The anti-abortion movement is turning on Republican lawmakers who support bills to protect in vitro fertilization, accusing them of sanctioning murder.

….“For a lot of conservative Republican lawmakers, being against abortion has served as a kind of lazy way to say that you’re a conservative,” said Jameson Taylor, director of policy and legislative affairs for the Mississippi-based American Family Association Action. “Frankly, a lot of Republican lawmakers are not in touch with conservative principles because they have not taken sufficient time to think through what those principles are.”

In Alabama, the anti-abortion movement resoundingly condemned a bill shielding IVF providers from criminal and civil charges, and pressured GOP Gov. Kay Ivey to veto it. When she signed it anyway, one anti-abortion organization said the new law “disrespects human life and strips human beings of their dignity,” and another ran digital ads against Ivey and Republican lawmakers using graphic imagery and accusing them of “[betraying] life.”

“Politicians cannot call themselves pro-life, affirm the truth that human life begins at the moment of fertilization and then enact laws that allow the callous killing of these preborn children simply because they were created through IVF,” Live Action president Lila Rose said after Alabama Republicans approved the legislation.

….In Congress, anti-abortion groups are vowing to penalize GOP members if they support pro-IVF bills they believe go too far, including a nonbinding resolution introduced by Rep. Nancy Mace (R-S.C.) earlier this month. And speakers, including the head of the influential Heritage Foundation, told activists at a recent anti-abortion summit in Washington, D.C., that Republicans have proved themselves “a fickle ally in the fight for the unborn” since the Dobbs decision, and can’t be relied upon to advance their agenda.

“Republicans — those who claim to be pro-life — have to be consistent in that viewpoint, and not run from that conversation,” Tony Perkins, president of the conservative Family Research Council, told POLITICO.

Yet the divide over IVF does not mean anti-abortion groups are breaking with the GOP entirely. This week, leaders of two of the country’s biggest groups — Susan B. Anthony List and March for Life — will attend House Republicans’ annual policy retreat. And even the groups most upset over the wave of pro-IVF legislation won’t commit to primarying the bills’ supporters, telling Politico they’d rather “educate” them on the issue.

….“Saying that you support IVF doesn’t mean anything unless we talk about what IVF is,” said Kristi Hamrick, chief policy strategist for Students for Life of America. “Do you support allowing a clinic that allows another patient to wander back and destroy embryos to go without any sanctions? Do you support allowing a disreputable doctor who uses his own sperm to fertilize most of the women’s eggs in the facility — that person shouldn’t experience any repercussions? What exactly are you saying you support?”

….As the debate rages at the state and national levels, Perkins and other anti-abortion leaders say they’re hopeful, despite recent setbacks, that the conversation ignited by the Alabama ruling will eventually lead to more restrictions on IVF.

“The silver lining here is that it’s drawing attention to something that hasn’t gotten a lot of attention,” he said. “More policymakers will begin to look at this and say, ‘Hey, you know? That this is something that really does need some oversight.’ I think they’ll wind up in a place different than the Alabama Legislature.”

From Politico