Life Advocacy Briefing

May 6, 2024

Is This America? / Another One / Restoring Justice & Mercy
Stateside / Take This to Congress!

Is This America?

WHILE ANTI-AMERICAN ELEMENTS PERSIST in occupying and vandalizing college campuses – and the radical administrators, radical politicians and even radical prosecutors turn a blind eye – the full force of government is being brought to bear against pro-lifers engaged in “peaceful civil disobedience in a traditional pro-life rescue at a late-term abortion facility in Washington, DC,” reports Louis Knuffke for LifeSiteNews.

The incident he points to took place in October of 2020. Nine pro-lifers were charged with violations under the federal Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act. It has come to light that one of the now-convicted rescuers, Heather Idoni, has now “suffered a stroke,” reports Mr. Knuffke, having last fall been held 22 days in solitary confinement as punishment, she told LifeSiteNews, “for sharing food with fellow prisoners.” The rescuers were convicted by the US Dept. of Justice last fall.

“Calvin Zastro, a friend of [Mrs.] Idoni and co-defendant in a Michigan FACE Act trial, told LifeSiteNews,” writes Mr. Knuffke, “that US marshals paraded [Mrs.] Idoni in full shackles into federal court as if the mother of five and adoptive mother of 10 were a dangerous criminal, to the shock of those present, including the judge.”

“[Mrs.] Idoni faces over 50 years of incarceration in federal prison and over $1 million in fines for taking part in several peaceful pro-life rescues in Washington, DC, Michigan and Tennessee,” reports LifeSiteNews. “Should [she] receive maximum penalties in these cases, in which previous counts can be compounded to heighten subsequent sentences, she will have been sentenced to the longest prison term in the history of the US civil disobedience movement for human rights.”

Even a United Nations document, titled UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners, notes Mr. Knuffke, “prohibits solitary confinement ‘in excess of 15 consecutive days,’ deeming it ‘cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.’” And, notes Mr. Knuffke, “according to the International Justice Resource Center, international case law holds that humiliating a prisoner, including detainment in leg irons and handcuffs, which she has also suffered, can qualify as torture or inhumane treatment and a violation of dignity.”


Another One

IF THAT WERE NOT TROUBLING ENOUGH, LifeSiteNews’s Louis Knuffke last week also reported on a letter to Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), chairman of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission (within Congress), by a 74-year-old pro-life activist, Jean Marshall, “begging” the panel “to intervene with the pro-abortion judge who put her behind bars for a peaceful pro-life rescue to allow her an urgently needed hip surgery.”

Ms. Marshall, a registered nurse, notes Mr. Knuffke, “said that just a month before her trial last fall, she was admitted to the hospital ‘for excruciating pain in my hip and an inability to walk.’ Despite a scheduled surgery and medical information from the doctor, the pro-abortion judge, Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, refused any accommodations for [Ms.] Marshall to undergo the needed surgery. Since then, her condition has only worsened, with her right leg feeling numb and her right knee unable to bend, forcing her to drag her right leg when she walks,” reports Mr. Knuffke. Judge Kotelly is a senior judge in the DC Circuit Court of Appeals, appointed by Pres. Bill Clinton.

The prisoner also reported, writes Mr. Knuffke, “that after coming down with pneumonia due to the extreme cold of her cell last fall, she had to wait three weeks before being properly diagnosed. … The withholding of needed medical care for an elderly woman in prison runs contrary not only to basic human rights ethics but also the international standards set forth in the Nelson Mandela Rules,” the nickname of the UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners, cited in our previous item about fellow pro-life prisoner-of-conscience Heather Idoni.

Her right to free exercise of religion is also being abridged by federal authorities. Notes Mr. Knuffke: “[Ms.] Marshall also expressed her desire to once again be able to attend Mass regularly. ‘I also need,’” she wrote to Rep. Smith, “‘to be able to go to church, along with my sister, who has been unable to go since she was placed on house arrest after her conviction and even before her trial.’”


Restoring Justice & Mercy

REP. CHIP ROY (R-TX) HAS FILED HR-5577 TO REPEAL the notorious, biased Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act, under which peaceful pro-life protesters are being prosecuted for seeking to protect unborn children being led to slaughter, rescuing those who are perishing. The bill has 39 co-sponsors and is reposing in the House Committee on the Judiciary.

Co-sponsoring HR-5577 with Rep. Roy are GOP Representatives Barry Moore (AL); Andy Biggs, Elijah Crane, Paul Gosar & Debbie Lesko (AZ); Doug LaMalfa (CA); Ken Buck & Doug Lamborn (CO); Anna Paulina Luna, Gregory Steube & Daniel Webster (FL); Andrew Clyde & Mike Collins (GA); Mary Miller (IL); Jim Banks (IN); Clay Higgins (LA); Eric Burlison (MO); Matthew Rosendale (MT); Adrian Smith (NE); Christopher Smith (NJ); Nicholas Langworthy (NY); David Rouzer (NC); Warren Davidson (OH); Josh Brecheen (OK); Jeff Duncan & William Timmons (SC); Mark Green & Diana Harshbarger (TN); Brian Babin, Michael Burgess, Michael Cloud, Lance Gooden, Nathaniel Moran, August Pfluger and Keith Self (TX); Burgess Owens (UT); Ben Cline & Bob Good (VA); and Alexander Mooney (WV).

We encourage our readers to contact their own Member of Congress and House Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH) and urge passage of HR-5577. Capitol switchboard (House): 202-224-3121.



  • ARIZONA GOV. KATIE HOBBS (D) has signed a bill repealing the state’s long-moribund law which CNN’s Arit John terms a “near-total abortion ban,” which he reports passed just “three weeks after the state supreme court revived the law and thrust reproductive rights into the political spotlight. … Two Republicans … voted with the [the State Senate’s] 14 Democrats to advance the repeal, which passed 16 to 14. The vote comes a week after three Republicans joined with all 29 Democrats in the state House to repeal the law,” notes Mr. John, “which bans abortion at all stages of pregnancy except to save the life of the mother and threatens abortion providers with two-to-five-year prison sentences.” Both former Pres. Donald Trump and the GOP’s US Senate nominee Kari Lake had publicly dismissed the 19th century law once the state’s high court confirmed it could be enforced. “The legislation,” notes Mr. John, “would clear the way for the state’s 15-week limit to remain state law,” which will serve as an interesting test of the efficacy of such a late ban as is being advocated at the federal level by some pro-life leaders and such officials as Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC). Nearly all abortions are committed before their victims have reached 15 weeks gestation.

  • THE KANSAS LEGISLATURE’s OVERRIDES last week of pro-life bill vetoes by Gov. Laura Kelly (D) bring to four the number of such overrides achieved so far this year. The Kansas Senate, by a 27-to-10 vote, on April 29 overrode the veto of a bill to increase income tax credits, reports Calvin Freiburger for LifeSiteNews, “for the costs of adoption [and to] establish new tax credits for donations to charitable organizations that operate pregnancy centers.” The House overrode that veto by 84 to 41. The new law will also, notes Mr. Freiburger, “exempt purchases by pregnancy resource centers and residential maternity facilities from sales taxes.” The same evening, the Senate voted 28 to 10 and the House 85 to 40 to override Gov. Kelly’s veto of legislation establishing a felony “to coerce a pregnant woman to have an abortion via physical or financial threats,” reports LifeSiteNews. That felony carries punishments of imprisonment up to a year and fines ranging from $5,000 to $10,000, “or up to 25 years in jail,” notes Mr. Freiburger, “if the coercion attempt includes stalking, blackmail, criminal threat, domestic battery, kidnapping, assault, human trafficking, rape or other specified acts.” The legislature had previously overridden vetoes of laws “requiring abortionists to ask women their primary reason for seeking abortion and submit the answers to the state without identifying information so it can more accurately gauge why women abort,” reports LifeSiteNews, “and reauthorization for $2 million in grant funding for pro-life pregnancy centers.” Though the state’s supreme court has declared that the state’s constitution protects a “right” to abortion, lawmakers continue to look for legislative workarounds to discourage the practice.

  • THE MISSOURI LEGISLATURE has sent to Gov. Mike Parson (R) a bill to prohibit state tax dollars, reports Matt Lamb for LifeSiteNews, “from going to Planned Parenthood and any other abortion vendor” – not just direct funding for abortion but funding for any other “service” an abortion outfit might offer. “Legislators cited video from Project Veritas,” reports Mr. Lamb, “showing Missouri Planned Parenthood workers coaching an undercover journalist on how to get a 13-year-old girl an abortion in Kansas,” since abortion is illegal in Missouri. “Even though an adult male asking how to get an abortion for a teenage girl would [or should] immediately raise concerns about rape, trafficking and kidnapping, Planned Parenthood was eager to help.” One of the state’s lawmakers, notes Mr. Lamb, “played the video during debate over the bill.” Missouri Right to Life, reports LifeSiteNews, “highlighted Planned Parenthood’s focus on abortion [and] noted the lengthy battle leaders had undertaken to defund the abortion vendor. ‘Prior to 2020, Missouri restricted family planning funds to abortion providers through the budget process,’ the pro-life group wrote. ‘In 2020, Planned Parenthood and others filed suit against that defunding process, and the Missouri Supreme Court agreed that it was unconstitutional but also stated that the defunding could be done by placing the protective pro-life language in statute. Since then, the legislature has attempted to use different language in the budget which has all been found unconstitutional.’” Passing a restriction in non-budgetary law appears to overcome the court’s previous reservations.

  • TENNESSEE LAWMAKERS have sent to GOP Gov. Bill Lee a bill titled “Underage Abortion Trafficking Act,” which, reports Stephen Kokx for LifeSiteNews, “prohibits an adult from recruiting, harboring or transporting a pregnant girl under the age of 18 who is not their child to obtain a chemical or surgical abortion.” The proposal passed along party lines, 74 to 24 in the House and 25 to 4 in the State Senate. “Tennessee Right to Life says the bill is needed,” writes Mr. Kokx, “because Planned Parenthood staffers across the US have been caught admitting they help female minors secure secret abortions without their parent or guardian’s knowledge. ‘Parents have a right to be involved with their daughters’ well-being,’ the group told,” quoted by LifeSiteNews. “‘The abortion industry has no right to transport or obtain dangerous chemicals for underage girls while keeping their parents in the dark.’”

  • ALSO IN TENNESSEE, the legislature has passed – and Gov. Lee has signed – a law requiring schools offering a family life curriculum to incorporate the presentation, reports Sarah Holliday for The Washington Stand, “of ‘a high-quality, computer-generated animation or high-definition ultrasound of at least three minutes in duration that shows the development of the brain, heart, sex organs and other vital organs in early fetal development, such as “Meet Baby Olivia,” a high-quality, computer-generated animation developed by Live Action that shows the process of fertilization and the stages of human development inside the uterus.’” Tennessee joins North Dakota in adopting such helpful legislation. North Dakota’s law has served its families since early 2023. The Tennessee law takes effect this fall, having passed the House by a vote of 67 to 23 and the Senate by 21 to 6.


Take This to Congress!

April 22, 2024, commentary by Mat Staver, chairman, Liberty Counsel

            Shockingly, 213 Members in the US House are pushing for abortion up to birth. Their latest pro-abortion bill also seeks to force every state to remove all commonsense measures – like waiting periods, ultrasounds, informed consent and parental consent laws.

            HR-12 seeks to stop states from setting reasonable health and safety laws intended to force abortion centers to maintain the same cleanliness and safety standards as any other surgical clinic.

            What we have been fighting in Florida’s “anything goes” abortion ballot measure is now being taken up nationally. The so-called “Women’s Health Protection Act” even removes protections that protect women. This bill might as well be named the “Planned Parenthood Protection Act,” and we need your help to defeat it. The vote margins in Congress are incredibly thin. The abortion industry only needs one more vote to win … and some Republicans are being disturbingly quiet.

            Tell Congress: Vote No on HR-12 and S-701. [Capitol switchboard: 202/224-3121]

            When the Dobbs ruling overturned Roe v. Wade, we knew the abortion industry would not go away quietly without a fight. As you know, after our amicus brief was cited by the US Supreme Court in overturning Roe, Liberty Counsel has been fighting the abortion industry’s attempts to make killing an unborn child a “right” in state constitutions across the country. Now the abortion industry is going for a bigger prize – federal legislation to force every state to wipe away all abortion restrictions. The bill even goes so far as to overturn the federal ban on gruesome partial-birth abortion, which murders a viable, full-term baby before its head leaves the mother’s womb.

            Late-term abortion murders viable babies who could, if given the chance, live outside their mother’s womb. In a typical procedure, everything except for the baby’s head is outside the mother’s body. Then, just before the child’s head comes out, the abortionist drives a spike through the child’s skull, literally scrambling the baby’s brain to kill the child. Instead of a spike to the brain, some abortionists, like the demonic Kermit Gosnell, use heavy duty scissors to sever the child’s spinal cord once the legs, torso and neck – but not the head – are outside the birth canal.

            Late-term abortion is beyond barbaric, and it’s hard to believe that nearly half of Congress wants to overturn the 1992 federal ban on this horrific practice. But as we saw in the undercover videos our client Sandra Merritt filmed, Planned Parenthood makes big money from abortions. That’s so Planned Parenthood can get higher prices in its human organ trafficking scheme, selling baby hearts, livers and spleens to the highest bidders.

            In addition to the obscenities mentioned above, HR-12 and its Senate companion S-701, are outrageous. Section 2.8 asserts that abortion creates “better maternal bonding.” How, I wonder, does a woman “better bond” with a dead child?

            Section 2.11 claims that state abortion bans prevent women from receiving “potentially lifesaving treatment for ectopic pregnancies and miscarriage management.” But that is a bald-faced lie! Treatment for ectopic pregnancies and miscarriages is not the same procedure as an abortion, and nowhere in the US have those lifesaving treatments been banned.

            Section 2.17 claims that abortion bans cause a loss of “liberty, dignity, bodily autonomy, equality, due process, privacy, health and freedom from cruel and inhumane treatment.” But again, at least one person in the abortion scheme loses every time. And having one’s brains scrambled, spine severed and/or arms and legs unceremoniously yanked off before the head leaves the womb seems to me to be the ultimate in “inhumane treatment.”

            Section 2.20 states, “Abortion is one of the safest medical procedures in the United States.” But abortion is never safe for the child. With each abortion performed, at least one person winds up dying.

            But perhaps most eye-popping of the federal abortion bill’s demonstrably false claims is found in Sections 2.12 and 2.13. In those sections, the abortion advocates claim that abortion bans are racist in nature and primarily hurt minorities. In overturning Roe, the Supreme Court referenced Liberty Counsel’s amicus brief that detailed the racist, eugenic origins of the abortion movement, as well as the ongoing genocide of black and brown children through abortion.

            Section 2.12 claims that access to abortion “has always been deficient in the United States for Black, Indigenous, Latina/x, Asian-American & Pacific Islander and people of color (BIPOC) and their families.” But that is a lie!

            Margaret Sanger’s writings show quite clearly that she wanted to stop the proliferation of black and poor people, whom she deemed the “human weeds” of society. Further, the overwhelming majority of abortion clinics are in black and brown neighborhoods, revealing the specific demographic Planned Parenthood and its allies are targeting.

            Further, the Section claims that abortion is “reproductive justice” and that creating the right to kill a child will somehow make up for the “forcible removal of Indigenous children” that happened in the 19th century.

            Section 2 reveals this bill’s insanity. Section 3 lowers the boom.

            In Sec. 3, the bill states that any and all restrictions, or any and all rules, laws and policies that might delay an abortion must be erased. That means that ultrasound laws, which have saved many children, will be eliminated. Parental rights also will be eliminated. Sec. 3 also insists that state and local regulations that force abortion clinics to meet the same health and safety standards as any other surgical center should be abolished. Any law that could make abortion “more difficult to access” would be gone.

            The bill states that any restriction based on the age of the unborn child must be overturned. Laws like Florida’s “Heartbeat Law” and even the federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban will be overturned, and unlimited abortion-on-demand-up-until-birth will be the law of this American land.

            So, who is really being “protected” in this bill? Section 2.10 admits what this bill is really about. It claims that abortion bans reduce patient access to healthcare services including “contraceptive services,” “sexually transmitted disease testing” and “LGBTQ” services. In other words, it refers to the services Planned Parenthood offers in addition to its primary profit center – baby killing.

             HR-12 has 213 co-sponsors which means the pro-abortion crowd only needs to convince one Republican to vote their way to make unlimited abortion the law of the land. Congress needs to hear from you now, demanding they hold the line against Planned Parenthood and its baby-killing schemes. Tell Congress to vote “no” on HR-12 and S-701.