Text of Sen. Sam Brownback's remarks as prepared for delivery at the 2004 Republican National Convention on Tuesday, Aug. 31:
My friends, it is a privilege to be with you.
A fundamental principle of our democracy and our Republican Party is respect for the inherent dignity, equality, and sanctity of every human life. We do not measure the value of a life by wealth or social status. We believe that every person is beautiful, unique, and has great purpose. Every life must be honored and protected.
At our party’s convention in 1860, we affirmed that America is a land of liberty and equality for all.
We nominated Abraham Lincoln, and we denounced, and ultimately defeated, the scourge of slavery. Our nation is again called to the defense of human life and dignity.
HIV/AIDS is one of the greatest moral and humanitarian crises of our time.
Over 20 million people have died of the disease since the start of the pandemic. Without our commitment, AIDS could take the lives of 60 million by 2020. Millions of African children have lost one or both parents to AIDS.
Here at home, President Bush has committed record levels of support to fighting the disease. He has called for a new focus on abstinence education and has established a new effort to develop an AIDS vaccine.
Internationally, President Bush has marshaled an army of compassion to combat this disease. His Emergency Plan for HIV/AIDS, Malaria, and TB authorized a record $15 billion, which will treat 2 million people, prevent 7 million new infections, and care for 10 million orphans and others affected by AIDS.
Under President Bush’s leadership, we will work to protect every human life. From the HIV/AIDS patient in Uganda to the 14-year-old girl trafficked and sold into prostitution, this nation and this president will fight for you!
From the Down’s Syndrome child seeking an education to the prisoner working to turn away from a life of crime, this nation and this president will fight for you!
From the man held in a foreign prison for practicing his faith to the Sudanese refugee attacked for the color of her skin, this nation and this president will fight for you! From the child in the womb to the mother carrying her, this nation and this president will fight for you!
Why? Because each is wonderfully made, and what we do for the so-called “least of these,” we do for our Creator. We are leading the world in a heroic rescue of human life.
This is the essence of compassionate conservatism. It is the mettle of George Bush.
God bless you, and God bless America!