Progressive, atheist, pro-life. One of these things is not like the other, but all are words that describe the newest candidate to enter the race for the 2024 Democratic presidential nomination.
Pro-life activist Terrisa Bukovinac announced her bid to run as a Democrat in the 2024 presidential election on Thursday. Bukovinac is the founder of the Progressive Anti-Abortion Uprising (PAAU), a pro-life organization committed to combating abortion despite maintaining a leftist stance on other political and social issues.
Outside the pro-life or progressive camps, Bukovinac’s name may be unknown, especially compared to her competitors in the Democratic primary such as Kennedy and Biden. But Bukovinac’s run is not about winning. She hopes to bring a “much-needed voice of reason” to the Democratic Party on the topic of abortion, according to National Review.
“Any FCC TV station must run the ads of any federal candidate uncensored, and through these ads I will expose the human rights atrocities committed in abortion businesses across the country,” Bukovinac explained to me.
Bukovinac made headlines in March 2022 when she, along with fellow PAAU activist Lauren Handy, announced they had found the remains of 115 first-trimester babies and five preemie-sized babies outside the Washington Surgi-Clinic in Washington, D.C., workplace of late-term abortionist Cesare Santangelo. The remains appeared to be evidence of illegal partial-birth abortions, but Handy and the pro-life activists were the only ones to face criminal investigation and prosecution, not Santangelo.
“The Metropolitan Police Department is investigating the circumstances surrounding the discovery of five fetuses in a residence,” the department told the Daily Signal’s Mary Margaret Olohan. “At this time, there is no investigation into the medical provider.” In other words, the police were only interested in investigating the pro-lifers who discovered the babies’ remains, not the abortionist who may have performed illegal partial-birth abortions on some of the babies, who appeared to have died at what was likely a viable gestational age.
Handy has recently been found guilty of violating the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act for a 2020 protest at Santangelo’s practice, at which “some [protesters] simply kneeled and prayed … some passed out pro-life literature and counseled abortion-minded women, and others roped and chained themselves together inside the facility,” according to their attorneys.
The FACE Act is unequally applied to target pro-life activists. The Department of Justice has indicted 126 pro-lifers under FACE since it was enacted in 1994, according to PAAU’s calculations. By contrast, only three pro-abortion activists have been indicted under the same law, despite dozens of attacks ranging from vandalism to arson on pro-life pregnancy centers in just the past year or two.
In July, Bukovinac and fellow pro-life advocate Mike Gribbin faced a violent assault while protesting outside the Washington Surgi-Clinic by passersby who opposed their protest, according to a police report. The altercation was caught on video, which Bukovinac posted on X, formerly known as Twitter.
Bukovinac’s strong pro-life stance separates her from the rest of the Democrat candidates. While Robert F. Kennedy Jr. initially voiced his support for a national abortion ban after the first three months of pregnancy, his campaign later tried to walk back his comments.
“I will not stop until the toxic relationship between the Democratic Party and the abortion industry is broken and those children, and the countless children like them, have justice,” Bukovinac told me. “A better world is possible, and it starts with us.”