Phyllis Schlafly

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Phyllis Schlafly speaking at CPAC in 1988
Phyllis Schlafly Blue Badge.png
Phyllis speaking in 1983.jpg

Born August 15, 1924
St. Louis, Missouri
Died September 5, 2016 (aged 92)
Ladue, Missouri
Spouse Fred Schlafly (m. 1949, d. 1993)

6 children including Andy Schlafly

Phyllis McAlpin Stewart Schlafly (August 15, 1924 – September 5, 2016) was a founder of the modern conservative movement. She was described by The New York Times as "one of the most relentless and accomplished platform debaters of any gender to be found on any side of any issue."[1] "I think she's probably the best political organizer we've seen in American history," stated historical author Rick Perlstein.[2] Playwright Dahvi Waller said that Phyllis "was an incredibly effective grassroots organizer, and she was able to mobilize women. That was her superpower."[3]

Schlafly with Ronald Reagan.
as a 17-year-old wearing bobby socks, Phyllis on a date in the early 1940s

She led in recognizing the importance of gender as an issue in the 1970s, and correctly predicted what followed for 50 years. She was instrumental in making the Republican Party pro-life (which it was not in 1973 when Roe v. Wade was rendered). On June 24, 2022, Republican-nominated U.S. Supreme Court Justices observed that abortion is not in the U.S. Constitution, and overturned Roe v. Wade.

A rising Democrat star legislator wrote on Aug. 26, 2023, "The modern conservative movement often pays homage to former President Ronald Reagan, as the executor of modern conservatism. In my opinion, they are sorely mistaken. They owe their stronghold to Phyllis Schlafly."[4] The New York Times wrote about Phyllis Schlafly in 2017:

Until the rise of Mr. Trump, wave after wave of right-wing Republican activism was driven by comfortable but morally scandalized suburbanites, particularly suburban women. Shaken by what they saw as liberal attacks on beloved institutions — family, church, law enforcement, private property — they organized politically, and found meaning and community in it.

This phenomenon long predates the Tea Party movement that so galvanized Republican voters for the 2010 midterm elections. ... Phyllis Schlafly induced housewives to become local activists.

“These were local women whom most politicians feared to alienate,” wrote Mrs. Schlafly’s biographer, Donald Critchlow, “because these women talked politics, volunteered in political campaigns and wore political buttons when they came to meetings.”

Democrats have their passionate local leaders, but they’ve lacked a Schlafly-style nationwide network of kitchen-table activists.[5]

Her favorite Bible verse is a reference to eagles, the American symbol: "they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;

they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint."[6]

Early life

Schlafly was born Phyllis McAlpin Stewart in St. Louis, Missouri, to Odile Dodge Stewart and John Bruce Stewart, in 1924. Her formative years were during the Great Depression, along with her younger sister, while her father was unable to find work. In 1945, she graduated from Radcliffe College (which later merged into Harvard once it began admitting women) with a Master's Degree in Political Science.


Among Phyllis Schlafly's early political achievements, in 1946 she worked in the successful House of Representatives campaign of republican Clyde I. Bakewell.

In 1975, when 34 out of the required 38 states had ratified ERA and nearly every politician and pundit was certain that the Equal Rights Amendment would soon become part of the Constitution, a snide NY Times headline about Phyllis Schlafly was entitled "Opponent of E.R.A. Confident of Its Defeat."[7] Yet she was right.

Phyllis Schlafly wrote 4 times as much as William Shakespeare. She is often called the "conservative icon," "conservative legend," or conservatives' "first lady." She should be in the Guinness Book of World Records for the most number of debates and controversial speeches on college campuses (more than 500), typically to packed auditoriums; for writing the longest-running political newsletter, the Phyllis Schlafly Report (50 years); and for the longest career as a delegate or alternate delegate to a national political convention (more than 60 years to the Republican National Convention, dating back to 1952).

Phyllis Schlafly was the first and most outspoken prominent conservative supporter of the presidential candidacy of Donald Trump, beginning in mid-2015.[8] In his eulogy at her funeral, Donald Trump observed that Phyllis Schlafly was a powerful, positive influence for one-quarter of all of American history. Many credit his victory to her leadership in supporting him.

Many credit Phyllis Schlafly for making it respectable for a woman to stay at home and raise children, amid an all-out assault by liberals to discredit that traditional way of life. By 1990, after advocacy by Phyllis Schlafly in support of stay-at-home moms, the percentage of women aged 25–54 in the workforce in the United States stopped increasing, in contrast with many other countries.

She is especially recognized for defeating the Equal Rights Amendment,[9] and for opposing feminism in general. She is also recognized for nearly single-handedly making the Republican Party pro-life. In 1985 she was considered the 3rd most admired woman in the world, according to a Good Housekeeping poll.[10]

She was married to John Fred Schlafly, Jr. for forty-four years until his death (1909–1993), and was the mother of six children: John, Bruce, Roger, Liza, Anne, and Conservapedia founder Andrew Schlafly.

Prophetic statements proven right

Phyllis Schlafly cartoon - 10-27-21 resized.png

  • In the 1970s, she predicted that "ERA would legalize the granting of marriage licenses to same-sex couples and generally implement the gay and lesbian agenda.” In 1993, the Hawaii Supreme Court used its State ERA to mandate same-sex marriage, and in 2006 a Maryland Court did likewise based on its State ERA.[11]
  • She praised Donald Trump throughout 2015, when few took his campaign seriously. Trump then won the GOP nomination in an upset and the presidency in another upset.
  • She declared in August 2016 that the Speaker of the House Paul Ryan should resign due to his liberal views on immigration, which he did less than two years later despite being relatively young.[12]


Unlike most politicians and activists, Phyllis Schlafly has always had a good-natured wit in addressing difficult issues and adversity. For example, when Phyllis Schlafly received an honorary degree from Washington University, a fraction of the faculty and students protested the honor by wearing white armbands and/or turning their backs. When Mrs. Schlafly was asked for her comment about the protesters, she responded:[13]

I'm not sure they're mature enough to graduate!


Dr. Phyllis Schlafly, May 16, 2008.

Phyllis Schlafly first came to American national attention with her book, A Choice, Not An Echo 1964. (One of the ten best-selling conservative books of all time; three million copies sold.)

She authored 27 books on subjects as varied as family and feminism (The Power of the Positive Woman), nuclear strategy (Strike From Space and Kissinger on the Couch), education (Child Abuse in the Classroom), child care (Who Will Rock the Cradle? and Stronger Families or Bigger Government?,), and a phonics book (Turbo Reader), on the Judiciary: The Supremacists. Her book Feminist Fantasies is a collection of essays on feminism in the media, workplace, home, and the military. She was also a contributor to Great American Conservative Women.

Her final book, The Conservative Case for Trump, was released the day after she passed away and became a New York Times bestseller.

Jill Lepore

Jill Lepore devoted a considerable amount of ink to Phyllis Schlafly in Lepore's book These Truths.[14] Calls her a political genius and credits her with more or less single-handedly defeating the ERA, the Equal Rights Amendment.

On a July 2023 interview on Firing Line, she elaborated:[15]
I think Schlafly’s just fascinating. She really has been ignored by historians for two reasons. One, academic historians, who tend to be liberal, have really been bad at offering a history of the rise of the modern conservative movement, this just tremendously important political insurgency, you know, since the 1950s, of which, you know, Buckley’s Firing Line was an important element. And then conservative historians just haven’t really paid attention to Schlafly because she was a woman.

Smears against her

The totalitarian leftist hate group known as the Southern Poverty Law Center, known for its harassment and libel of conservatives and conservative organizations, published an article shortly after her passing titled, "Eagle Forum's Phyllis Schlafly Leaves A Legacy Tied to Conspiracy Theories."[16] In an interview, Phil Donahue, with his zero-sum game fallacy, incorrectly labeled her position as saying that "women belong in the home" when her actual position was that women should have equal opportunities, but tend to be happier in the home. [17]

Schlafly has falsely been accused of anti-Semitism; while some argue that her usage of terms such as "kingmakers" were code words/dogwhistles, she never targeted Jews as part of any conspiracy theory and her opposition to elites she described as the "Eastern Establishment" were Anglo-Saxon Protestants and not Jews.[18]

A few liberals/leftists have falsely alleged that Schlafly was a racist who opposed civil rights, a topic covered more extensively in the article Phyllis Schlafly and civil rights.

Quotes by others

Ann Coulter wrote:

There is no more pristine example of the left's in-crowd snobbery than their treatment of conservative author and activist Phyllis Schlafly. (Slander, page 35)

Ben Shapiro: "In 1977, Phyllis Schlafly warned the left would kill male/female bathrooms. They said she was a liar. She wasn't." On Twitter, November 4, 2015.[19]

Gavin McInnes: Phyllis Schlafly was, "the most empowered woman of all time...what I love about her is her brain." On YouTube, September 10, 2016.[20]

Jayne Schindler, a conservative leader in Colorado, described Phyllis Schlafly in the 1970s (when John Wayne was a top conservative Hollywood icon) as "John Wayne in a skirt."

Quotes by Phyllis Schlafly

See also Phyllis Schlafly Quotes.

Phyllis Schlafly lead the opposition to the Equal Rights Amendment.

Liberals and leftists recently tried to resurrect the efforts to get Equal Rights Amendment passed, but they failed.

In supporting Donald Trump for president, Phyllis Schlafly said, "He has fight in him!"

Advice to men: "Find out if your girlfriend is a feminist before you get too far into it. Some of them are pretty. They don't all look like Bella Abzug."[21]

"Women have babies and men provide the support. If you don't like the way we're made you've got to take it up with God."[22]

In describing the mindset of the liberal media, “They are like a flock of birds that land together on a high-tension wire, and later they depart to go somewhere else.”

“Don't call me Ms. To me, it means misery.”[23]

Against globalism, "Foreign countries are free to copy our system. Instead, they want to copy our Inventions."

On United States military superiority, "The atomic bomb is a marvelous gift that was given to our country by a wise God."[22]

In reference to feminists, “I always said, I’m not going to let those slobs ruin my day.”[24]

In speeches to feminist audiences, “First, I would like to thank my husband, Fred, for allowing me to come here this evening.”[25]

On the military and feminism: “The purpose of our military is to field the finest troops possible to defend our Nation and win wars. The goal of feminists, however, is to impose a mindless equality, regardless of how many people it hurts.”[26]

On leadership: “The crying need of our times is for noble leaders - for men and women who have the courage to stand fast against false propaganda, who persevere in their principles when they reach high positions, who remain loyal to the people who look up to them, who cannot be seduced by money or scared by power, who listen to the voice of conscience instead of the roar of the crowd, and who are willing to pay the price that leadership demands in terms of self-discipline and difficult decisions.”


Phyllis Schlafly1.jpg

Here is a partial listing of the 27 books authored by Phyllis Schlafly:

Her favorite books and authors

See also


  1. Joseph Lelyveld, future Executive Editor of the New York Times, in The New York Times Magazine (1977).
  2. Retro Report
  4. LaKeshia N Myers, "Rep. Myers’ Summer Reading List #3: The ‘Girl Power’ Edition," Milwaukee Courier (August 26, 2023).
  5. How the Left Learned to Hate Like the Right by Michelle Goldberg, New York Times, April 29, 2017
  6. Isaiah 40:31
  11. "Phyllis Schlafly Was Right"
  14. Lepore, J. (2018). These Truths: A History of the United States. United States: W. W. Norton.
  15. Jill Lepore | Video | Firing Line with Margaret Hoover | PBS July 7, 2023
  18. O'Neil, Tyler (December 8, 2019). 'Marvelous Mrs. Maisel' Repeats Debunked Anti-Semitism Smear Against Phyllis Schlafly. PJ Media. Retrieved April 23, 2021.
  22. 22.0 22.1 <
  24. (p. 159)

External links