Obama Causing Huge Boost for Anti-Abortion Groups

The first hint of a stir came just after Election Day, when the computer servers at Americans United for Life crashed. People were swamping the Web site to sign a petition urging President-elect Barack Obama to stand firm against abortion.

“I got a call from one of our guys, ‘We have a problem,’ ” said Charmaine Yoest, the group’s president and chief executive officer. “And I was like, ‘The problem would be what?’”

Obama’s first 84 days in office have been like an extended recruiting drive for the anti-abortion movement, reinvigorating a constituency he sought to neutralize during the campaign. Activists report a noticeable spike in activity as Obama moves to defend and expand a woman’s right to choose an abortion – causing anti-abortion voters to mobilize in ways never needed during the Bush administration. So far this year:

— The Susan B. Anthony List says its supporters sent more anti-abortion-related letters, e-mails and faxes to Obama and lawmakers in the first quarter alone than during each of the last two years.

— The American Life League reported a 30 percent uptick in donations over last year.

— Pennsylvania Sen. Bob Casey Jr., an anti-abortion Democrat who campaigned vigorously for Obama, has received more mail on abortion than on any other issue in 2009, spokesman Larry Smar said.

More from Politico:
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