Senator Steve King’s Speech

January 22, 2001


Madam President, Ladies and gentlemen of the Senate, Iowans, I rise
before you today as a servant to Iowans and to my country.  I am
intensely aware of the recent events in Washington, D.C. which
inaugurated the 43rd President of these United States.

I am mindful of the historical changes in our Chief Executive Office and
of the philosophical "trickle down" of values to the chambers of state
and local governments and to the people.

The historic and peaceful transfer of power came just 5 days after we
celebrated the life, labors, and sacrifice of the great leader the
Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr..

Reverend King was a successor in the struggle for freedom and justice
for the powerless to another great American leader, the 16th President
of the United States, Abraham Lincoln, whose blood flows in my veins.

Each of us feel a sense of kinship with the legacy of these two great
Each of us understand the historical changes which were brought about by
the courageous leadership and sacrifices of these two great men.

Each of us bear the burden of duty to our fellow Iowans to carry on the
work of Lincoln and King, who were martyred in the cause of justice for
the powerless.

Senators, today I call upon your sense of duty, conscience, and justice
to remember our obligation to carry on the legacy of Lincoln and King
and to pause and remember that today we have a very solemn occasion to
Today is the 22nd day of January and the 28th anniversary of the most
infamous United States Supreme Court decision since Dred Scott.

You may remember the 1857 Dred Scott decision which ruled that no black
could claim United States citizenship and that slavery could not be
prohibited in the territories by Congress.

That decision was decided by a vote of 7-2 as was the 1973 Roe v. Wade
decision which established a pregnant female’s right to terminate the
life of her unborn child and established that neither Congress nor the
states could prohibit abortion.

Roe v. Wade is 28 years old today.  Are we any closer to justice for the
powerless?  Why do we deny simple inarguable principles?

Our Declaration of Independence, the very foundation of our beliefs
which are the spirit of this great nation, clearly states, "we are
endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights and that among
these rights are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."

Ladies and gentlemen of the Senate, these rights are not granted by the
government and certainly not by the courts to the people.

These rights are unalienable.  They are given to us by God as he passed
the lamp of liberty to our Founders who, in turn, have passed it on to
us, each citizen of this great nation.

Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  Not the other way around.

Each right is dependent upon the previous right.  Life is paramount.

All human life is sacred in all of its forms.

No person’s liberty can morally be gained at the expense of another’s
life, just as no one’s pursuit of happiness can be at the expense of
anyone’s liberty or life.

Such a simple concept and so little understood….. first life, then
liberty, then the pursuit of happiness.

"Abortion should be both safe and rare."  Few of us would disagree with
that common statement from the pro-choice side of the discussion.

Yet the actions of pro-choice leadership portray the opposite.

Their actions would lead one to believe that pro-choice leaders want
abortion to be both safe and so common as to have no moral implications
whatsoever as if we were dealing with a piece of tissue rather that an
innocent human being.

"More Iowans, younger Iowans, and better paid Iowans."

Is there anyone who doesn’t recognize that phrase?

I heartily endorse the governor’s words and ask that he follow with
positive action.

Last year Governor Vilsack vetoed  the "Woman’s Right to Know" bill
which would have saved as many as 600 very young Iowans.

These children were aborted mostly because they were inconvenient but
not because they were unwanted or unplanned.

"Every child should be both planned and wanted."  Do you recognize those
words?  They are a new criterion for the next generation’s "pro-choice"
right to life.

The message is, if you aren’t planned, you aren’t wanted and if you are
brought into the world without the prequalifications and good fortune of
being planned and wanted, you had no right to be born.

A very selective process, ladies and gentlemen.

Most of us would not enjoy the gift of life if we had been required to
meet that standard, the standard for the next generation.

Fortunately, all innocent unborn children are both planned and wanted.

It has been long held and never logically refuted that every child is
planned by God.

Every child is wanted by competing couples who are not blessed with
their own natural born children.

Ladies and gentlemen of the Senate, there is a waiting list so long that
Iowans routinely fly to China or Russia to get into a shorter line to
adopt children.

The demand for children is so great that seven Iowa hospitals will stop
issuing birth announcements in an effort to prevent the abduction of

About 2400 years ago, Hippocrates wrote the famous Hippocratic Oath for

It states in part, "I will give no deadly medicines to anyone if asked,
nor suggest any such counsel; and in a like manner, I will not give to a
woman a pessary to produce abortion."

The sanctity of life ethic was embodied in the Oath taken by physicians.

It has been dropped from use in medical schools only twice in modern

With the exception of the Third Reich and Roe v. Wade, condemnation of
abortion has been "an almost absolute value in history."

And so today we focus our legislative energies on workforce development.

We need something like 250,000 new Iowans in our workforce within the
next several years.

Almost every state is in the same condition.

Our governor proposes that we recruit ex-patriot Iowans, retain our own
children, recruit from other states, and become the Ellis Island of
midwestern immigration.

I am concerned about the quality of immigrants that we might get if we
suspend the rules, but for the most part, I don’t disagree with the

I will add, though, one very effective and significant element.

I call it the "Grow Your Own Plan." We need more babies in Iowa!

Tax policies that discourage conception and court decisions and
gubernatorial vetoes that deny life are anathema to our economic

If we are going to have "more Iowans, younger Iowans, and better paid
Iowans", the very best plan is to get them born.

Give them a chance at the right to life.

If we had done so, as a nation for the past 28 years, there would have
been more than enough young Iowans eager to become better paid Iowans,
many of whom would have started their own families by now.

What price has our nation paid for Roe v. Wade?

Most estimates fall in the area of  39 million babies.

39 million babies tossed onto the scales of justice which weighs against
the conscience and soul of this nation.

Over 39 million…  39 million little pairs of shoes.

39 million kids in our schools.  39 million bicycles.

39 million hugs and kisses goodnight, every night.

39 million who will never fall in love or have children of their own or
reach for their dreams.

39 million innocent souls who will never realize what might have been.
39 million who were inconvenient at the time.

How many Einsteins?   How many Lincolns?  How many Doctor Kings?

39 million  of the most innocent and powerless have suffered this

39 million innocent souls weighing against the soul of a nation.

Is liberty so sweet as to be purchased at the price of the soul of our

The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, "A time comes when
silence is betrayal."