CNA Staff, Dec 14, 2020 / 03:30 pm (CNA).- A coalition of Black Christian ministers have criticized Georgia Senate candidate Raphael Warnock for his support for abortion. In addition to running as a Democrat, Warnock is a senior pastor at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta.
Warnock is running in a run-off for one of the two vacant U.S. Senate seats in Georgia, facing Republican Kelly Loeffler in a special election to fill the seat of Johnny Isakson, who resigned due to health in 2019.
In an open letter to Warnock sent Dec. 11, more than 25 Black Christian ministers, most of them from Georgia, said they “feel compelled to confront your most recent statements concerning abortion.”
“Your open advocacy of abortion is a scandal to the faith and to the Black community,” the ministers wrote to Warnock.
In November, Warnock tweeted that he is a “pro-choice pastor” and that “a hospital room is way too small for a woman, her doctor, and the United States government.”
He has also said that abortion is “consistent with” his beliefs as a Christian minister, and abortion is a decision that is “between [a woman] and her doctor and her minister.”
On Nov. 17, Warnock tweeted “I will always fight for reproductive justice.”
In response, Black pro-life advocate Benjamin Watson tweeted “Pastor, equal access to kill a son or daughter is NOT justice.”
In their open letter, the ministers said that Warnock’s statements “represent grave errors of judgment and a lapse in pastoral responsibility, and we entreat you to reconsider them.”
“As a Christian pastor and as a Black leader, you have a duty to denounce the evil of abortion, which kills a disproportionate number of Black children,” they said.
Both Loeffler and Warnock received the most votes out of a field of candidates in November but neither candidate received 50%; by rule, the race went to a runoff election which will be held on Jan. 5.
The race is one of two special elections being held on Jan. 5, the other being for Georgia’s other Senate seat; the candidates vying for that seat are Sen. David Perdue (R) and Democrat John Ossoff.
After the Dec. 6 debate between Loeffler and Warnock, where the pastor defended his pro-abortion views, the group Susan B. Anthony List called his “radical” position on the issue “disturbing and far outside the American mainstream.”
In their open letter Friday, the ministers wrote to Warnock that “couching abortion in the language of ‘reproductive justice’ may be savvy marketing, but killing an innocent human life has nothing to do either with reproduction or with justice.”
“Do American adults really need another public voice urging them to put their own short-term desires ahead of the needs of their children?”
“Can you in good conscience defend abortion, knowing that abortion kills 474 Black babies for every 1000 live births? Abortion decimates Black communities, disrupts Black families and inflicts untold harm on Black women,” they said.
“Unborn Black, brown and white lives are so much more than clumps of cells, burdensome inconveniences, or health problems. They are sacred human persons endowed by God with inalienable dignity and worth,” the ministers wrote.