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NARAL Prez to Resign: Says Pro-Choice Side Getting Too Old

Posted by on May. 15, 2012 at 12:21 PM
  • 175 Replies
3 moms liked this

 (lifenews) 5/10/12

NARAL’s pro-abortion president, Nancy Keenan, announced today she will resign her position at the end of the year to help the pro-abortion group overcome one of the problems plaguing the pro-abortion movement — a lack of young leaders.

The chairs of the boards of directors of NARAL and its legislative arm announced today that president Nancy Keenan has chosen not to renew her contract, which expires at the end of December this year. Keenan, who took the reins of the organization in December 2004, will continue heading up the organization’s political action arm until a replacement is found.

The board chairs have appointed a search committee, made up of board members from across the country, to begin the process of identifying a new president.

“When Nancy took over as our organization’s leader nearly eight years ago, she brought tremendous energy and a unique perspective as a former elected official from a Western state,” said Janet Denlinger, chair of the board of directors for NARAL.

Keenan said, “Leading NARAL Pro-Choice America for nearly eight years has been a privilege.”

“In building a great organization, there is no single defining action, no single election cycle, nor one leader that makes it successful. It is a combination of the talented and dedicated staff, state affiliates, member activists, and boards. These individuals work every day to protect women’s reproductive rights. I am so very proud to have worked side by side with all of them,” she added.

Keenan said part of her focus is to get younger pro-abortion activists into top leadership roles, at a time when polls are showing the next generation of American leaders is pro-life.

“In the next eight months, I will focus on helping pro-choice candidates win elections,” Keenan said. “In addition, I will work with my colleagues as we prepare to mark the 40th anniversary of the Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade. We have built an innovative initiative to engage and recruit even more members of the Millennial Generation to the pro-choice cause. We did this by listening and learning from younger people about their experiences and ideas for protecting choice in the next 40 years and beyond.”

Emily Buchanan, of the Susan B. Anthony List, told LifeNews that a change at the top doesn’t affect the fact that younger Americans are trending pro-life.

“No change in leadership will change the fact that NARAL and their pro-abortion allies are losing ground. Polls show more and more Americans moving to the pro-life position and state legislatures taking on increasing measures to protect Life. NARAL’s position of abortion for any reason, any time, paid for taxpayers simply does not resonate with the American public,” she said.

Keenan talked with the Washington Post about the need to recruit the younger generation to promote abortion.

In recent years, Keenan has worried about an “intensity gap” on abortion rights among millennials, which the group considers to be the generation of Americans born between 1980 and 1991. While most young, antiabortion voters see abortion as a crucial political issue, NARAL’s own internal research does not find similar passion among abortion-rights supporters. If the pro-choice movement is to successfully defend abortion rights, Keenan contends, it needs more young people in leadership roles, including hers.

“There’s an opportunity for a new and younger leader,” Keenan said during a Wednesday interview in her downtown Washington office. “Roe v. Wade is 40 in January. It’s time for a new leader to come in and, basically, be the person for the next 40 years of protecting reproductive choice.”

A 2010 internal NARAL survey examined the views of young Americans and found a stark “intensity gap” on abortion. Some 51 percent of the under 30 voters who are pro-life call opposing abortion a “very important” voting issue compared with just 26 percent of abortion backers. The poll found a pro-life gap, too, with older voters but it was smaller.

At that time, Keenan talked about the emerging pro-life generation with Newsweek and said her concern is that abortion advocates are dominated by women over the age of 50 and that younger generations aren’t filling the ranks of pro-abortion groups the same way young pro-life advocates are getting involved in the pro-life community.

woohoo

Anecdotally, Keenan related the story of getting off her train in Washington during the weekend of the March for Life, which saw 400,000 pro-life advocates fill the nation’s capital to rally against abortion.

She saw huge numbers of teenagers and young adults that she doesn’t typically see at pro-abortion rallies.

“I just thought, my gosh, they are so young,” Keenan recalled. “There are so many of them, and they are so young.”


 



"How can there be too many children? That is like saying there are too many flowers." - Mother Teresa




 

by on May. 15, 2012 at 12:21 PM
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Replies (1-10):
NWP
by Guerilla Girl on May. 15, 2012 at 12:43 PM
5 moms liked this

Good for her! Her timing is spot on too.

Most of the women in this country are pro-choice. Until now, they have just been passive.

The repugs have done an excellent job of energizing a new generation that was apathetic of what they accepted as their legal rights to step up to the plate and fight to keep them.

I imagine we will see a huge increase of pro-choice people becoming politically active.

Momniscient
by Gold Member on May. 15, 2012 at 12:46 PM

Don't you mean pro abortion? lol.

I agree with you. Pro choice sentiment isn't going anywhere. Or if it is, it's just getting stronger.

Quoting NWP:

Good for her! Her timing is spot on too.

Most of the women in this country are pro-choice. Until now, they have just been passive.

The repugs have done an excellent job of energizing a new generation that was apathetic of what they accepted as their legal rights to step up to the plate and fight to keep them.

I imagine we will see a huge increase of pro-choice people becoming politically active.



GraceHudson
by on May. 15, 2012 at 12:48 PM
Good for her!


imamomzilla
by on May. 15, 2012 at 12:48 PM
6 moms liked this

 The antiquated views are a thing of the past. Modern technology is showing people the truth about abortion and it's UGLY.

Progressive people should move "FORWARD"! LOL

 



KhaysJadie
by Member on May. 15, 2012 at 12:49 PM
5 moms liked this

And thus is part of the problem. Young women don't know what it was like to be unable to have a safe abortion and were either not told or didn't believe the stories of the generation of women ahead of them.This younger generation of women can't fathom the, very real, experience of going to someone who is not qualified to perform medical procedures to have an abortion. Or having unsanitary tools used on them. Or dying of infection. Or beelding to death. Or being unable to go to a hospital because abortion was illegal and women were afraid of going to jail.

I have no problems with other's pro-life opinions, What bothers and concerns me is the extremism that I've seen all too often and the unwillingness to compromise and find a balance. For instance.....

Life starting at conception. How does this balance out with birth control and a woman or couple deciding when and how many children she has?

Medically necessary abortions. What happens when a woman finds herself with an ecoptic pregnancy, a baby that has died inutro, or a badly damaged fetus?

Where does rape and incest fall into all of this?

And here is something that bugs me. What are pro-lifers doing to make society a better place for these babies? Is there a plan to create jobs and a way to provide a living? Is there a plan to provide a support network for women in need who are single? Is there a plan for education reform to offer better opportunities?

Or.......

Is it just "we hate abortion!"

NWP
by Guerilla Girl on May. 15, 2012 at 12:52 PM
1 mom liked this

Yep..It is a silly argument to make. There was no reason for the younger generation to be involved because it is LEGAL! Now that a small, but vocal religious movement has started making headway in this fight, you bet the girls will step up!

Quoting Momniscient:

Don't you mean pro abortion? lol.

I agree with you. Pro choice sentiment isn't going anywhere. Or if it is, it's just getting stronger.

Quoting NWP:

Good for her! Her timing is spot on too.

Most of the women in this country are pro-choice. Until now, they have just been passive.

The repugs have done an excellent job of energizing a new generation that was apathetic of what they accepted as their legal rights to step up to the plate and fight to keep them.

I imagine we will see a huge increase of pro-choice people becoming politically active.



Noodles With Peas

Abaco
by on May. 15, 2012 at 12:53 PM
3 moms liked this

There's hope that young America will step up and get this country turned around and back on track : )  and the old farts will be washed up and out : )

Momniscient
by Gold Member on May. 15, 2012 at 12:53 PM
2 moms liked this

Yup. Look at how strong support for Planned Parenthood has become again.

It's nice.

Quoting NWP:

Yep..It is a silly argument to make. There was no reason for the younger generation to be involved because it is LEGAL! Now that a small, but vocal religious movement has started making headway in this fight, you bet the girls will step up!

Quoting Momniscient:

Don't you mean pro abortion? lol.

I agree with you. Pro choice sentiment isn't going anywhere. Or if it is, it's just getting stronger.

Quoting NWP:

Good for her! Her timing is spot on too.

Most of the women in this country are pro-choice. Until now, they have just been passive.

The repugs have done an excellent job of energizing a new generation that was apathetic of what they accepted as their legal rights to step up to the plate and fight to keep them.

I imagine we will see a huge increase of pro-choice people becoming politically active.





Momniscient
by Gold Member on May. 15, 2012 at 12:55 PM
1 mom liked this


Quoting Abaco:

There's hope that young America will step up and get this country turned around and back on track : )  and the old farts will be washed up and out : )

Back on what track? Biblical marriage? Hope those concubines and slaves work out for you. Can't wait until you don't have a voice anymore.


bluespagan
by on May. 15, 2012 at 1:01 PM
1 mom liked this

 It is Pro-Choice not Pro-abortion first off.

And BTW, all the news sources I have read (you know those handy non bias ones not ones from sites like Lifenews) says this.  She is stepping down to reinvigorate the pro-choice movement and get younger people into roles such as hers.  I see nothing wrong with that. 

The 60-year-old Keenan said she is leaving out of concern for the future of the pro-choice movement — and thinks she could be holding it back.
Nancy Keenan will retire as president of NARAL Pro-Choice America at the end of the year. (Sarah L. Voisin - WASHINGTON POST)
In recent years, Keenan has worried about an “intensity gap” on abortion rights among millennials, which the group considers to be the generation of Americans born between 1980 and 1991. While most young, antiabortion voters see abortion as a crucial political issue, NARAL’s own internal research does not find similar passion among abortion-rights supporters. If the pro-choice movement is to successfully defend abortion rights, Keenan contends, it needs more young people in leadership roles, including hers.

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