Carly Fiorina speaks at Vitae Foundation dinner in KC

Carly Fiorina delivered the keynote speech at the Vitae Foundation’s annual pro-life dinner Sept. 9 in Kansas City.


Fiorina punctuated her speech with the line, “I promise you this: I, like you will not be capped. I, like you, will not be bullied into silence.” photo by Gabby Staker

by Gabby Staker, Staff Writer

Carly Fiorina dropped out after her first year of law school and started her business career as a secretary. She worked her way up and became the first woman to lead a Fortune 20 company, serving as CEO of Hewlett Packard from 1999 to 2005. Fortune named her its most powerful woman in business for six consecutive years.

She then directed her efforts toward the 2016 Presidential Election where she debated against the likes of Ted Cruz and Donald Trump. Now, according to chairman of the Vitae Foundation Lamar Hunt Jr., “she continues to be a formidable voice for the unborn.”

On Friday, Sept. 9, Fiorina spoke in front of hundreds of Kansas Citians at the Vitae Foundation’s annual pro-life dinner. Her message: “We are winning this fight.”

“This fight” meaning the fight for life.

Throughout her speech, Fiorina shared many anecdotes from her time campaigning from May 2015 to February 2016. In one such story, she remembered tailgating in the parking lot of a football game in Iowa and being pelted with condoms by Planned Parenthood protesters.

“I didn’t mind so much, but I guess the people trying to have a good time at the tailgate party were a little alarmed,” she said. “And once again, [they were] yelling: ‘Why do you hate women? Why do you hate women?’”

Fiorina’s campaign was riddled with similar sentiments. “Emily’s List came out and declared me an enemy of women, said Fiorina. “Because I’m pro-life.”

So, engaging with the protesters at the tailgate, she asked a woman, “’Does it strike you as fair– have you ever been to a pregnancy center?’ [The woman] said, ‘No, but I know they exist.’ I said, ‘How would you feel if pregnancy centers were funded by taxpayers and supported pro-life candidates like me?’ She said that wouldn’t be fair. Then I said, ‘Well then why is it fair that Planned Parenthood is supported by taxpayer dollars and supports pro-abortion candidates? Does that strike you as fair?’ She paused. She had to think about that for a moment.”

A young, seventeen-year-old woman once approached Fiorina in a diner, bluntly asking her why she “hated” LGBT people.

“You know what I said to that woman who asked why I hated LGBT people?” Fiorina asked her audience. “I looked at her and I said, ‘Have you ever known someone who was pregnant?’ She said ‘Yes.’ She got a smile on her face. She said, ‘Yes, my aunt’s pregnant!’ And I said ‘Have you watched her? Have you seen her belly grow?’ ‘Yes!’ And I said, ‘Have you had a chance to put your hand on her belly and feel something inside?’ ‘Yes!’ And I looked at her and said, ‘Are you so sure that’s not a life? Because I’m pretty sure it is. Now tell me why that makes me hate LGBT people.’ She paused. She thought. She turned away silently, though I am quite certain that she went home and thought a long time about that.”

Fiorina was raised in a faithful family, but never really reflected on what that meant for her life. Slowly, life experiences did that for her.

“I met my husband, Frank– thirty-five years ago, as a matter of fact– and when I got to know him a little better and we got married, I learned that his mother had been told by her doctors to abort him,” Fiorina said. “She was quite old for childbearing by the time she became pregnant with him and she’d had very difficult pregnancies with his two older sisters and so the doctors told her to abort her unborn child. But my mother-in-law was a woman of great faith and great courage and she chose to bring her son into the world. She spent a year in the hospital following his birth. I have thought often of how different my life would be if my husband had not been brought into the world.”

She closed her speech by quoting something her mother had told her while she was in Sunday school. “What you are is God’s gift to you. What you make of yourself is your gift to God… Every life that is destroyed before it has an opportunity to fulfill its potential is a stain on our nation’s character.”

The night ended with a prayer and a live cover of Matthew West’s song, Untold.