Category archives: Abortion

The Real Margaret Sanger

by Arina Grossu

October 18, 2016

This article first appeared on May 5, 2014 in the Washington Times. It is reposted here as a reminder of Margaret Sanger’s legacy in lieu of Planned Parenthood’s 100th year anniversary since Sanger opened her first illegal birth control clinic on October 16, 1916 in Brooklyn, New York.

Recent articles have reported on an unearthed video from 1947 of Margaret Sanger demanding “no more babies” for ten years in developing countries. A couple of years ago Margaret Sanger was named one of TIME’s “20 Most Influential Americans of All Time.” Given her enduring influence, it’s worth considering what the woman who founded Planned Parenthood contributed to the eugenics movement.

Sanger shaped the eugenics movement in America and beyond in the 1930s and 1940s. Her views and those of her peers in the movement contributed to compulsory sterilization laws in thirty U.S. states that resulted in more than 60,000 sterilizations of vulnerable people, including people she considered “feeble-minded,” “idiots,” and “morons.”

She even presented at a Ku Klux Klan rally in 1926 in Silver Lake, New Jersey. She recounted this event in her autobiography: “I accepted an invitation to talk to the women’s branch of the Ku Klux Klan … I saw through the door dim figures parading with banners and illuminated crosses … I was escorted to the platform, was introduced, and began to speak … In the end, through simple illustrations I believed I had accomplished my purpose. A dozen invitations to speak to similar groups were proffered” (Margaret Sanger: “An Autobiography,” p. 366). That she generated enthusiasm among some of America’s leading racists says something about the content and tone of her remarks.

In a letter to Dr. Clarence Gamble in 1939, Sanger wrote: “We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population and the minister is the man who can straighten out that idea if it ever occurs to any of their more rebellious members” (Margaret Sanger commenting on the ‘Negro Project’ in a letter to Dr. Clarence Gamble, December 10, 1939).

Her own words and television appearances leave no room for parsing. For example, she wrote many articles about eugenics in the journal she founded in 1917, the Birth Control Review. Her articles included “Some Moral Aspects of Eugenics” (June 1920), “The Eugenic Conscience” (February 1921), “The Purpose of Eugenics” (December 1924), “Birth Control and Positive Eugenics” (July 1925) and “Birth Control: The True Eugenics” (August 1928), to name a few.

The following are some of her more telling quotes:

While I personally believe in the sterilization of the feeble-minded, the insane and syphilitic, I have not been able to discover that these measures are more than superficial deterrents when applied to the constantly growing stream of the unfit. They are excellent means of meeting a certain phase of the situation, but I believe in regard to these, as in regard to other eugenic means, that they do not go to the bottom of the matter” (Margaret Sanger, “Birth Control and Racial Betterment,” February 1919, The Birth Control Review).

Eugenics without Birth Control seems to us a house builded upon the sands. It is at the mercy of the rising stream of the unfit” (Margaret Sanger, “Birth Control and Racial Betterment,” February 1919, The Birth Control Review).

Stop our national habit of human waste” (Margaret Sanger, “Woman and the New Race,” 1920, Ch. 6).

By all means there should be no children when either mother or father suffers from such diseases as tuberculosis, gonorrhea, syphilis, cancer, epilepsy, insanity, drunkenness and mental disorders. In the case of the mother, heart disease, kidney trouble and pelvic deformities are also a serious bar to childbearing … No more children should be born when the parents, though healthy themselves, find that their children are physically or mentally defective” (Margaret Sanger, “Woman and the New Race,” 1920, Ch. 7).

The main objects of the Population Congress would be … to apply a stern and rigid policy of sterilization and segregation to that grade of population whose progeny is tainted, or whose inheritance is such that objectionable traits may be transmitted to offspring[;] to give certain dysgenic groups in our population their choice of segregation or sterilization” (Margaret Sanger, “A Plan for Peace,” 1932).

In a 1957 interview with Mike Wallace, Margaret Sanger revealed: “I think the greatest sin in the world is bringing children into the world—that have disease from their parents, that have no chance in the world to be a human being practically. Delinquents, prisoners, all sorts of things just marked when they’re born. That to me is the greatest sin—that people can—can commit.”

This line of thinking from its founder has left lasting marks on the legacy of Planned Parenthood. For example, 79 percent of Planned Parenthood’s surgical abortion facilities are located within walking distance of black or Hispanic communities.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Abortion Surveillance report revealed that between 2007 and 2010, nearly 36 percent of all abortions in the U.S. were performed on black children, even though black Americans make up only 13 percent of our population. Another 21 percent of abortions were performed on Hispanics and seven percent more on other minority groups, for a total of 64 percent of U.S. abortions tragically preformed on minority groups. Margaret Sanger would have been proud of the effects of her legacy.

FRC Submits Public Comment with March for Life, Susan B. Anthony List, and Charlotte Lozier Institute Opposing Obama’s New HHS Title X Planned Parenthood Rule

by Andrew Guernsey

October 7, 2016

The Obama administration’s Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued a new proposed regulation blocking states from defunding Planned Parenthood from federal Title X family planning funds.

Family Research Council submitted public comment today with the Susan B. Anthony List, the Charlotte Lozier Institute, and the March for Life Education and Defense Fund, urging HHS to reconsider and rescind this harmful regulation, which would effectively create a backdoor handout for the abortion industry.

You can read those comments in full here.

Celebrating 40 Years of the Hyde Amendment and Rep. Henry Hyde, A Pro-Life Hero

by Arina Grossu , Andrew Guernsey

September 30, 2016

Today marks the 40th anniversary of the Hyde Amendment, which prevents federal funding for abortion. As a result of the Hyde Amendment, over 2 million Americans are alive today. To learn more see this op-ed in The Federalist and watch FRC Action’s new ad.

Rep. Henry Hyde (R-IL) was a tireless warrior for preborn babies, as this transcript clearly depicts. In 1976, only three years after Roe v. Wade legalized abortion, he introduced the Hyde Amendment to stop taxpayer funding of abortion. From 1973 to 1977, the federal government spent about $50 million annually to fund about 300,000 abortions per year under Medicaid. He wanted to put an end to this, saying we “cannot in logic and conscience help fund the execution of these innocent, defenseless human lives.”

The Hyde Amendment is one of the spending bills Congress must pass each year. It has been renewed every year since and signed into law by both Republican and Democrat presidents. In 1980, the Supreme Court upheld the Hyde Amendment in the 5-4 Harris v. McRae landmark decision. Hillary Clinton has promised to make repealing the Hyde Amendment a key priority if she becomes president. In addition, this year’s Democratic Party platform for the first time ever called for its repeal. In contrast, Donald Trump has pledged to make the Hyde Amendment permanent. Congress must enact the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act (H.R. 7, S. 582) to codify the Hyde Amendment and to apply it across the government, including Obamacare.

Below, we reprint from the Congressional Record, Rep. Henry Hyde’s remarks when he first introduced his famous amendment in 1976, and again in 1977. Hyde’s remarks show his incredible passion not only to stop the taxpayer funding of abortion, but also to end all killing of preborn babies.

Thank you Rep. Henry Hyde for standing up for the rights of unborn babies, and happy anniversary to the Hyde Amendment that has saved over 2 million lives.


Congressional Record

June 24, 1976

Mr. HYDE Mr. Chairman, I offer an amendment.

The Clerk read as follows:

Amendment offered by Mr. HYDE: On page 36, after line 9, add the following new section:

Sec. 209. None of the funds appropriated under this Act shall be used to pay for abortions or to promote or encourage abortions.”

Mr. HYDE. Mr. Chairman, this amendment may stimulate a lot of debate—but it need not—because I believe most Members know how they will vote on this issue. 

Nevertheless, there are those of us who believe it Is to the everlasting shame of this country that in 1973 approximately 800,000 legal abortions were performed in this country—and so it is fair to assume that this year over a million human lives will be destroyed because they are inconvenient to someone.

The unborn child facing an abortion can best be classified as a member of the innocently inconvenient and since the pernicious doctrine that some lives are more important than others seems to be persuasive with the pro-abortion forces, we who seek to protect that most defenseless and innocent of human lives, the unborn—seek to inhibit the use of Federal funds to pay for and thus encourage abortion as an answer to the human and compelling problem of an unwanted child.

We are all exercised at the wanton killing of the porpoise, the baby seal. We urge big game hunters to save the tiger, but we somehow turn away at the specter of a million human beings being violently destroyed because this great society does not want them.

And make no mistake, an abortion is violent.

I think in the final analysis, you must determine whether or not the unborn person is human. If you think it is animal or vegetable then of course, it is disposable like an empty beer can to be crushed and thrown out with the rest of the trash.

But medicine, biology, embryology say that growing living organism is not animal or vegetable or mineral – but it is a human life.

 And if you believe that human life is deserving of due process of law—of equal protection of the laws, then you cannot in logic and conscience help fund the execution of these innocent defenseless human lives.

If we are to order our lives by the precepts of animal husbandry, then I guess abortion is an acceptable answer. If we human beings are not of a higher order than animals then let us save our pretentious aspirations for a better and more just world and recognize this is an anthill we inhabit and there are no such things as ideals or justice or morality.

Once conception has occurred a new and unique genetic package has been created, not a potential human being but a human being with potential. For nine months the mother provides nourishment and shelter, and birth is no substantial change, it is merely a change of address.

We are told that bringing an unwanted child into the world is an obscene act. Unwanted by whom? Is it too subtle a notion to understand it is more important to be a loving person than to be one who is loved? We need more people who are capable of projecting love.

We hear the claim that the poor are denied a right available to other women if we do not use tax money to fund abortions. 

Well make a list of all the things society denies poor women and let them make the choice of what we will give them.

Don’t say “poor woman, go destroy your young, and we will pay for it.”

An innocent, defenseless human life, in a caring and humane society deserves better than to be flushed down a toilet or burned in an incinerator.

The promise of America is that life is not just for the privileged, the planned, or the perfect.


Hyde Amendment Passes, Roll Call: 207-167 (57 Not Voting)

Congressional Record, House, Vol. 122, pt. 15, 20410 



June 17, 1977


Mr. HYDE. Mr. Chairman, I offer an amendment.

The Clerk read as follows:

Amendment offered by Mr. Hyde:

On page 39, after line 23. add the following new section:

Sec. 209. None of the funds appropriated under this Act shall be used to pay for abortions or to promote or encourage abortions.”

 (By unanimous consent. Mr. HYDE was allowed to proceed for 5 additional minutes.)

Mr. HYDE. Mr. Chairman, I regret that I must abbreviate this amendment to exclude the therapeutic abortion qualification, the absence of which was raised as a great argument against this amendment when it was offered last session. So it went through with no exceptions whatsoever. And in the conference committee we were able to put in the therapeutic abortion exemption where the claim for a life is equal to a claim for a life. But I am forced into this position today by points of order. So be it.

Yesterday, remarks were made that it is unfortunate to burden an appropriations bill with complex issues, such as busing, abortion and the like. I certainly agree that it is very unfortunate. The problem Is that there is no other vehicle that reaches this floor in which these complex issues can be involved. Constitutional amendments which prohibit abortions stay languishing in subcommittee much less committee, and so the only vehicle where the Members may work their will, unfortunately, is an appropriation bill. I regret that. I certainly would like to prevent, if I could legally, anybody having an abortion, a rich woman, a middle-class woman, or a poor woman. Unfortunately, the only vehicle available is the HEW Medicaid bill. A life is a life. The life of a little ghetto kid is just as important as the life of a rich person. And so we proceed in this bill.

Lest anyone think it is aberrational that millions of people are concerned about our tax dollars paying for the slaughter of innocent, inconvenient, unborn children, I point out that this Is no novel position. In most every session. There is a bill, HR 4897 this session, which provides that a taxpayer conscientiously opposed to participation in war may elect that his income, estate, or gift tax payments be spent for nonmilitary purposes. This creates a trust fund, the world peace tax fund. 

Many people, I am sure, who will speak today against my position, the pro-life position, are vigorous supporters of H.R. 4897.

But if it is wrong to spend money for defense of this country, then may we not object to spending millions of tax dollars for the slaughter of innocent children?

I think it is important to clarify the constitutional issue that is involved in this question. In the first place, conceding that under Roe against Wade a woman has a constitutional right to seek an abortion, the question here is whether it is mandatory that the taxpayers pay for that abortion.

The Washington Star’s editorial last Tuesday put this issue in perspective when it said:

The glib argument that it is a denial of the 14th Amendment equal protection to deny Medicaid subsidy to abortions strikes us as overingenious.

This Government, through the National Endowment for the Humanities subsidizes writers all over the country. Is it then a burden on our first amendment rights to free expression to deny a tax -paid printing press to everyone in the street who wants one? Clearly not.

The Solicitor General of the United States said this:

There Is no right to receive an abortion. The privacy right vindicated in Roe v. Wade and Doe v Bolton Is not the right affirmatively to obtain an abortion, but rather the lesser right to be free to seek abortion services without governmental obstruction or Interference. The Government has no constitutional obligation financially to facilitate the exercise of privacy rights. Its constitutional duty Is merely to refrain from violating such rights.

We spend about $50 million a year to pay for about 300,000 abortions under Medicaid. The contention has been made by respectable sources that it costs too much to bring these welfare kids into the world, it is much cheaper to abort them. This argument even the Washington Post said was terrible and inhumane.

One of the “Dear Colleague” letters that came from a distinguished Member of this body called the paying of the bill for the welfare kids “economic imprudence.” Well, I cannot accept that argument.

We have heard both sides of the argument: If we deny Medicaid abortions, the women are going to have kids anyway; therefore, let them have abortions in a safe place. The other side of the argument is: If we deny Medicaid abortions, we are going to have an explosion of welfare children, and it is going to cost us a lot of money. Which way is it? Are we going to have a lot of costly welfare kids or are women going to get their abortions anyway? As far as I am concerned, every welfare study I have seen shows these children will be born and not slaughtered, and I am prepared to pay the price to see that they get an education, decent housing, and adequate clothing.

I have read every pro-abortion editorial I can lay my hands on and every article I could find, and they all emphasize that the decent and economic and compassionate thing to do is to let these welfare mothers abort their unborn children. Never do they discuss the essential question, the humanity of the unborn.”

What is it that is being aborted? Is it a chicken? Is it a tumor? Is it animal? Is it vegetable? Is it mineral? Is it a bad tooth to be pulled out, or is it a diseased appendix to be cut out and thrown away? No. It is a human being.

Theology does not say it is a human being; biology says it is a human being. Theology does not say, “Thou shalt not kill a fetus”; it is biology that says “Thou shalt not kill a fetus.” That is a part of the tradition and the criminal code subscribed to on the part of individuals in every civilized nation. This is what biology says. Let us quit kidding ourselves. This is human life.

Mr. Chairman, let me read a quotation from the California Medical Association Journal. This is not a religious publication, I assure the Members. In an editorial the California Medical Association said as follows:

… It has been necessary to separate the idea of abortion from the idea of killing, which continues to be socially abhorrent. The result has been a curious avoidance of the scientific fact which everyone really knows, that human life begins at conception and is continuous whether intra- or extra- uterine until death. The very considerable semantic gymnastics which are required to rationalize abortion as anything but taking a human life would be ludicrous if they were not often put forth under socially impeccable auspices.

So why do we not face up that abortion does not merely “terminate a pregnancy” nor remove the “products of conception” from a deactivated womb? It is the calculated killing of an innocent, inconvenient human being.

The old argument that we who oppose abortion are trying to impose our religious concepts on other people is totally absurd. Theology does not animate me; biology does. That is a human life; that is not a potential human life; it is a human life with potential.

When a pregnant woman, who should be the natural protector of her unborn child, becomes its deadly adversary, then it is the duty of this legislature to intervene on behalf of defenseless human life.

If that is not so, I do not know why we need this building or why we need law libraries.

By what right do the pro-abortionists seek to deny us access to the political process? That is what we are engaged in today. If they say we have no right to seek to get written into law protection for innocent life, if they say, “No” to us, they turn back 200 years of this country’s history.

I used to think that abortionists had a world view of humanity as animalistic, and that these people feel that the rules of animal husbandry are sufficient to cope with the problems of poverty and need in the ghetto. But I am wrong. I am absolutely wrong.

We think more of animals than we do of human beings. Do the Members realize that today is Whale Survival Day? Today, June 17, in Lafayette Park, there is going to be music, there will be celebrities and whale experts, and there will be whale art, and this is all done in the campaign to save the endangered whale.

There is some kind of schizophrenia that makes us want to protect the snail darter, the baby harp seal, the whale, and the dolphin, and not to be concerned about human life and our unborn children. In our wisdom and compassion, we put a limit on the number of dolphins that can be eliminated; that number is 69,910. You kill one more, and you go to the slammer. But there is no limit on the number of unborn children that are slaughtered simply because they are inconvenient. 

We now what a dolphin can do. It can jump through a hoop and eat a guppie. But somehow that is more important to this Congress and more important than human beings.

Under the Bald Eagle Protection Act of 1940 it is a crime to take possession of a bald eagle’s egg. That seems to be more important than a human life.

Is it not sad that we give more concern to the protection of migratory birds and wild horses than we do to human beings?

The CHAIRMAN. The time of the gentleman from Illinois (MR. HYDE) has expired.

(By unanimous consent, MR. HYDE was allowed to proceed for 1 additional minute.)

Mr. HYDE. I just want to make this comment, Mr. Chairman: We can tell the ghetto mother that she is going to have to fight for everything which the middle-class woman has, such as education, housing, clothing, and food; but then we can say, “We will give you one thing. We will give it to you and we will pay for it. We will let you kill your young.”

Mr. Chairman, the problem of the unwanted child is a human problem. The violent act of abortion is no solution. It is the failure to look for a solution.

Mr. Chairman, I was in Jerusalem recently. I visited a building complex to memorialize the 6 million dead in the holocaust. It is called the Yad Vashem. There is a legend there from the Talmud. It says, “He who saves one soul saves humanity.”

Mr. Chairman, I ask the Members to think about that when they vote on my amendment.


Hyde Amendment Passes, Roll Call: 201-155 (77 Not Voting)

Congressional Record, House, vol. 123, pt. 16, 19700–19701

Testimony on the Need for the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act

by Arina Grossu

September 23, 2016

Arina Grossu’s Testimony before the House Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice on the topic of the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act on September 23, 2016:

Chairman Franks, Ranking Member Cohen, and Distinguished Members of the Subcommittee:

I am grateful and honored to have been invited to testify on “The Ultimate Civil Right: Examining the Hyde Amendment and the Born Alive Infants Protection Act.”  My name is Arina Grossu and I am the Director of the Center for Human Dignity at the Family Research Council.  As a policy analyst, my issues of expertise and research encompass the dignity of human life from conception until natural death. 

FRC has long supported the Hyde Amendment, which has prevented government funding for elective abortion for over thirty years.  This law, if revoked, would increase the number of abortions in the U.S.  FRC also supports the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act, on which I will focus my remarks.

In 2000 and 2001, Jill Stanek testified before this Committee about her experience as a registered nurse where she discovered babies born alive after an attempted abortion and left to die in the department’s soiled utility closet.

In 2002, Congress responded by passing the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, which was signed by President George W. Bush and is current federal law. It passed by voice vote in the House and with unanimous consent in the Senate.  

Unfortunately, incidents involving born alive children being killed after an attempted abortion have continued after this law was passed and into the present.

Infanticide is unacceptable in a civilized society, regardless of what one may think about abortion itself.  It should be uncontroversial for the federal government to supplement current law with enforcement protections.


Up to 2010, abortionist Kermit Gosnell operated his dirty and dangerous abortion facility where  he did “hundreds of snippings” of born-alive babies as part of his abortion process.  The Grand Jury Report noted:

Many of [the women] gave birth before he even got there. When you perform late-term ‘abortions’ by inducing labor, you get babies. Live, breathing, squirming babies…Gosnell had a simple solution for the unwanted babies he delivered: he killed them… by sticking scissors into the back of the baby’s neck and cutting the spinal cord.

See for example the image of Baby Boy B who was found in his facility (A). (warning, graphic content)

Federal and state authorities finally raided his facility, not because he was illegally killing born-alive infants, but because of his illegal prescription drug activity.

While Gosnell’s case was particularly gruesome, he is not an outlier.  A former employee of current Texas abortionist Douglas Karpen described how he regularly killed babies born alive by snipping their spinal cords, fatally injuring them with blows to the soft spot on their heads, and twisting their necks. 

She said:

I’m pretty sure I was seeing at least three or four [large babies] that were completely delivered in some way or another [daily].

….when the fetus would come completely out, of course the fetus would still be alive, because it was still moving… of course you could see the stomach breathing and that’s when he would do [this].

Yet, despite the gruesome photo and eyewitness evidence, Karpen was cleared in December 2013.

The Center for Medical Progress, in its investigative videos, authenticated by in-depth forensic analysis, revealed a lot of evidence of babies killed after being born alive.

Perrin Larton, a procurement manager from Advanced Bioscience Resources said, “The whole point is not to have a live birth…“I literally have had women come in and they’ll go in the O.R. and they’re back out in three minutes, and I’m going, ‘What’s going on?’ Oh yeah, the fetus was already in the vaginal canal whenever we put her in the stirrups. It just fell out.”

Holly O’Donnell, a former procurement technician with StemExpress, recounted one incident where her supervisor said, ‘want to see something kind of cool…And she just tap[ped] the heart, and it start[ed] beating. And I’m sitting here and I’m looking at this fetus, and its heart is beating.”

Data that the CDC collects also confirms babies are born alive after attempted abortions.  Between the years 2003 and 2014 there were somewhere between 376 and 588 infant deaths under the medical code P96.4 which keeps track of babies born alive after a “termination of pregnancy.”

The CDC concluded that of the 588 babies, 143 were “definitively” born alive after an attempted abortion and they lived from minutes to one or more days, with 48% of the babies living between one to four hours.  It also admitted that it’s possible the number is an underestimate (B).

We know it is an underestimate because these are just reported numbers from hospitals, not abortion facilities.  Gosnell is only one abortionist who was responsible for “hundreds of snippings” of born-alive babies, yet he did not report even one.  His numbers alone exceed the “definitive” numbers of the CDC.

Even one baby born alive after an attempted abortion who is then killed, is one too many.  But we are talking in the hundreds of reported ones.

Yet not one person to date has been charged or convicted under current Born-Alive law.

Due to developments in technology, babies who are considered “extremely preterm” can now survive outside the womb as early as 20 and 21 weeks post-fertilization, recent science journals announced, with 67% surviving after receiving active care.

Here, for example is Lucas Moore who was born prematurely at 21 weeks post-fertilization and one year later (C).

Dr. David Burchfield, the chief of neonatology at the University of Florida said of care for extremely preterm babies, “It confirms that if you don’t do anything, these babies will not make it, and if you do something, some of them will make it.”

We need the proposed Born-Alive act to ensure that babies born alive after an attempted abortion are given the proper medical treatment.  The bill:

  • explicitly requires health care practitioners to treat born-alive abortion survivors with the same care they would treat any other born baby and admit such babies immediately to a hospital. 
  • provides enforcement mechanisms such as criminal sanctions and penalties to hold abortionists accountable for killing born-alive infants
  • the bill also expressly excludes any prosecution of the mother of a baby born alive, and it gives her a private right of action to seek relief if an abortionist were to kill her born-alive infant.

The White House promised that the President would veto the Born-Alive legislation citing it would have a “chilling” effect.  I cannot think of a more chilling effect than continuing to let U.S. abortionists get away with infanticide.

Born-alive babies after an attempted abortion are already recognized as legal persons since the 2002 federal Born-Alive law.

The proposed Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act simply recognizes the obligations that follow from this reality, to ensure that babies born alive after attempted abortions will be given the best medical care available and the full and equal protection of our laws.

I earnestly ask that you support this bill to stop infanticide in the United States.

Simone Biles Would Have Been Planned Parenthood’s Perfect Target

by Arina Grossu

August 12, 2016

By now you’ve probably seen or heard about the best female gymnast that ever lived, Simone Biles. She is wowing everyone at the Olympics this summer. Simone Biles’ margin of victory is 2.1, larger than the margins of victory from 1980 to 2012 combined. She’s already won gold for team and individual all-around at Rio Olympics. All this girl does is win:

Not only is she the first female gymnast since 1974 to win four consecutive all-around titles at the U.S. national championships, but she’s also the first woman ever to be the all-around world champion three years in a row. Not to mention that she’s won fourteen total world championships medals-the most ever won by an American woman.”

Recently it came to light that Simone Biles was born in March 1997 in Columbus, Ohio to Shannon Biles, who at the time was an “unfit” drug and alcohol addict and who was unable to take care of Simone and her younger sister Adria. Their father, who also struggled with addictions, abandoned Shannon and was not part of the children’s life. They were shuffled back and forth between her mom’s house and foster care for her first three years of life. When she was three years old, her maternal grandfather, Ron, and his second wife, Nellie, brought Simone and her sister to Spring, Texas, which is a suburb of Houston. When Simone was six years old, they officially adopted the girls, becoming “mom and dad.” Her adoption story is well-documented here.

NBC Olympics describes Biles as “fearless, teaching herself to do back flips off her family’s mailbox before she even took a gymnastics class. It was a daycare field trip to a gym that led her to the sport—the six-year-old saw the older girls flipping and twisting and immediately started copying them.”

The instructors suggested she continue doing gymnastics. As the story goes, “she returned home with an information packet and a single, insistent demand: enroll me at the gym.” Biles then enrolled in an optional training program at Bannon’s Gymnastix at age six. This was late by competitive standards, since most aspiring gymnasts start as soon as they can walk. She began her training with Aimee Boorman at eight years of age, her coach now of eleven years. And the rest is history.

Her story are what fairy tales are made of. We love the underdog. We love stories of human strength that defy all odds.

Yet, she would have been the perfect target of Planned Parenthood. It’s no secret that Planned Parenthood targets blacks and minorities: 79% of Planned Parenthood’s surgical abortion facilities are located within walking distance of African American or Hispanic/Latino neighborhoods, according to 2010 U.S. Census data.

LiveAction also revealed that Planned Parenthood accepts money for aborting black babies.

Black women make up only 13% of the female population in the United States, but they undergo approximately 28% of the abortions. In the U.S., black children are aborted at nearly four times the rate of white children. In fact, one in three black babies are killed in the womb. Simone Biles seems to have defied the odds in more ways than at first glance.

Margaret Sanger, founder of what is now known as Planned Parenthood, would have wanted women like Shannon never to have children. In her 1920 book “Woman and the New Race”, Sanger said, “By all means, there should be no children when either mother or father suffers from such diseases as tuberculosis, gonorrhea, syphilis, cancer, epilepsy, insanity, drunkenness and mental disorders.”

In a 1957 interview with Mike Wallace, Sanger mused: “I think the greatest sin in the world is bringing children into the world, that have disease from their parents, that have no chance in the world to be a human being practically… Delinquents, prisoners, all sorts of things just marked when they’re born. That to me is the greatest sin-that people can-can commit.”

By Sanger and Planned Parenthood’s standard, Simone Biles would have been eliminated.

Yet Simone Biles stands before us, a marvel of a human being, having beat the odds. This is the constant message of the pro-life movement. No one, absolutely no one, is beyond hope or possibility. Each unborn child deserves the right to life, even when the circumstances seem dire. How many others like Simone Biles who would have started from less-than-ideal circumstances but were not even given a chance at life? How many Olympians, presidents, politicians, and artists have we aborted? Fifty-nine million babies with infinite potential have been aborted in the U.S. since Roe v. Wade in 1973. Without the fundamental right to life, no other rights or potentialities are possible.

Simone Biles’ story also highlights the power of adoption. Every child is a wanted child, whether by her biological family or by someone else. Simone’s biological mother spoke of her deep admiration for Simone’s adoptive mother saying, “It takes a hell of a woman to raise her husband’s child’s children. I’m very blessed and thankful for that. It was the right thing at the time.”

While Simone Biles has undeniable exceptional talent, her worth does not come even from her talent. It comes from the fact that she is human. All people are valuable and necessary, not because of what they do, but because they simply are. Yet, we can also rejoice and marvel at the beauty, strength, and talent of Olympian athletes like Simone Biles who demonstrate for us the peak of athletic human excellence. 

We’re glad you’re here Simone and we’re glad for adoption. The world would, literally, not be the same without you.

Arina O. Grossu, M.A. is the director for the Center for Human Dignity at the Family Research Council, where she focuses on sanctity of human life issues, ranging from conception to natural death.

Illinois Governor Signs Bill Forcing Pregnancy Care Centers to Refer for Abortions

by Andrew Guernsey

August 3, 2016

Could you imagine a law forcing a vegetarian store clerk to tell customers about the benefits of eating meat and then to refer them to Burger King? A new Illinois law does worse than this—it forces pro-life doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and even the state’s 51 pregnancy care centers to become abortion advocates and escorts to abortion clinics like Planned Parenthood for the killing of innocent human life. Far from leaving abortion to the privacy of a woman and her doctor as pro-abortion politicians would have us believe, the new Illinois law tells pro-life health care personnel what to say and do.

Late last week, Illinois’ Republican governor Bruce Rauner signed the draconian and anti-religious freedom bill, SB 1564, despite not receiving a single Republican vote. The law forces pro-life doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and even pregnancy care centers, who object to abortion, to tell their patients about the alleged “benefits” of abortion and abortifacient drugs, against all evidence to the contrary, and then to refer or transfer those patients to an abortionist, or provide written information about where they can obtain an abortion or abortion inducing drugs or devices. Victims of illegal pro-abortion hospital policies like Illinois nurse Sandra Mendoza, who was forced out of her long-time job in June 2016 as a pediatric nurse for refusing to participate in abortion, will also no longer be able to sue under the state’s Health Care Right of Conscience Act.

Anti-religious freedom initiatives like Illinois’ pro-abortion law are spreading in liberal states around the country, emboldened by the Health and Human Services’ (HHS) refusal to enforce the federal conscience law, known as the Weldon Amendment, to stop California and New York from forcing even churches to cover abortion. Illinois’ new abortion promotion and referral law directly violates the federal conscience law (the Weldon Amendment), which prohibits any state that receives federal funding from conducting “discrimination on the basis that the health care entity does not provide, pay for, provide coverage of, or refer for abortions.” This harmful, anti-life discrimination must not stand!

Thankfully, there is meaningful legislation waiting for a vote in the Senate, and has already passed the House, which would provide pro-life health care providers relief from the new Illinois law: the Conscience Protection Act (S. 2927, “CPA”), introduced by Sen. James Lankford (R-OK). CPA would codify the Weldon Amendment and provide a critical private right of action so that health care providers and organizations facing discrimination in any state for refusing to participate in abortion can sue in court to protect their conscience rights. In light of HHS’ refusal to enforce the law in California and now Illinois, the Senate should follow the House’s example and pass CPA. The pro-life doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and pregnancy centers of Illinois deserve to have their rights protected.

Question of the Week - August 1, 2016

by Daniel Hart

August 1, 2016

Question: How do I explain to my friends that the Susan Komen Foundation isn’t as great as they seem to think? They also think that Planned Parenthood is good because they say they do a lot of good things for women that don’t have insurance. I just want to know the right things to say so they don’t get mad when I disagree agree with their donations and planned fundraisers.

FRC: We’re encouraged to know that you are willing to discuss these important issues with your friends. Thanks for taking a stand!

Former Komen Vice President Karen Handel gave a lecture at FRC on this very topic. She has also authored a book explaining the full story.

The following may also be helpful as you talk to your friends:

Finally, the following links should be helpful as you research and share facts about Planned Parenthood:

Question of the Week - July 18, 2016

by Daniel Hart

July 18, 2016

Question: Ok, so the House passed the Conscience Protection Act last week. Doesn’t the Senate have to do so as well, and then the President sign it? If Obama vetoes, will there be an override? If the above is true, why is FRC so happy at this point?

FRC: The Senate does have to pass the Conscience Protection Act (CPA). We don’t have the votes to override a veto by President Obama. However, this is the first time since 2004 that Congress has voted on conscience. This CPA vote gets members on record. In addition, if the Senate passes CPA, it builds momentum and puts pressure on President Obama. Finally, if support for CPA remains in Congress, then it hopefully has a strong chance of becoming law if we have a pro-life president in the future.

Question of the Week - June 28, 2016

by Daniel Hart

June 28, 2016

Question: I don’t understand how [The Supreme Court’s Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt decision] is an attack on women or children. It seems this ruling was intended to remove burdensome obstacles for women needing a safe and legal medical procedure. There seems to be a disconnect between what you find safe and legal and what the Supreme Court deemed safe and legal. Could someone tell me why admission rights make this procedure more safe? Thank you.

FRC: The law in question [Texas’ H.B. 2] that was struck down would have required abortion facilities to have the same health and safety standards as ambulatory surgical centers (such as trained staff, corridors that could accommodate a stretcher in case of an emergency, up-to-date fire, sanitation, and safety codes) and for abortionists to have admitting privileges at a local hospital not further than thirty miles from the abortion facility. This law would have helped to provide women protection from substandard medical care and in many cases criminal activity of abortion facilities. Over the last six years, “more than 150 abortion providers in at least 30 states and the District of Columbia have faced criminal charges, investigations, administrative complaints, and/or civil lawsuits” related to substandard practices or substandard operation of these abortion facilities. When abortion facilities are not held to the same standards as other facilities, women’s lives are endangered. For example:

  • In 2011 alone, 26,500 women experienced abortion-related complications, and close to 3,200 women required post-abortion hospitalization. 
  • As Federal Judge Edith Jones noted in her opinion for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit on this case: “Planned Parenthood conceded that at least 210 women in Texas annually must be hospitalized after seeking an abortion.”

Further, abortionists with admitting privileges in hospitals could seamlessly assist their patients to a hospital in case of an emergency and no precious time would be lost that could cost the woman her life. Twenty-nine year old Jennifer Morbelli died at the hands of abortionist LeRoy Carhart following complications. After the abortion, Carhart released her to return to her hotel and he left town. Morbelli’s condition deteriorated, but Carhart could not be reached by family members or by hospital emergency room staff.

These are just a few of the reasons why the Supreme Court’s decision is so tragic for women. The pro-life movement is pro-woman and pro-child. We will continue our efforts to protect them both.

We will be releasing more information on this topic in the coming days.

Abortion Distortion” at work in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt

by Travis Weber

June 28, 2016

Once again, we saw the “abortion distortion” at work in our nation’s high court. The majority opinion first distorted the law governing whether a claim should be procedurally barred in order to let these claims against the Texas law proceed, then it distorted its own abortion jurisprudence governing whether there was actually an undue burden here to find one where one doesn’t exist. The majority went out of its way to support a lower court’s basis for striking down the law (and in doing so, tried to give courts authority to interfere where they shouldn’t), when it actually should have simply deferred to the legislature. The majority’s opinion leaves the state of abortion law more muddled than ever. As Justices Thomas and Alito (joined by Chief Justice Roberts) pointed out in dissents, there can be no doubt that our nation’s high court simply does not apply the law fairly and neutrally when it comes to the issue of abortion. This can only serve to discredit it as an institution.

Majority opinion

Justice Breyer wrote the majority, joined by Justices Kagan, Ginsburg, Sotomayor, and Kennedy. In its opinion, the Court bent the typical rules governing claim preclusion to permit the claims against HB 2 to proceed, then even bent its abortion jurisprudence a fair bit to conclude they imposed an undue burden on a woman’s constitutional “right” to obtain an abortion.

Claims not procedurally barred

The first issue was whether any of the plaintiffs’ claims were procedurally barred under res judicata, a doctrine which prohibits raising the same claim if it has already been raised by the party to the case. The Court said they were not. The Court first held that the plaintiff’s admitted privileges claims were not barred because changed circumstances made the claims raised in this case different than those raised in an earlier case challenging the Texas statute (a dubious holding). It also held that the surgical center claims were not barred even though they were not raised in the earlier case because they were based on a different portion of the statute (also dubious).

Undue Burden

The Court began by laying out its standard: “We recognize that the ‘State has a legitimate interest in seeing to it that abortion, like any other medical procedure, is performed under circumstances that insure maximum safety for the patient.’ Roe v. Wade, 410 U. S. 113, 150 (1973). But, we added, ‘a statute which, while furthering [a] valid state interest, has the effect of placing a substantial obstacle in the path of a woman’s choice cannot be considered a permissible means of serving its legitimate ends.’ Casey, 505 U. S., at 877 (plurality opinion). Moreover, ‘[u]nnecessary health regulations that have the purpose or effect of presenting a substantial obstacle to a woman seeking an abortion impose an undue burden on the right.’ Id., at 878.”

The justices held that neither the admitting-privileges nor surgical-center requirement “offers medical benefits sufficient to justify the burdens upon access that each imposes. Each places a substantial obstacle in the path of women seeking a previability abortion, each constitutes an undue burden on abortion access, Casey, supra, at 878 (plurality opinion),” and thus “each violates the Federal Constitution. Amdt. 14, §1.”

The Court of Appeals had held that (1) the courts should not consider and balance medical benefits against the burden when applying the undue burden standard (but rather just look at the burden issue), and (2) a standard of lower constitutional scrutiny should apply to abortion issues. The majority in Hellerstedt reversed the Court of Appeals on both these points.

Undue Burden – Admitting Privileges Requirement

The Court heavily deferred to the determinations of the district court (and affirmed the ability of courts in general to make such determinations) on these issues, and claimed that courts can resolve questions of medical uncertainty—not just legislatures. The Court held that courts can and should balance the medical benefits of a law against its burdens.

The Court found that the evidence in the record indicates that the admitting privileges requirement places a “substantial obstacle in the path of a woman’s choice” (quoting Casey). The Court again deferred to district court findings that facilities were closing at the time the law began to be enforced, which meant women had to travel further to obtain abortions, and there were fewer doctors (doctors were also unable to obtain admitting privileges for reasons unconnected to their ability to perform medical procedures), longer wait times, and more crowded facilities. Taken together, and viewed in light of the absence of a health benefit, this list of effects causes an undue burden.

The Court also noted the statute here does not have legislative findings, which weighs in favor of a court having to scrutinize findings more carefully, and heavily deferred to the district court’s evaluation of the evidence—and concluded it found nothing in the record “that shows that, compared to prior law (which required a “working arrangement” with a doctor with admitting privileges), the new law advanced Texas’ legitimate interest in protecting women’s health.”

The government argued facilities may have closed for reasons unrelated to this law, but the Court found that that the plaintiffs had “satisfied their burden to present evidence of causa­tion by presenting direct testimony as well as plausible inferences to be drawn from the timing of the clinic clo­sures.” When faced with the example of Gosnell, the Court said “there is no reason to believe that an extra layer of regulation would have affected that behavior. Determined wrongdoers, already ignoring existing stat­utes and safety measures, are unlikely to be convinced to adopt safe practices by a new overlay of regulations. Regardless, Gosnell’s deplorable crimes could escape detection only because his facility went uninspected for more than 15 years. Pre-existing Texas law already contained numerous detailed regulations covering abortion facilities, including a requirement that facilities be inspected at least annually.”

Undue Burden – Surgical Center Requirement

Again, the Court deferred to the district court and found that the health and safety concerns are not advanced by the surgical center requirement, especially in light of the existing regulation imposed by Texas. The Court credited evidence and deferred to an expert witness at the district court level, and found that many of the law’s requirements were not necessary to regulate abortion, and had the additional effect of placing a substantial obstacle in the face of a woman’s ability to obtain one by making them travel further and disrupting the medical care they would receive. In making these findings, the Court recognized it assumed that medical facilities operate at or near full capacity, and credited what it viewed as “commonsense inferences” by the district court. The court held that Texas had not shown that remaining facilities could accommodate many more women.

In essence, the Court nitpicked the evidence for ways Texas had not perfectly shown HB 2 would advance women’s health, and even when it had shown health benefits, claimed the burden outweighed these benefits (and the law was thus unconstitutional).

Other arguments

The Court rejected the argument that facial invalidation was precluded by the law’s severability clause. It also rejected Texas’ argument that the law did not impose a substantial obstacle because the number of women affected by the law is not a “large fraction” of Texan women of reproductive age. The Court finally rejected Texas’ argument, based on Simopoulos v. Virginia, that surgical center requirements could be applied to second-trimester abortions. The Court noted this was before Casey, which discarded the trimester framework.

Ginsburg Concurrence

Justice Ginsburg concurred, focusing on the claim that child-birth and other medical procedures are “far more dangerous” than abortion, and yet not subject to the requirements Texas attempts to impose here. “Given those realities, it is beyond rational belief that H. B. 2 could genuinely protect the health of women, and certain that the law ‘would simply make it more difficult for them to obtain abortions.’ Planned Parenthood of Wis., 806 F. 3d, at 910. When a State se­verely limits access to safe and legal procedures, women in desperate circumstances may resort to unlicensed rogue practitioners, faute de mieux, at great risk to their health and safety. See Brief for Ten Pennsylvania Abortion Care Providers as Amici Curiae 17–22. So long as this Court adheres to Roe v. Wade, 410 U. S. 113 (1973), and Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pa. v. Casey, 505 U. S. 833 (1992), Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers laws like H. B. 2 that ‘do little or nothing for health, but rather strew impediments to abortion,’ Planned Parenthood of Wis., 806 F. 3d, at 921, cannot survive judicial inspection.”

Thomas Dissent

Justice Thomas criticized the majority for “perpetuat[ing] the Court’s habit of applying different rules to different constitutional rights—especially the putative right to abortion.”

Quoting Justice Scalia, he said this decision “exemplifies the Court’s troubling tendency ‘to bend the rules when any effort to limit abortion, or even to speak in opposition to abortion, is at issue.’ Stenberg v. Carhart, 530 U. S. 914, 954 (2000) (Scalia, J., dissenting).”

Thomas continues, “[u]ltimately, this case shows why the Court never should have bent the rules for favored rights in the first place. Our law is now so riddled with special exceptions for special rights that our decisions deliver neither predict­ability nor the promise of a judiciary bound by the rule of law.”

He criticizes third-party standing, which permits plaintiffs to sue on behalf of others (and which permitted the claims to be brought in this case in the first place). He observes the Court has made special exceptions for this doctrine in the case of abortion, noting: “There should be no surer sign that our jurisprudence has gone off the rails than this: After creating a constitutional right to abortion because it ‘involve[s] the most intimate and personal choices a person may make in a lifetime, choices central to personal dignity and autonomy,’ Casey, supra, at 851 (majority opinion), the Court has created special rules that cede its enforcement to others.”

Even under Casey, Justice Thomas notes that the majority alters the undue burden test here by (1) telling courts to balance burdens and benefits of the law instead of just assessing the burden, by (2) making their own medical assessments as opposed to deferring to the legislature, which is permitted to enact a law in the face of a debate within the medical community (Stenberg, supra, at 971 (KENNEDY, J., dissent­ing) (“the right of the legislature to resolve matters on which physicians disagreed” is “establish[ed] beyond doubt”), and by (3) scrutinizing laws for more than a reasonable relation to a legitimate state interest even when the law does not impose a substantial obstacle to obtaining an abortion (“Where [the State] has a rational basis to act and it does not impose an undue burden,” this Court previously held, “the State may use its regulatory power” to impose regulations “in furtherance of its legiti­mate interests in regulating the medical profession in order to promote respect for life, including life of the un­born.” Gonzales, supra, at 158 (emphasis added)).”

Justice Thomas criticized the majority for writing an opinion without any clear standard, which will “mystify” lower courts trying to figure the matter out. The Court merely highlights certain parts of the record, and announces that there is an undue burden. In Justice Thomas’s view, this opinion looks like it’s applying the strict scrutiny standard that Casey had rejected.

He proceeds to criticize the Court’s seemingly ad-hoc application of different standards of review, based on the Court’s preference for the issue, which leads to unpredictability among other issues: “Likewise, it is now easier for the government to restrict judicial candidates’ campaign speech than for the Government to define mar­riage—even though the former is subject to strict scrutiny and the latter was supposedly subject to some form of rational-basis review. Compare Williams-Yulee v. Florida Bar, 575 U. S. ___, ___–___ (2015) (slip op., at 8–9), with United States v. Windsor, 570 U. S. ___, ___ (2013) (slipop., at 20)).”

Thus, “[t]he Court should abandon the pretense that anything other than policy preferences underlies its balancing of constitutional rights and inter­ests in any given case.”

Indeed, the Court’s preference for special rights and inconsistent application of its standards to cases based on the rights at issue poses significant problems for the Court as a judicial body—this case being only one example. “The Court has simultaneously transformed judicially created rights like the right to abortion into preferred constitu­tional rights, while disfavoring many of the rights actually enumerated in the Constitution … Unless the Court abides by one set of rules to adjudicate constitu­tional rights, it will continue reducing constitutional law to policy-driven value judgments until the last shreds of its legitimacy disappear.”

He concludes: “Today’s decision will prompt some to claim victory, just as it will stiffen opponents’ will to object. But the entire Nation has lost something essential. The majority’s em­brace of a jurisprudence of rights-specific exceptions and balancing tests is ‘a regrettable concession of defeat—an acknowledgement that we have passed the point where ‘law,’ properly speaking, has any further application.’ Scalia, The Rule of Law as a Law of Rules, 56 U. Chi. L. Rev. 1175, 1182 (1989). I respectfully dissent.”

Alito Dissent

Justice Alito also dissented, with Chief Justice Roberts, and Justice Thomas joining.

Claim is procedurally barred

Justice Alito first criticized the majority for bending the rules of res judicata to accommodate the claim at issue because it concerned abortion. “When we decide cases on particularly controversial issues, we should take special care to apply settled procedural rules in a neutral manner. The Court has not done that here.”

In essence, the majority’s basis for permitting the claims to proceed here is weak, has holes, and has insufficient supporting authority. “The Court awards a victory to petitioners on the very claim that they unsuccessfully pressed in the earlier case. The Court does this even though petitioners, undoubtedly realizing that a rematch would not be allowed, did not presume to include such a claim in their complaint. The Court favors petitioners with a victory that they did not have the audacity to seek.”

Justice Alito observed the majority failed to even address the many elements of res judicata, and in ruling that the claims here were not the same, even erred when it addressed that element!

In essence, the claims are bound together by the law’s impact on the present or future closure of facilities. The claim in this case therefore is the same, had already been raised by the plaintiffs, and therefore should be barred. It doesn’t matter that the plaintiffs have new and better evidence; this doesn’t get around the issue that the claims are the same. The new and old claims are based on the same acts and set of circumstances, and new evidence does not transform them into different claims. The authority cited by the majority—the Comment F to Section 24 of the Second Restatement of Judgments—says a claim may be a different claim, not that it always is. This leeway should be applied sparingly, in Justice Alito’s view, and the majority does not have the authority to conclude as it does. There are no new “acts” here by Texas which even could make these claims different, but only new consequences, if at all. The plaintiffs here knew what the effects of the law would be, and thus have no basis to assert their claims are now different.

The plaintiffs could have provided evidence in their first case to show that facilities would close, yet now “the Court attempts to argue that petitioners could not have shown at that time that a sufficient number of clinics had already closed. As I have explained, that is not what petitioners need to show or what they attempted to prove.”

Even if the Court thinks that petitioners’ evidence in the first case was insufficient, the Court does not claim that petitioners, with reasonable effort, could not have gathered sufficient evidence to show with some degree of accuracy what the effects of the admitting privileges requirement would be. As I have just explained, in their first trial petitioners introduced a survey of 27 abortion clinics indicating that 15 would close because of the admitting privileges requirement. The Court does not identify what additional evidence petitioners needed but were unable to gather. There is simply no reason why petitioners should be allowed to re-litigate their facial claim.”

In sum, the Court’s holding that petitioners’ second facial challenge to the admitting privileges requirement is not barred by claim preclusion is not supported by any of our cases or any body of lower court precedent; is contrary to the bedrock rule that a party cannot re-litigate a claim simply because the party has obtained new and better evidence; is contrary to the first Restatement of Judgments and the actual rules of the second Restatement of Judgment; and is purportedly based largely on a single comment in the second Restatement, but does not even represent a sensible reading of that comment. In a regular case, an attempt by petitioners to re-litigate their previously unsuccessful facial challenge to the admitting privileges requirement would have been rejected out of hand—indeed, might have resulted in the imposition of sanctions under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 11. No court would even think of reviving such a claim on its own. But in this abortion case, ordinary rules of law—and fairness—are suspended.”

The majority erroneously holds that these claims are separate based on weak and inapplicable authority. In reality, these claims are based on the same bill, both impose now requirements on facilities, both seek to protect women, both challenged as imposing the same kind of burden, and are treated by the plaintiffs as a package in terms of their claim that they are trying to “shut down” abortion facilities. There is no doubt they are part of the same litigation.

No Undue Burden

Even if the claims are not barred, there is no undue burden here.

Since plaintiffs assert rights on behalf of their patients, they must show an impact on a “large fraction” of impacted women to obtain facial relief. They fail to do that. They only show that certain facilities closed, but make “little effort” to show why they did.

Justice Alito noted that this law may impact facilities, which is understandable, and even desired in the aftermath of situations like the Gosnell matter. Indeed, “the Philadelphia grand jury that investigated the case recommended that the Commonwealth adopt a law requiring abortion facilities to comply with the same regulations as ASCs.”

However, facilities may have closed because of (1) H. B. 2’s restriction on medication abortion, (2) the withdrawal of Texas family planning funds, (3) the nationwide decline in abortion demand, and (4) physician retirement (or other localized factors).

The plaintiffs could have made precise findings regarding each facility in Texas, and had the burden of proof to do so, but didn’t.

In addition, the plaintiffs simply didn’t put on any evidence of actual facility capacity as it concerned facility access. The majority let them off the hook on this point, even though this was important to determine an undue burden.

Finally, the majority failed to recognize that under Casey, traveling 150 miles is not an undue burden, and a significant majority of Texas women didn’t have to travel that far.

Justice Alito also wrote that even if the claims were not precluded, in applying the severability clause here, the law’s requirements must be held in every city in which it does not impose an undue burden.

Sadly, the Court has to again apply the “abortion distortion” to argue that the severability clause does not apply here, and invalidate the entire statute. Indeed, many non-abortion related provisions of the law are now struck down too.

He concludes: “When we decide cases on particularly controversial issues, we should take special care to apply settled procedural rules in a neutral manner. The Court has not done that here.” The Court’s “patent refusal to apply well-established law in a neutral way is indefensible and will undermine public confidence in the Court as a fair and neutral arbiter.”