OKLAHOMA CITY — Having just left Norman and heading to an interview in Chickasha in his touring RV, pro-life activist and icon Randall Terry said he has a good chance to beat incumbent President Barack Obama on the Oklahoma Democratic presidential preference primary ballot on Tuesday.
“I’m doing a 29-city tour in Oklahoma,” Terry said as he drove down the turnpike. “I’m putting all my eggs in the Oklahoma basket.”
At the very least, Terry is hoping for 5 percent of the vote. But if he gets 15 percent or more, he said he could qualify for delegates, which would add to an interesting political dynamic as this political year progresses.
With a scheduled event keeping him in the Sooner State for two weeks, Terry said he has been warmly received by Democrats he has met, particularly those who lean conservative and are not happy with Obama, a president who, he said, firmly believes in abortion rights has a horrible energy policy and is infringing on religious liberty and freedoms.
“I spoke to a group of 30 pastors in Tulsa a few days ago, and they were livid about Obama’s attacks on religious liberties and freedoms,” Terry said.
Terry has been a controversial figure in America’s abortion wars for many years now, having founded Operation Rescue and getting national attention in 1991’s “Summer of Mercy” anti-abotion event in Wichita, Kan. In the years since, Terrell has been arrested nearly 50 times in his battles against abortion rights and has written a number of books and recorded two albums of music.
“I know I’ve become a one-dimensional character in the media,” Terry said. “And it’s quite unjust. There are certainly a lot of other issues I am passionate about.”
Terry emphasized his master’s degree in diplomacy and international terrorism and said he remains a “political junkie.”
Terry is criss-crossing the state in hopes of doing well in Tuesday’s primary and furthering his campaign to other states, taking delegates with him along the way.
While acknowledging that it’s a long shot, once he talks to people and explains that he focuses on a platform of “protecting the unborn, religious liberty and our oil policy,” Terry said he is pleasantly surprised to hear from Oklahoma voters who say they plan to vote for him.
“One of the reasons I’m running as a Democrat is to give pro-life Democrats a voice,” Terry said. “There are a lot more registered Democrats than Republicans (in Oklahoma), and I’m asking pro-life Democrats to vote for me and send a loud message to President Obama.”
Right now, Terry has a series of graphic, anti-abortion ads running on Oklahoma TV stations during the airing of primetime programs like “American Idol,” “20/20” and “Grey’s Anatomy.”
Terry said that while he knows people are upset about the images of aborted babies, he stands by his decision to pay and have them air during primetime, saying it’s “the required fare for the journey of the crime of killing unborn babies.”
Asked if he is concerned about children seeing these graphic images, Terry said, “Children react the way their parents instruct them. My boys see these images, and I tell them, ‘People who did not love Jesus killed these babies.’”
“Every social movement that has had a victory in the past 100 years has used gruesome images of the victims. Think of the fight against apartheid in South Africa, images from the war in Vietnam, the civil rights movement, the anti-labor movement. All of these movements all showed horrifying images of its victims,” Terry said. “Even Emmett Till’s mom left the coffin open, for Heaven’s sake.”
“Moms and dads sending in 50 bucks here or there” are helping fund the ads, Terry said. He has received very few large donations so far.
Addressing his key issue of ending abortion, Terry — a strong advocate of the “personhood” push in Oklahoma and elsewhere — said he represents a pro-life position held by the majority of Democrats, noting Obama’s rejection of the “Born Alive Infant Protection Act” while serving as a senator in Illinois. The protection act would protect children who survive an abortion attempt.
Terry said approximately 500 infants survive abortion attempts each year.
“When I say President Obama supports murder, I mean it — literally,” Terry said. “This man is the paramount child killer of the Western hemisphere. And Christians have a duty to oppose this agenda and to send a message: ‘I don’t support your agenda to kill children.’”
Domestic drilling a must for economy
As for energy issues, Terry said we need to be doing everything we can to drill domestically, because he feels “President Obama’s energy policy is suicide in the installment plan” and that, as a result, “every time we put gas in our car, a portion of that money is going to Islamic terrorism.”
“He is forcing us to commit economic suicide,” Terry said.
“If when (Obama) entered office he had allowed us to begin drilling, we could have energy independence,” Terry said. He noted Obama’s rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline and the fact that it could create thousands of American jobs.
“An oil policy that was pro-America … we could at least have a chance for our economy to make a comeback,” he said.
As Terry works hard to get the support of Oklahoma Democrats, he has already received an endorsement from conservative pundit and writer Ann Coulter. Coulter is also a supporter of Mitt Romney but, being strongly anti-abortion, she is helping Terry as well and will appear with him at a rally Saturday at Arrow Heights Baptist Church in Broken Arrow.
In the meantime, Terry said he will continue to spread his social and political message to voters in Oklahoma and beyond.
“The best thing they can do is vote for me,” Terry said. “It would be a huge rebuke to the president.”