By Patrick B. Craine

WASHINGTON, D.C., January 22, 2010 ( – On Friday, the eve of the 37th anniversary of “one of the … darkest days in U.S. history,” in the words of Rep. Jean Schmidt (R-OH), a contingent of pro-life politicians rose in the U.S. House of Representatives to condemn Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision that imposed a “right” to abortion on the country.

Rep. Joe Pitts (R-PA) began, expressing his gratitude to the throngs of pro-life supporters flooding the capital for Friday's March for Life.  The marchers, he said, gather to “mourn the loss” of the 52 million babies killed by abortion in the last 37 years, but also to rejoice over the countless babies saved due to the march and other efforts, such as pregnancy care centers.

“There are … hundreds of lives that may never have been, were it not for those who continue to stand on behalf of the unborn,” he said.

“Abortion really hurts all of us, but I truly believe that it hurts women the most,” explained Rep. Jean Schmidt (R-OH), emphasizing that “it is the woman's privilege to carry that baby inside of her until it is full-term.”

She related the “immediate and devastating” impact of the “horrible, horrible” Roe v. Wade decision, which resulted in a massive and fast rise of abortions in the country.

But she also insisted that “the tide is changing.”  “The reality is that abortion is no longer a part of mainstream medicine, and the vast majority of hospitals in the United States, religious or secular, now choose not to perform elective abortions,” she said.  “Yes, the tide is turning.”

According to Rep. Joseph Cao (R-LA), this year's anniversary of Roe v. Wade has particular significance because the abortion debate has risen to “paramount” importance during the national health care debate.  Pro-life leaders, in fact, have warned that, if successful, Obama's health care initiative could be the largest expansion of abortion in the country since the infamous 1973 decision.

“Abortion is an inhumane perversion in our society, a distorted emphasis on rights to the disregard of individual responsibilities,” said Cao.  “To protect human rights, we have distorted the continuity of human development to portray the human fetus as something less than human, and [who] therefore, can be disposed of.”

“Although this is the week when we mark that terrible decision of 1973, I love this week,” said Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH).  “Thousands and thousands of Americans are going to come to the nation's capital, and they're going to celebrate life.  They know that life is precious, and that in this great country, the greatest nation in history, we should celebrate life, we should understand that life is precious, life is sacred, that it should be protected.”

Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), co-chair of the Congressional Pro-Life Caucus, said that even after his 38 years in the pro-life movement, “I still don't get how … so many seemingly smart, sane, compassionate, and accomplished people – especially in politics – support, promote, and – if President Obama has his way in the pending health care legislation – lavishly fund with public dollars the violent death of unborn children and the wounding of their moms by abortion.”

“Is it really so hard to understand that abortion is violence against children – a pernicious form of child abuse, falsely and aggressively marketed as choice, a human right?” he asked.  “How long will we permit the pro-choice cover-up and the bogus safety claims to misinform, especially in light of the reams of evidence documenting serious injury to women who abort?”

Smith related the story of Dr. Jean Garton, a former abortion proponent whose conversion to the pro-life cause was strongly influenced by the innocent witness of her own child.  Smith explained how Garton was preparing a pro-abortion lecture and her 3-year-old son unexpectedly walked into the room, seeing an image of an aborted baby on the screen.

“Mommy, who broke the baby?” the boy screamed.

“That young child saw the brutality of abortion with unclouded comprehension,” observed Smith.  “That child was unencumbered and unaffected by the deceptively clever and preposterously misleading propaganda dished by the multi-billion dollar pro-choice industry.”

Joining these five Congressmen in their courageous witness to the dignity of life were Rep. Parker Griffith (R-AL), Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE), and Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO).

See the Representatives' speeches on Youtube:

Rep. Chris Smith (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3)
Rep. Joe Pitts
Rep. Jean Schmidt 
Rep. Joseph Cao 
Rep. Jim Jordan
Rep. Parker Griffith
Rep. Jeff Fortenberry
Rep. Todd Akin