Starkey Road Baptist Church
1:54 P.M. EDT
THE VICE PRESIDENT: Well, hello, Florida. (Applause.) Thank you so much for that wonderful welcome. To my friend Marilyn Musgrave and to Deputy Secretary Eric Hargan; to state representative and future Speaker of the Florida State House Chris Sprowls — (applause); and to Pastor and Stephanie Parker here at Starkey Baptist Church, it is great to be back in church and great to be among so many champions for life. (Applause.)
And it’s a joy to be here with the Susan B. Anthony List. Founded in 1993, now a network of more than 800,000 Americans, SBA is the most effective pro-life grassroots organization in America. (Applause.)
But to all the great friends who have come out today, who have labored in the cause of life all across the Sunshine State, I just, first and foremost, want to say thank you. Thank you for what you have done for life. Thank you for what you have done for the great movement of the sanctity of life in this country and the unborn. It is wonderful to be among friends. Thank you for coming out. (Applause.)
And speaking of friends of mine, allow me to begin by bringing greetings from another friend of mine — (laughter) — a man who loves the State of Florida and a man who is the most pro-life President in American history. I bring greetings from the 45th President of the United States, President Donald Trump. (Applause.)
It really is good to be with all of you today, as we approach a time for choosing for the American people. But as we gather today, I don’t have to tell people here in Florida that we’re also living in a time of testing. And here in Florida and all across America, we have faced challenges in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic like many of us have never seen in our lifetime.
And I must tell you: I’m proud to serve alongside a President who has put the health of America first from day one. And we are grateful for the leadership of Governor Ron DeSantis all across the State of Florida. (Applause.)
And as I heard yesterday at the White House Coronavirus Task Force meeting, because of the Governor’s leadership and the cooperation of the people of Florida, we’re seeing encouraging trends all across the State of Florida and all across the Sun Belt. And I want to commend each and every one of you — the role you’re playing in putting the health of your neighbors and your family members and people you don’t even know first.
And I’ll make you a promise on behalf of the President and our entire team in Washington: We’re going to continue to bring the full resources of the federal government to bear to make sure the people of this community and this state have the testing, the medical supplies, and we’ll continue to develop medicines and vaccines until we put the coronavirus in the past and open up Florida and America bigger and better than ever before. (Applause.)
But President Trump wanted me to be here with you today not just to thank you for your support, for your stand for life, for your compassion for the women and children of America, but because of the difference that each one of you have made.
Because of the work that you have done, we now have a pro-life champion in the White House. We have pro-life leaders in state houses across the country, a pro-life majority in the United States Senate, and we have principled jurists in record numbers in our courts across the land. Because of what you’ve done, life is winning in America. (Applause.)
The Declaration of Independence reads that we — that we held certain “truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, and that they are endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable Rights, and among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
Those words changed history, and they also put life at the center of the American experiment. And under this President, I promise you, we’re going to continue to work every day to put the right to life back at the center of American law. (Applause.)
Forty-seven years ago, the Supreme Court of the United States turned its back on that foundational right. And today, these basic truths are still under siege and still under threat. The progress that we have made is, in every sense — every sense at risk as we gather here today.
I mean, the truth is that Joe Biden, the Democratic Party, and the radical left would undo all the progress that we’ve made in the cause of life. And what a contrast it’s been of the progress of life under this administration.
From the first day he took office, President Trump has been standing without apology for the sanctity of human life. (Applause.) It would be just after we were office a few days that the President reinstituted the Mexico City policy, making sure no taxpayer dollars would ever go to promote or provide abortion around the world, and then he expanded it a year later. (Applause.)
And President Trump became the first President in American history to address the March for Life in person on the National Mall. (Applause.)
In our first year in office, the President took executive action to end the assault on the conscience rights of a group of nuns, known as a Little Sisters of the Poor.
And we appointed justices to the Supreme Court who were part of a seven-to-two majority that ended the assault on the Little Sisters of the Poor’s pro-life convictions once and for all. (Applause.)
In fact, President Trump has appointed more conservatives to our courts of appeals than any President in American history. All told, 200 conservative judges appointed to our courts at every level. And I’m here to tell you, they’re all principled conservatives who will uphold all the God-given liberties enshrined in our Constitution. (Applause.)
But I must tell you — I must tell you, one of the greatest privileges I’ve had as your Vice President was, in my role as President of the Senate, I was able to cast the tiebreaking vote on a bill that allowed states across the country to defund Planned Parenthood, and President Donald Trump signed it into law. (Applause.)
By contrast, Joe Biden and the Democratic Party would take America in the opposite direction. After years of his party endorsing or tolerating what had come to be known over the decades as the Hyde Amendment, which prevented taxpayer dollars from being used to support abortion, now Joe Biden and the Democratic Party have literally abandoned their support for the Hyde Amendment and have pledged to use taxpayer dollars to fund abortion at home and abroad.
Joe Biden and the Democratic Party also would not defund the largest abortion provider in America, but they plan — they plan to increase funding for Planned Parenthood at unprecedented levels. And Joe Biden in the Democratic Party support late-term abortion. His party, in the Senate, actually blocked a bill that would protect children that were born after failed abortions. They blocked the Born-Alive Infant Protection Act.
And make no mistake about it: Joe Biden would appoint activist judges to our courts who would legislate from the bench and trample — trample on our most cherished liberties.
Now more than ever, pro-life Americans need to let our voice be heard and stand for life. (Applause.) In cities and states and places of worship all across this country, you need to speak out. You need to become involved. The SBA List is an organization that spans the entire nation, and all of you already participate.
But for any looking on, this is no time to be silent. And make no mistake about it, the radical left wants to silence pro-life on Americans.
Just recently, we saw the arrest of Students for Life of America. A group of students were arrested for writing “Black Preborn Lives Matter” outside a D.C. Planned Parenthood clinic. I mean, the radical left celebrates those who defend abortion, but they would prosecute those who stand for life. We’ve even seen Democrat-led legislators in this country stand up and cheer with the passage of bills that provide for late-term abortion. And one Democrat governor actually openly defended infanticide.
The choice could not be more clear. And I want to make you a promise: This President, this Vice President, and this administration will always stand up for the freedom of speech of every American, and we will always stand for life. (Applause.)
As the Bible admonishes us, we are to — and I quote — “speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves.” And so the people in this movement have done every day since that day 47 years ago. And because you’ve spoken up, because you stood up, because you’ve stood with those men and women who’ve stood for life in the public square: Life is winning in America.
From the White House to courthouses, the U.S. Senate, and in conservative legislatures across the country, the work of SBA has never been more important. We’ve made great progress. And I think life is winning because of the activism that you all are a part of in this country.
But I also believe life is winning because of the compassion and love that have been shown to women facing crisis pregnancies all across this country now for decades. The pro-life movement is defined by generosity, compassion, and love for women and unborn children. (Applause.)
And you need look no further than ministries across the country, crisis pregnancy centers, and care centers that are ministering to the needs of women in crisis pregnancies. It’s truly inspiring.
I stopped by one on my way here today, once I landed here in Florida. It’s a clinic called “A Woman’s Place.” You know, the pro-life movement doesn’t just talk the talk, you walk the walk. And I saw a wonderful clinic and heard about all the volunteers that stepped forward along with registered nurses and healthcare professionals in places, literally, every day, bustling with people ready to not just stand for life, stand with women facing the most difficult circumstances in their lives.
A Woman’s Place, I learned, is part of New Life Solutions. It’s a ministry that’s been here in Pinellas and Hillsborough counties for 35 years, and their compassionate work has saved 10,000 babies’ lives. (Applause.)
And I like giving credit for credit, where credit is due. So, would you all mind joining me in thanking Board Chairman Kathy Arrington and the New Life Solutions team that are here? Would you stand, Kathy and the New Life Solutions team? Let’s show them how much we appreciate the way they put feet on their faith every day. (Applause.)
What a great group. And thanks to your commitment, for 35 years, in this community and in cities and towns all across America, I’m proud to report to you that there are now far more pregnancy care centers in America than abortion clinics. That is progress. (Applause.) And life is winning in America because of all of you.
In fact, I saw that work firsthand today. We had a few minutes to meet a woman whose life was changed when she visited — when she visited A Woman’s Place. Kia told me she was 40 years old, pregnant, and a single mom. She already had a little boy in the home, and she didn’t think — she didn’t think she was able to become a mother again. She picked up the phone and she scheduled an appointment at Planned Parenthood, but before she went, she said she heard about a clinic that offered free sonograms. So she went. And for the first time, in that little room where I was just standing, she caught a glimpse of her little boy, and Kia chose life. (Applause.)
She said, and I quote, “From the moment that I saw him, I knew I made the right choice.” And she said, “If I hadn’t found A Woman’s Place and the wonderful women there, I probably would have made a different choice.”
And I met little Ollie today. He was a healthy and exuberant little boy who will turn one year old next week. (Applause.)
That’s the difference this movement has made, one life at a time, one family at a time. And that’s the difference SBA List makes and the difference everyone working in this movement has made in the lives of women and children all across this country.
And I just really wanted to come by to say thank you and urge you on. Life is winning in America, I truly do believe, because of that compassion, that care, and that love.
There may have been those in 1973 that thought that this movement would someday fade out. But the American people cherish all our God-given liberties. The American people cherish the right to life. And we will stand in this movement until we restore the right to life to the center of American law. I believe it with all my heart. (Applause.)
So from the White House to the courthouse to care centers, life is winning in America. But I — it’s winning in one other way that I think is worth remembering. I think life is winning hearts and minds in the rising generation. Young people today are rightly seen, by the tens of thousands on our National Mall, as a new pro-life generation, and so they are. (Applause.)
The rising generation is more pro-life than ever before. Young Americans are embracing the sanctity of life in record numbers — more and more every day.
And I think that’s because they’ve heard the message of people like all of you and groups like SBA. They’ve heard from leaders in pulpits and in public office around the country. I think they’re also been moved — they’ve been moved by the compassion that they’ve seen in places like A Woman’s Place.
But I also believe that life is winning in the rising generation because of the quiet counsels that are taking place between mothers and daughters, between grandmothers and granddaughters. I think the truth about abortion is being told, and this new generation is choosing life.
As one pro-life advocate recently wrote in her column in the Washington Times, and I quote, “If our generation is to be concerned with the disenfranchised, [with] the marginalized, [with] the oppressed and the outsider, the unborn child fits all these descriptions.” (Applause.) That’s — that is a voice in the rising generation. And it’s also the voice of my daughter Charlotte — Charlotte Pence Bond. I couldn’t be more proud of your stand for life in this rising generation. (Applause.) So proud of you.
So life is winning in America. And as we continue to work as a nation to emerge from the heartbreaking days through which we have passed — days that have seen more than 150,000 families suffer loss — as we continue to work every day to bring our nation through this time of testing, we are coming to a time for choosing. And the — and it’s never been more important to keep fighting for life, to keep caring, to keep reaching out with compassion, and to keep standing with all the men and women who stand for life in the public square.
As President Trump said not long ago, quote, “Every person is worth protecting…Every human soul is divine, and every human life — born and unborn — is made in the holy image of Almighty God.” (Applause.)
And I promise you, this President and I will stand for life. We’ll stand with women in crisis pregnancies. And we’ll continue to deliver on the promises that we’ve made not just to the people of a movement or a cause, but to the highest ideals of our nation, including the unalienable right to life.
And in the days ahead, as you labor in this movement, remember: I believe with all my heart that the men and women of the pro-life movement do not fight alone. He who said, “Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you,” fights with you. (Applause.)
And when we make the cause of the author of life our cause, we make His work on this Earth our own, and that means life wins. (Applause.)
So life is winning in America, men and women of SBA and of this movement, but our work is not done yet. Alexis de Tocqueville is attributed to have said, “America is great because America is good.” If America ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.
But I truly believe, with your continued support, with your dedication to the cause of life, we’ll build on the extraordinary progress we’ve made these last three and a half years. We’ll continue to see pro-life men and women of principle elected and reelected from the White House to the statehouse. And the day will come when we restore the right of life to the center of American law, and we will make America great again. (Applause.)
Thank you very much. God bless you for all you do. And God bless America.
2:18 P.M. EDT