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Why I Am a Single-Issue Voter

By April 6, 2016Culture5 min read

By way of introduction, let me say some may find what follows offensive. What I have penned here isn’t meant to be provocative for its own sake. It’s blunt, yes. But the subject matter really can’t be made “nice.” There’s a reality embedded here that needs to be stated clearly, even with the awareness, some will be put off by the straight-forward way it’s stated. This is my opinion.

Over 20 years ago, I was in a discussion with someone about an upcoming election. Then, as now, there was the feeling among many that the election was a turning point, a defining moment, when the future of our nation would be decided. That same sentiment has been expressed at every election since. It’s an appropriate sentiment, because every election IS a turning point. It’s the way the founders of our great republic designed it. It’s in our electoral process that the American people have the opportunity to install those candidates into office, whom they believe best embody their position on the important issues of the day.

Our future as a nation is determined in the voting booth. Every time we go to the polls.

In that same conversation 20 years ago, I expressed my belief that a candidate’s position on abortion was the most critical factor in determining whether or not to vote for him/her. The person I was speaking with disparaged my “single-issue” perspective. He said that abortion was just one of many important issues and that to vote for a candidate on that position alone was short-sighted. Since I’d always seen abortion as much larger than “one of many important political issues,” I was taken aback by this retort and failed to respond. Both wisdom and tact demanded that I reply in a measured and reasonable manner. And to that point, I had not formulated an eloquent response.

Several years ago, I had the opportunity to hear Dr. Lawrence White, a Lutheran minister, address this issue. He perfectly articulated why ending abortion ought to rise as the single-issue that defines what we look for in candidates who stand for election. Contrary to what a recent president said, it’s NOT “the economy, stupid.” It’s not national defense, as important as that issue is. It’s not immigration or terrorism. Neither does global climate change nor Iran provide the challenge most determinative of our future. The single issue that rises above all these is the murder of millions of innocent pre-born children. Just as Abel’s blood cried out of the ground to God, so buckets of it scream for justice from the abortion clinics across America.

A nation that slaughters its most innocent and vulnerable, its powerless and defenseless, in the name of convenience, doesn’t deserve economic prosperity or safe borders. What it deserves is the wrath of a Holy God Who has pledged Himself to the poor and weak.

I AM a single-issue voter because THIS issue – the life of the unborn, is THE watershed reality of our time.

Once I know a candidate’s position on abortion, I know their position on virtually every other issue. If they are staunchly pro-life, I know they will be politically conservative and classically faithful to the founders on the rest of the issues. If a candidate is pro-abortion, they deny the image of God in humanity and can’t be trusted to be right on ANY issue, regardless of how they campaign. How can you trust a man or woman who is for the murder of infants? Make no mistake, that is exactly what pro-abortion advocates are for. They aren’t for “choice.” They are for the murder of the innocent.

So, I am a single issue voter. I will vote for real pro-life. By real, I mean those whose pro-life position isn’t adopted just because it is part of the party platform. I mean people whose pro-life position is rooted in a consistent worldview that understands the government’s role to protect the innocent and to prosecute the guilty in accordance with what the Apostle Paul says in Romans 13.

Yes, I understand the appeal of the pragmatic view that voting for an unelectable pro-life candidate may take away a vote from another major party candidate, who as a pro-abortion candidate, would be “the lesser of two evils.” As recent elections have demonstrated, a so-called fiscal conservative-social liberal ends up being a fiscal weasel. But, of course, how can someone who is wrong on THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE of the day be right or consistent on ANYTHING ELSE?

I will not “throw my vote away” on any candidate who lacks the moral wisdom and strength to take a stand for what is patently good and right, campaign as pro-life and will use their office to bring an end to the holocaust of abortion.

Lance Ralston is the founding and lead pastor of Calvary Chapel Oxnard and provides content for Check out his YouTube channel,, for Church History, Leadership, and Bible commentary, as well as the popular podcast series “History of the Christian Church” on Apple Podcasts.