The party first made the state ballot in the 1978 gubernatorial election, where its candidate Mary Jane Tobin won 130,000 votes. Its share of the vote subsequently declined, although it maintained official ballot status until 2002, when it fell short of the 50,000 votes required to remain on the ballot. In 2006, the party endorsed Reverend Jennifer Liese for Governor. Liese's signatures were disputed by a Republican staffer, Rachel L. Bledi. As of November 2006 there were 40,278 members statewide. The party did not endorse a gubernatorial candidate in 2010, though it has been able to get two state supreme court nominees onto the ballot via the petition process. Its ballot icon was a fetus in utero. When the party had ballot access (prior to 2002), it sometimes cross-endorsed pro-life candidates of other parties; in Presidential elections, it cross-endorsed Republican George H. W. Bush in 1992, Constitution Party candidate Howard Phillips in 1996 (giving Phillips his only ballot access, as the Constitution Party has never had access in the state), and Reform nominee Patrick Buchanan in 2000.
The Right-to-Life Party's initial goal has consistently been thwarted; abortion was legalized in New York in 1970 and has remained so there ever since, and the United States Supreme Court's decision in Roe v. Wade effectively legalized abortion nationally in 1973.
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