Life Advocacy Briefing

April 15, 2019

Blessed Easter! / Truth Shows Up at the White House
‘Dismemberment’ Ban to be Filed in Senate
Second Chance at Life / In the States / In the Courts
Facing Reality but Turning Away

Blessed Easter!

WE INTEND TO TAKE A BREAK for Holy Week, and we wish our readers a Resurrection celebration full of peace, hope and joy. Expect us to be back to serving you with our April 29 edition. God bless each of you in your family and work and citizen life. He has already so richly blessed America; may His hand be evident upon our land, so much in need of His forgiveness and mercy.

Truth Shows Up at the White House

NOW THAT THE PRO-LIFE BLOCKBUSTER UNPLANNED HAS PROVED so successful in American cinemas, President Donald Trump hosted a White House screening Friday evening of Gosnell: The Trial of America’s Biggest Serial Killer.

“Gosnell tells the true story,” reports Calvin Freiburger for, “of Philadelphia abortionist Dr. Kermit Gosnell’s arrest, trial and conviction for the first-degree murder of three born-alive babies and the involuntary manslaughter of patient Karnamaya Mongar. It’s based,” he notes, “‘very heavily on actual court transcripts,’ ‘dozens of hours of interviews’ with Gosnell himself and the case’s grand jury report.

“The film highlights the shocking details of the original trial,” writes Mr. Freiburger, “such as Gosnell cutting the spinal cords of hundreds of newborns; witnesses describing infants who survived initial abortion attempts as ‘swimming’ in toilets ‘to get out;’ the feet of aborted babies stored in a freezer, and the mainstream media’s initial avoidance of the story.”

The landmark educational drama has been released on DVD after stunning box-office success. Never, though, did the producers anticipate that the President of the United States would host a showing of their ground-breaking work.

‘Dismemberment’ Ban to be Filed in Senate

A DISMEMBERMENT ABORTION BAN will soon be filed in the US Senate by Senators Mike Rounds (R-SD) and James Lankford (R-OK), according to an announcement by National Right to Life. Readers are asked to call their home-state Senators and ask them to contact the sponsors with an offer to co-sponsor the bill upon introduction. (Capitol switchboard: 1-202/224-3121)

Said National Right to Life president Carol Tobias in the NRL News Today report, “‘We believe this law [sic] has the power to change how the public views the gruesome reality of abortion in the United States. Before the first trimester ends, the unborn child has a beating heart, brain waves and every organ system in place. Dismemberment abortions occur after this living baby has reached these developmental milestones.’ … The method,” states NRL/NT, “is commonly used starting at about 14 weeks of pregnancy and extending into the third trimester.”

A similar bill, the Saving Children Act, was introduced in the House in January as HR-956 by Rep. Debbie Lesko (R-AZ). It has 40 co-sponsors and is pending in the House Committee on Judiciary’s Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism & Homeland Security.

Second Chance at Life

AN ABORTION PILL REVERSAL BILL will soon be introduced in the US House by Rep. Mike Conaway (R-TX), according to the National Right to Life Committee (NRL). Readers are asked to call their home-district Representative and ask them to contact Rep. Conaway to request co-sponsorship of the measure. (Capitol switchboard: 1-202/224-3121)

The “Second Chance at Life Act” requires a chemical abortionist to inform his or her customer “that the effects of the chemical abortion pill can potentially be reversed in order to save her baby, if she changes her mind after taking the first of two drugs,” explains NRL.

Chemical abortions are committed via a two-drug protocol, with Cytotec being self-administered 24 to 48 hours after the aborting customer has ingested an RU-486 pill. If the Cytotec, which is the drug which expels the baby, is not taken, the baby can sometimes survive, as RU-486 is not always effective without its partnering drug.

“Over 500 babies have been saved by the abortion pill reversal protocol,” said Carol Tobias, NRL president, in the NRL News Today report. “We applaud Rep. Mike Conaway for leading the charge to empower women with the information that chemical abortions can be reversed and that their unborn children can be saved.”

The federal proposal closely tracks NRL-developed legislation which has been enacted already in seven states: Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Kentucky, North Dakota, South Dakota and Utah.

In the States

  • THE HEARTBEAT ABORTION BILL HAS PASSED its final legislative hurdle in Ohio and is on the way to the desk of Gov. Mike DeWine (R), who has said he will sign it. The House approved the bill 56 to 39, and the Senate voted 18 to 13 Wednesday to accept House amendments.
  • NORTH DAKOTA GOV. DOUG BURGUM (R) SIGNED his state’s new Dismemberment Abortion Ban last Wednesday. Using the dismemberment technique, which is the most common tactic employed in second-term-or-later abortions, can result in a felony charge, reports the Associated Press, “punishable by up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine. … The bill becomes effective,” reports AP, “if a federal appeals court or the US Supreme Court allows its enforcement.”
  • THE OKLAHOMA SENATE has advanced to the House a proposal for a constitutional amendment “clarifying,” states the official summary, that “no provision of the ST constitution secures or protects a right to perform or receive an abortion.” The Senate vote was 40 to 8. SB-195 is currently pending in the House Rules Committee; if passed by the House, the proposal would be submitted to voters for approval.
  • DOCTOR-ABETTED SUICIDE has passed both houses of the New Jersey legislature and will soon be on the desk of Gov. Phil Murphy (D), who has said he will sign it. The bill passed each house by the bare minimum required, ending a five-year drive in the northeastern state, abetted by the newspaper industry.
  • AN ATTEMPT TO LEGALIZE ABETTED SUICIDE in Maryland lost by one vote in the State Senate in March, securing 23 of the 24 votes needed after having passed the House 74 to 66. “‘Maryland Right to Life’s grassroots base did a wonderful job letting their legislators know their opposition to Physician Assisted Suicide,’ said Ernest Ohlhoff, executive director of MaRtL,” quoted by Dave Andrusko in National Right to Life News Today (NRL/NT). “‘2019 marks the fourth time the measure has been defeated in Maryland.’” The Maryland group’s president, a former officer of National Right to Life, attributed the victory to a vigorous phone campaign.
  • MICHIGAN LAWMAKERS HAVE FILED TWO COMPANION BILLS to add a ban on dismemberment abortion to the statute barring partial-birth abortion. HB-4320 and -4321 have been referred to the House Committee on Families, Children & Seniors. Declared Right to Life of Michigan president Barbara Listing, quoted by Martin Barillas for, “‘These bills are Michigan’s response to New York’s abortion law and other states seeking to explicitly allow abortions through all nine months of pregnancy for any reason.’ … According to RtLM,” writes Mr. Barillas, “there were 1,777 dismemberment abortions in Michigan reported to the state’s Dept. of Health & Human Services. Of those, 98% occurred in the second trimester, between 13 and 24 weeks of pregnancy.” Commented Ms. Listing in the LifeSiteNews report, “‘Tearing the arms and legs off children in the later stages of pregnancy is not a good reflection of our Michigan values.’” The House legislation follows introduction in the Michigan Senate early in March of SB-165, which would outlaw the abortion killing of babies aged 20 weeks after conception; the measure has been referred to the Senate Committee on Health Policy & Human Services.
  • ARKANSAS GOV. ASA HUTCHINSON (R) HAS SIGNED legislation to outlaw abortion for the purpose of eliminating babies diagnosed prenatally with Down Syndrome. The measure passed the House 75 to 11 after previously clearing the Senate 29 to 2.

In the Courts

  • U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE ROBERT BLACKBURN issued a permanent injunction relieving Dr. James Dobson, his Dr. James Dobson Family Institute and his Family Talk radio program from being forced, under the ObamaCare law and regulations, to provide abortion-inducing contraceptives to beneficiaries of his organizations’ employee health benefits plans. In a statement carried by CBN News, Dr. Dobson declared: “The assault on religious freedom launched against us and those who share our values has finally been repelled. … Because of this ruling, every religious institution – not just ours – has greater legal standing to combat the threats of extinction unless they provide a health plan that includes abortion-inducing drugs. … Precedents are now set in the law that will make it much harder for governments, whether federal, state or local, to attempt to so brazenly disregard our religious liberties in the future. Yet it is still true that the price of liberty is determined vigilance.”
  • FEDERAL DISTRICT JUDGE MICHAEL BARRETT has placed a temporary restraining order on enforcement of Ohio’s newly passed Dismemberment Abortion Ban. Aides to the state’s attorney general, David Yost, “confirmed to Associated Press [AP] he intends to ‘vigorously defend’ the state’s ban,” reports Calvin Freiburger for Commented Mike Gonidakis, president of Ohio Right to Life, “‘The gruesome nature of dismemberment abortions can’t be denied. … We don’t stand for that sort of treatment of any other living creature, and we won’t stand for it when it’s being done to the most vulnerable among us.’” The LifeSiteNews reporter cites the Cincinnati Enquirer as source for the pro-life leader’s quote.
  • U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE WILLIAM OSTEEN RULED late in March that North Carolina’s 1973-enacted law banning post-20-week abortions is unconstitutional, declaring, reports Calvin Freiburger for, “that the law cannot limit abortions before a child can survive outside the womb.” He stayed his order for 60 days, notes Mr. Freiburger, “so lawmakers could have time to either appeal the ruling or amend the law. The office of North Carolina Atty. General Josh Stein is currently ‘reviewing the decision.’”
  • AN OHIO APPEALS COURT HAS UPHELD the state health department’s order to close Women’s Med Center, an abortuary near Dayton owned and operated by notorious partial-birth abortion pioneer Martin Haskell. The Haskell abortuary, reports Cheryl Sullenger for Operation Rescue, “is one of six abortion facilities in the country that openly conduct abortions throughout all nine months.” The health department’s order stemmed from the abortuary’s failure to secure a hospital transfer agreement as required by state law, providing for emergency treatment of customers whose abortions in some way go awry. Though the abortuary plans to remain in business while appealing to the state’s supreme court, two incidents just since early February demonstrate the wisdom in the state law and in the appeals court ruling. An unconscious woman suffered a seizure after her abortion on Feb. 7, reports Mrs. Sullenger, one which the Haskell staff “could not get under control.” Then just a month later, notes Mrs. Sullenger, the Haskell staff were “obviously unsuccessful” in seeking to halt hemorrhaging after a surgical abortion. Yet Mr. Haskell is determined to keep his shop open.
  • THE NEW JERSEY SUPREME COURT HAS REFUSED to hear an appeal from notorious abortionist Steven Chase Brigham in his attempt to regain his license, revoked in 2014. “This is the end of the line for Brigham’s license appeals,” declared Operation Rescue president Troy Newman in an OR report on the ruling. “He has a documented history of deception, illegal activities and dangerous, corners-cutting practices that reaches back into the 1980s. He is without doubt one of the worst abortionists in America that is not currently in jail.” The New Jersey revocation blocks his “maintaining legal ownership in his seven New Jersey abortion facilities,” notes the OR report. “However, due to a paperwork change, he continues to handle the day-to-day business dealings of his American Women’s Services abortion chain. … There is no word,” reports OR, “on if or when the New Jersey Attorney General’s office will take up the case again concerning the ownership/medical director issues with Brigham’s abortion clinics,” now that his license revocation has been resolved.

Facing Reality but Turning Away

April 9, 2019, Washington Update commentary by Family Research Council president Tony Perkins

            Senate Democrats didn’t look Melissa Ohden in the eye and say they wish she’d never been born. But at today’s Judiciary Committee hearing on the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, they might as well have. For the first time since they voted to make the killing of newborns legal, Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-SC) decided it was time to force the liberals who openly lobbied to destroy lives like Melissa’s to sit and hear her story.

            “I wake up every single day,” Melissa has said, “living with the fact that people somehow want to pass this [radical, New York] kind of legislation that would have ended my life.” [She was not referring to the Pain-Capable Protection Act.] Today, at the “Abortion Until Birth” debate, those same people had the opportunity to look into the eyes of a grown woman who wouldn’t exist if they had their way. And not even that seemed to change their minds [about opposing the Abortion Survivors bill].

            Melissa, who, by a series of profound miracles, survived being burned alive for days by a saline abortion, says she’s known since age 14 that children just like her are “being subjected to similarly horrific, painful abortion procedures that lead to their death.” “I know of 281 others just like me through my work as the founder of The Abortion Survivors Network,” she told the committee, although “statistics say the actual number is much higher.”

            Had her birth mom been in a Planned Parenthood – not a hospital – she’s convinced her life would never have been saved. “I was blessed to be born alive accidentally at a hospital and to have that nurse willing to rush me off from that room into the NICU, because I do believe if I had been born accidentally at Planned Parenthood or another abortion clinic, they would not have done what they needed to do to get me to a place where medical care would have been provided. … I know too much about other people’s experiences to believe … that children like me are always provided immediate medical care. I think we try to make ourselves feel good [by believing] that a child must be immediately saved by those professionals at clinics, but that is not the case.”

            She told a brutal story from 2007, where a child just like her had survived an abortion. The mom, who was only 18 at the time, called 911 from the clinic absolutely panicked about her baby. But by then, it was too late. The child, who was breathing, had already been shoved into “a biohazard bag, where it suffocated to death. The child was then thrown onto the top of the building [like trash] and left on the roof … .”

            As horrifying as that is, Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) pointed out that there are 44 US Senators who wouldn’t do a thing about it. “It’s stunning to consider,” he said, “that one of our nation’s two political parties – a party that once said abortion should be ‘safe, legal and rare’ – uniformly opposes even minimal protections for babies outside the womb. Babies who, like Miss Ohden, have survived an attempted abortion.” The American people understand it, he said, citing overwhelming public polling. Even, at one time, he argued, Democrats did. “The Born-Alive Infants Protection Act of 2002 established that children born following a botched abortion are in fact legal persons for the purposes of federal law. It passed the United States Senate by unanimous consent.”

            That was then. Now, Democrats like Sen. Richard Blumenthal (CT) don’t bat an eye telling survivors like Melissa to their face that efforts to protect them are “doomed and divisive.” Worse, they’re a distraction from “issues of health care that really impact children and women.” But what exactly does he think late-term abortion is, if not an issue that impacts women and children?

            “We hear all of this talk about women’s rights,” a forceful Melissa said later, “but I beg the question: where were my rights in the womb? Where are the rights of the little girls who are going to lose their lives to abortion every single day? Where are my rights now as a woman who survived an abortion? Where are the rights of my daughters who never would have lived if that abortion had succeeded in ending my life?” In the eyes of the new Democratic Party, the answer is simple: they don’t exist.

            At a press conference after the hearing, Family Research Council’s Patrina Mosley joined Members of Congress and other pro-life leaders to call for an end to the bloodshed. Under the Pain-Capable bill, America would outlaw abortion when science tells us babies can feel pain: 20 weeks. It also includes born-alive protections if a child like Melissa survives.

            “Abortion is the greatest human rights violation of our time, and for such a gruesome death to be called ‘health care’ is only dubious marketing from the elite and powerful to accomplish their eugenic purposes,” Patrina argued. “The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act will not only protect innocent lives from an excruciating death but remind Americans how evil and violent abortion is. With science affirming what we already know to be the right thing to do, it’s time we put that knowledge to further use and pass the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.”