Pro-life bill fails but Loudon perseveres
By Lee Warren
May 17, 2005
JEFFERSON CITY — For seven years Sen. John Loudon, R-Ballwin, has fought for what has come to be known as Senate Bill 2—the comprehensive pro-life legislation that failed to pass the Missouri General Assembly, only to have Gov. Matt Blunt, who says that he shares Loudon’s pro-life position, call a special session Sept. 14 in an attempt to get abortion legislation passed.
Session after session, Loudon, an evangelical senator and home school father, has endured filibusters, heated opposition from his peers, Planned Parenthood, and one form of defeat after another. On May 13, his bill suffered the ultimate humiliation—a death blow delivered by his peers, the vast majority of whom are pro-life.
But even though he lost the battle May 13, Loudon knows that if he can somehow run the gauntlet of the politics of the Senate, with Sen. Delbert Scott, R-Lowry City now serving as the point man for the special session, the longstanding Loudon language can still win the war. Assuming pro-life Republicans can work together, victory is but one signature away – the promised action that is still expected to take place this year through the pen of Blunt, who wants to sign a bill into law.
The word “politician” has become a euphemism for corruption in recent generations. America has certainly had her share of corrupt politicians, but following in the footsteps of King Hezekiah and King Josiah, some Christians feel called to run for office to restore and maintain public order. They humbly set their faces towards heaven and resolve to stand for truth and righteousness no matter what anybody else is doing. Sen. Loudon, a churchman with Missouri Baptist leanings, is one such politician.
Consuming precious time that could have been applied to his still-pending pro-life bill May 12, Loudon led a successful Senate filibuster that forced the sponsor of House Bill 592, Sen. Jon Dolan, R-Lake St. Louis, to give up a bid to repeal the state law limiting casino losses to $500 every two hours.
Loudon appeared trapped in a dilemma. By choosing to filibuster the gambling bill, he could have been placing his seven-year dream in jeopardy. Indeed, he likely was, but Loudon refused to buckle. Instead, he stood firmly within his Christian worldview, putting principle ahead of personal gain. In the process, he lost his pro-life bill but won the respect of believers in Missouri.
“That’s why we need more Christians in politics,” said Rodney Albert, chairman of the Missouri Baptist Convention’s Christian Life Commission and pastor of Hallsville Baptist Church. “Senator Loudon has been captured by truth—the truth that abortion is wrong and that secretly transporting young teenage girls across state lines to evade parental involvement is a supreme evil. Fortunately, he’s the kind of politician who doesn’t easily let go of truth.”
Besides praising Sen. Loudon for his strong and courageous stand regarding SB 2, Albert said Rep. Jane Cunningham, R-Chesterfield, deserves credit for sponsoring a companion measure, House Bill 100, that also came close to passing.
Albert said there is a direct correlation between the righteous actions of politicians like Sen. Loudon and Rep. Cunningham and the blessings of God upon our nation. He also said the converse is true.
“America will either be governed by devout secularists with a naturalistic worldview or by people who rule in the fear of God,” Albert said. “I prefer the latter because that means America can benefit from God’s blessings. I desire His blessings, not His curses.
“I draw my theology from places like Daniel 2:21 that says God removes kings and raises them up. So I don’t think we are at the mercy of politicians or national parties and whether they are moral or not. I think we’re at the mercy of God. Godly politicians are obviously His ‘ministers’ because they rule and lead in the direction of biblical morality. They seek to fashion society the way God has designed. But immoral and godless politicians are His ‘ministers’ too, in that they prepare the way of judgment. They arouse the Divine wrath.”
Loudon fought the gambling industry alongside a pair of pro-life Democrats, Sen. Victor Callahan, D-Independence, and Sen. Tim Green, D-St. Louis. In that sense, the victory to retain the loss limit was bipartisan. Albert said that God, who transcends political parties, is seeking social justice in His jurisdiction.
“In order to have a just and orderly society that lives in the shadow of God’s blessing, we must have politicians with a God-honoring, biblically-rooted worldview,” Albert said.