make…that's entirely their decision,” he continued. “We've seen far too many horror stories, coming out of Philadelphia and even Houston, about unsafe, unsanitary abortion mills that turn a profit by preying on women in desperate circumstances and the gruesome nature of the lives lost there, mothers and children alike.”

“We are under no obligation to make things easier for abortion providers,” he added.

The governor insisted that abortion is not a partisan issue, but a “human rights issue” in defense of America’s “most vulnerable citizens.” The 50 million children who have lost their lives to abortion in America is a “scar on our national conscience,” he said.

Find the full text of Gov. Perry's address at his website.