Judge Rules Women Have Right to Choose Life(!)

judge 2That’s only one headline among several that should be making the news in recent days.

But since they’re not, let’s go through a few. Starting with that judge who ruled that an Illinois city ordinance violates a woman’s right to choose. Seriously. Some headlines on this story called it a ‘victory for anti-abortion groups’ or something close. That rhetoric is getting tired but at least it’s transparent. Call things what they are, like choice.

In an opinion which called Elgin’s “effort to curtail private entities from providing free and valuable services to its young women …ill-advised,” United States District Court Judge Samuel Der-Yeghiayan permanently enjoined Elgin’s code restrictions which had been used to halt The Life Center’s mobile pregnancy services…

The opinion went on: “[I]t must be recognized that the City is preventing Life Center from being able to effectively provide pregnant women in the City with needed medical care that could identify issues and save lives of unborn children. Life Center has in fact provided evidence that it has helped a multitude of young women who have used the services at the Mobile Facility.”

Furthermore, it should be noted, US District Court Judge Der-Yeghiayan said in his decision (on page 14 of the decision, in the final paragraph under Section III of Discussion):

The City’s Code is unduly burdensome to the right of a woman to choose life.

And there you are. With an economy of words, the simple truth of the so-called ‘choice’ movement.

Then there was the permanent injunction against an Alabama abortion clinic, which these days is emblematic of legislation and court cases across the country involving the regulation of abortion clinics with the same standards applied to any other medical clinic. It’s about time.

Jefferson County Alabama Circuit Court Judge Joseph Boohaker ruled today that the abortion business operating out of the New Women All Women building in Birmingham was subject to regulation by the Alabama Department of Public Health. He further ruled that since abortionist Dr. Bruce Norman has not obtained proper licensure from the Department of Public Health, the business should be permanently enjoined.

This news comes on the heels of the discovery of an apparent botched abortion at Mississippi’s only abortion clinic, a facility which is also owned by Diane Derzis, and out of which abortionist Norman operates as well. Local pro-life activists took to the streets in Montgomery to bring public attention to the hazard Derzis is creating for women.

Allison Aranda, Life Legal Defense Foundation’s Senior Staff Counsel, commented on the court’s ruling:

“We are elated that Judge Boohaker saw Bruce Norman’s activities for what they really were—operating an unlicensed abortion clinic. The court has essentially ordered Norman to cease operating an abortion clinic without having a license, which seems like common sense—that’s what the law requires. But now, if Norman continues to defy the ADPH regulations and Judge Boohaker’s ruling, ADPH can seek further sanctions against Norman for not merely violating the law but for violating a court order as well.”

So here we have two questions I’ve been asking for years, addressed. One, if the whole abortion on demand movement is about ‘choice’, why does that movement so vigorously fight any effort to pass informed consent laws, common sense legislation that safeguards a woman’s right to a fully informed decision? And two, if all other medical clinics should and must abide by common sense regulations that oversee the premises and procedures and instruments directly affecting patients for the good of their health, why should and do abortion clinics get exempted from application of those regulations?

After the Kermit Gosnell trial, things changed, and abortion is under far more scrutiny. As it should have been for the past 40 years, for crying out loud.

The other headline people likely didn’t hear is that the GAO is investigating Planned Parenthood for abuses of taxpayer funds. Initial audits by separate states have already shown that tab runs in the tens of millions of dollars.

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) confirmed last week it will be conducting a comprehensive investigation into the use of federal taxpayer funds that Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers have received. This news comes on the heels of an agreement by Texas-based affiliate Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast to repay $4.3 million to U.S. and Texas taxpayers to settle the fraud claims brought forward by a former Planned Parenthood employee and whistleblower.

“The fact that Planned Parenthood received over half a billion dollars in taxpayer money last year is beyond comprehension, especially as there is little federal oversight of the exact use of these funds. They should be held accountable for every dollar they receive, like every other federal contractor and grantee,” said Susan B. Anthony List president Marjorie Dannenfelser. “As despicable clinical care conditions, including at Planned Parenthood facilities, continue to be exposed in the post-Gosnell world, it is even more important to track the funding going to America’s largest abortion provider.

“We applaud the GAO for conducting this investigation. After 40 years of lavish federal funding from dozens of programs, a comprehensive audit is long overdue.”

And here’s more proof.

But while you are likely to hear very little about this in the media, this is not the first time that state or federal governments have determined that Planned Parenthood affiliates have engaged in waste, abuse and potential fraud with taxpayer dollars. In just a handful of publicly disclosed and very limited audits of Planned Parenthood affiliates, federal and state government auditors in New York, New Jersey, Illinois, Washington, California, and a previous audit in Texas have documented approximately $8.3 million in waste, abuse and possible fraud by America’s leading abortionist.

The grand total: Federal and state auditors and investigators have specifically tabbed Planned Parenthood affiliates with at least $12.5 million in waste, abuse, and “fraudulent overbilling” of taxpayers. (View the Alliance Defending Freedom full report on the state audits here.) Former Planned Parenthood employees and others allege many millions more.

So. Where have the media been on this story? Mostly missing, complicit, looking the other way. Shame on them. But never mind them.

Now you know.


image credit: shutterstock


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Sheila Gribben Liaugminas, of Chicago, is a member of the Voices editorial board, and was host of The Right Questions on Relevant Radio and Issues and Answers news show. She and her husband have two sons, one a seminarian and the other a college student. Follow updates on this story (and contact Sheila) at www.inforumblog.com.

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