Richard Pierard thinks that anti-abortion evangelicals have badly overplayed their hand with the "pro-life" issue:
Finally, evangelicals have to get off the abortion issue. The electoral defeat of several hard-liners should be a wake-up call that people are getting weary of the increasingly extreme positions that the more vocally Christian politicians are taking on the issue. The attempts to secure the enactment of “personhood” measures, and the rejection of abortion in cases of rape or to save the life of the mother, are examples of the latest moves in this direction. Besides, who takes seriously their stress on the “right to life” while they reject gun control for assault weapons, the very real threat of global climate change, and support the death penalty and ongoing war in Afghanistan?
Besides, who takes seriously their stress on the “right to life” while they reject gun control for assault weapons, the very real threat of global climate change, and support the death penalty and ongoing war in Afghanistan: this is pretty much what many of us have long said about many "pro-life" Catholics whose pro-life commitment has nothing at all to do with any kind of life outside the womb.
Since "pro-life" politics isn't in any meaningful sense at all about life issues for many of its Catholic and evangelical adherents: it's about bashing liberals over the head and controlling women. And, increasingly, for evangelicals, it's about "lying for the Lord," as Fred Clark notes recently.
Lying for the Lord by claiming that drugs which aren't abortifacients are, in fact, abortifacients--in precisely the same way that the U.S. Catholic bishops continue to lie for the Lord with their claim that the healthcare guidelines of the Affordable Care Act require Catholics to pay for provision of abortifacients.
The religious right alliance of evangelicals and the Catholic bishops has been deeply destructive for both wings of the coalition, and has resulted in the self-marginalization of both conservative evangelicals and Catholic leaders in the American public square. A marginalization very much deserved, if the best either group has to offer when it makes a moral pitch to the public square is a pack of lies, or failing that, raw attempts to cudgel and bully the body politic in the name of defending "religious freedom" . . . .