By Patrick B. McGuigan
The Oklahoma Pro-Life Media Coalition sponsored a 2010 Legislators’ Luncheon at the Fourth Floor Rotunda of the State Capitol on Thursday (February 25). Keynote speaker Valeska Littlefield sketched her journey from a youthful abortion, through subsequent regret and an ultimate view opposed to abortion and committed to providing alternatives.
In her speech, Littlefield gave an overview of challenges now facing groups offering abortion alternatives, saying she is concerned over new restrictions on free speech in some states, and proposed new laws. Littlefield told legislators she is “privileged my life revolves around this issue, and that I’m able to work on it in support of the unborn and their mothers.”
Oklahoma City Democratic state Rep. Rebecca Hamilton, one of several legislators pushing anti-abortion measures who joined the observance, introduced Littlefield. Speaker of the House Chris Benge of Tulsa and President Pro Tem Glenn Coffee of Oklahoma City, both Republicans, welcomed members of the Coalition to the Capitol.
Mike Jestes of Oklahoma Family Policy Council served as spokesman for the coalition, and also was moderator for the day’s proceedings. Tony Lauinger of Oklahomans for Life, gave a generally optimistic overview and briefing of the status of bills before the Legislature to limit abortions. Many of the measures being pushed this year are in response to judicial rulings that prior pro-life bills had violated “single subject” provisions. Although advocates have disagree with the judicial rulings, many of the bills now working their way through the process are “one-by-one” measures designed to pass legal scrutiny.
Legislators who attended the luncheon included Pam Peterson, Paul Wesselhoft, Mike Reynolds, Purcy Walker, John Ford, Sally Kern, Sue Tibbs, Ann Coody, Mark McCullough, Steve Martin, R.C. Pruett, Lewis Moore, Ron Justice, Leslie Osborn, Gus Blackwell, Lisa Billy, Lee Denny, Dennis Johnson, Gary Stanislawski and Jason Murphey.
Sponsors of the event included Oklahoma Family Policy Council, Bott Radio Network, KXOJ radio, KCFO Radio, the House 89.7, KSBI-TV 52, KWHG 47, The Gospel Station Network, The Tulsa Beacon, OKC-Metro Voice, The Baptist Messenger and the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, The Sooner Catholic, Oklahoma Family Policy Council, BirthChoice of Oklahoma, Pregnancy Resource Network, Quail Springs Baptist Church, Deaconess Pregnancy & Adoption Services, Americans United for Life, Hope Pregnancy Centers, and Oklahomans for Life.