Democratic National Chair Tom Perez plans to meet with Democrats for Life of America, advocates who call themselves the “the pro-life voice of the Democratic Party.”
According to The Atlantic, the meeting is being set up upon the request of the group, and comes shortly after Perez said that pro-lifers weren’t welcome in the Democratic Party.
“Every Democrat, like every American, should support a woman’s right to make her own choices about her body and her health,” Perez said. “That is not negotiable. “We must speak up for this principle as loudly as ever and with one voice,” he added.
Perez’s comments came after Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and Deputy DNC Chair Keith Ellison were scheduled to attend a rally for Nebraska Democratic candidate Heath Mello, a self-described “personally pro-life” mayoral candidate for Omaha.
NARAL Pro-Choice America vehemtly criticized the DNC for the decision, saying that its backing of an “anti-choice candidate” was “disappointing” and “politically stupid.”
Mello lost the election.
“As part of that outreach, Perez has spoken with Democratic elected officials and party leaders, and held a meeting earlier this month with women’s groups,” The Atlantic article says. “The effort comes at a time when prominent Democrats are attempting to walk a fine line between affirming their party’s pro-choice platform and suggesting that there is room in the party for pro-life voters and candidates.”
The 2016 Democratic platform stands for access to “safe and legal abortion,” and vows that Democrats will “oppose, and seek to overturn, federal and state laws and policies that impede a woman’s access to abortion.”