Last modified on June 15, 2022, at 20:05


See also: Abortion Betrayals

A PLINO politician, which stands for "Pro-Life In Name Only," is a politician who campaigns and is elected by claiming to be pro-life, but then quietly obstructs the passage of pro-life laws or otherwise fails to pass them. Examples would include committee chairmen who fail to schedule hearings on a pro-life bill, or leaders of legislative bodies who fail to call for a floor vote.

Politician Claim Reality
Senator Joe Donnelly (D-IN) Claims to be "pro-life" and claims he opposes taxpayer funding of abortions.[1] Voted against defunding Planned Parenthood, also voted to force states to fund Planned Parenthood, and voted for the pro-abortion ObamaCare.[1]
Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) Claims to be pro-life,[2] can point to House votes as evidence.[3] Supports abortion in cases of rape and incest.[2] Also, in November 2017, Flake endorsed Democrat Doug Jones, who takes very left-wing positions (even by national standards) on issues such as abortion, homosexuality, religious liberty, and gun control, over conservative Judge Roy Moore for Alabama Senator.[4] On December 5, 2017, Flake even wrote a check to the left-wing Democrat.[5] Also, as of December 2017, Flake's Senate website does not even have a page describing his positions on abortion.[6]
Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) Claims to be pro-life in a socially conservative state. On March 30, 2017, Manchin voted against eliminating an Obama-era regulation that would have prohibited states from blocking Planned Parenthood funds.[7] In April 2017, he endorsed Planned Parenthood, which funds abortions, the legalized murder of the unborn, by holding up a sign with a Planned Parenthood official stating "I stand with Planned Parenthood."[8][9][10][11][12] In June 2018, Manchin warned President Trump against nominating a Supreme Court justice opposed to the Roe v. Wade ruling that legalized abortion federally.[13] In October 2018, Manchin announced that he would oppose a West Virginia referendum to end a pro-life referendum to end taxpayer-funding of abortion in the state.[14] Despite claiming to be pro-life, he gave a vague answer on his views on abortion in an October 2018 debate.[15]
Governor Earl Ray Tomblin (D-WV) Claims to be pro-life in a socially conservative state. Twice vetoed a bill, in 2014 and 2015, that would have banned all abortions after the 20th week of pregnancy, citing "constitutionality issues".[16][17] The second time, the West Virginia legislature, which was GOP-controlled, overrode the veto, ultimately making the bill law.[18]
Senator Bob Casey, Jr. (D-PA) Claims to be pro-life as his father was when he was Governor of Pennsylvania Insists on funding Planned Parenthood, the biggest provider of abortion. Voting record in the Senate has been solidly pro-abortion, and he scored a 100% rating by the pro-abort lobby NARAL in 2016 and 2017.[19] Openly voted for the pro-abort Women's Health "Protection" Act[20]
Jon Brunning, candidate for Senate (R-NE) Claims to be pro-life, and arranged for an endorsement by an ineffective pro-life group Failed to defend an important pro-life bill in court, and instead gave Planned Parenthood virtually everything it wanted in a settlement, forcing the state to pay more than $110,000 to Planned Parenthood
Governor Bobby Jindal (R-LA) Says he's pro-life and has ambitions for higher office Has failed to appeal an important decision in favor of the abortion industry
Kirk Adams, congressional candidate (R-AZ) Says he's pro-life As the Arizona Speaker of the House, he refused to allow a floor vote on a simple bill (SB 1095) that has worked well in Missouri for more than five years to protect against harms from abortion. Instead, Adams hastily adjourned for the year on April 20, 2011 without passing any significant pro-life legislation, despite having an overwhelmingly pro-life majority
Governor Robert McDonnell (R-VA) Says he's pro-life and has ambitions for higher office Engineered the removal of a requirement for a transvaginal ultrasound before a women could have an abortion from a bill that was ultimately enacted.
Governor Chris Christie (R-NJ) Says he's pro-life and has ambitions for higher office Has done little to prevent abortions in his state; New Jersey continues to have one of the highest abortion rates in the nation.
Gabriel Gomez, candidate for Senate (R-MA) Claimed the be a "proud Catholic, and pro-life" Said that Roe v. Wade is "settled law" and that he would oppose additional abortion restrictions

Other Examples

Many state politicians in Georgia were elected during the 2010 Midterm Elections by claiming to be pro-life, yet it did not pass a single pro-life law before adjourning for the year in 2011. This occurred despite a rapidly increasing rate of abortion in Georgia. 2012 Presidential candidate Mitt Romney was effectively a RINO and PLINO; Romney espoused pro-choice positions until he ran for President to appeal to the more conservative base in the Republican primaries in a largely unsuccessful attempt to attract religious evangelicals.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Berry, Susan (October 9, 2018). Sen. Joe Donnelly Tells Indiana Voters He Is ‘Pro-Life,’ but Voted to Fund Planned Parenthood. Breitbart News. Retrieved October 9, 2018.
    See also:
  2. 2.0 2.1 Lauren Phillips (October 2012). Candidates in tight races disavow Indiana candidate's abortion remark. Dallas News. Retrieved on December 24, 2016.
  3. Jeff Flake on Abortion. On The Issues. Retrieved December 29, 2017.
  4. Multiple references:
  5. Multiple references:
  7. Dinan, Stephen (March 30, 2017). Senate passes bill to let states strip funding from Planned Parenthood. The Washington Times. Retrieved April 23, 2017.
  8. Berry, Susan (April 22, 2017). ‘Pro-Life’ Sen. Joe Manchin Poses in Support of Planned Parenthood. Breitbart News. Retrieved April 23, 2017.
  9. Swan, Jonathan (May 8, 2017). Joe Manchin's tightrope on Planned Parenthood. Axios. Retrieved May 16, 2017.
  10. Ertelt, Steve (April 24, 2017). “Pro-Life” Democrat Senator Joe Manchin Caught Holding “I Stand With Planned Parenthood” Sign. Retrieved May 16, 2017.
  11. Ross, Chuck (May 9, 2017). Photos Show Sen. Joe Manchin Is A Planned Parenthood Poseur. The Daily Caller. Retrieved May 16, 2017.
  12. Schor, Elana (May 14, 2017). Abortion politics hound senators from both parties. Politico. Retrieved May 16, 2017.
  13. Carney, Jordain (June 29, 2018). Manchin warns Trump against picking court nominee who will overturn Roe v. Wade. The Hill. Retrieved June 30, 2018.
  14. Multiple references:
  15. Berry, Susan (November 2, 2018). Joe Manchin Avoids Clear Response to Abortion Question During WVA Debate. Breitbart News. Retrieved November 2, 2018.
  16. Associated Press (March 29, 2014). "WV Governor Vetoes Abortion Bill, Sparking Outrage From National Pro-Life Group". Fox News. Retrieved March 9, 2015.
  17. La Ganga, Maria (March 3, 2015). "West Virginia Governor Vetoes Bill Banning Abortion At 20 Weeks". Los-Angeles Times. Retrieved March 9, 2015.
  18. Eyre, Eric & Nuzum, Lydia (March 6, 2015). "20-Week Abortion Ban to Become W.Va. Law; Senate Overrides Tomblin Veto". The Charleston Gazette. Retrieved March 9, 2015.
  19. Haberkorn, Jennifer (July 2, 2018). The truth behind Bob Casey’s ‘pro-life’ stand. Politico. Retrieved July 2, 2018.