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Abortion Industry Eyes Kansas
© Jack Cashill
July 25, 2008
Kansas is one of only six states that allows its citizens to petition to form grand juries. The seeming complicity of Attorney General Paul Morrison and other abortion industry beneficiaries with the clinics suggests why this law can be useful.
In both Wichita and Johnson County, citizen groups took advantage of the law to petition for grand juries to investigate Tiller and Planned Parenthood respectively.
In both venues, the abortion industry and its allies did everything within their power to derail the grand juries and block District Attorney Phill Kline’s investigation as well. The media cheered the industry on.
In February 2008, The Kansas Supreme Court gladdened the hearts of the abortion industry and the local media when it agreed to consider Dr. George Tiller’s request to quash the grand jury subpoenas. This, of course, delayed the Wichita grand jury in its attempt to review the redacted records.
In May 2008, however, the Kansas Supreme Court ruled that the grand jury process was constitutional and finally granted the Sedgwick County grand jury access to abortion records in its investigation of Tiller.
The court did, however, rule that abortion records must be treated with much more caution than other medical records routinely subpoenaed in court actions. By stalling on the decision, the high court had also wasted months of the grand jury’s allotted time.
More problematically, the court refused to allow Judge Anderson to testify in the Planned Parenthood case, a ruling that is being challenged by Kline as this article goes to press.
The Kansas Supreme Court is among the very few state courts whose members are appointed by the governor without any confirmation process. For the last fourteen years at least, governors politically and philosophically opposed to Kline have made those appointments.
Among many other outside observers, Judge Andrew J. Napolitano, Fox News Senior Judicial Analyst, has criticized the high court for its apparent intervention on the behalf of the abortion industry.
Delayed and misled, the Sedgwick County grand jury eventually reported that it had “not found sufficient evidence to bring an indictment [against Tiller] on any crime related to the abortion laws.”
The grand jury’s reasoning was instructive. Its final statement noted that the Kansas legislature had made an “earnest attempt” to limit late-term abortions to “the gravest of circumstances.”
The statement continued that the jury’s review of medical records “revealed a number of questionable late-term abortions with regard to the diagnosis of ‘substantial and irreversible impairment.’”
Had the grand jury had the freedom and the time to look, it would have discovered that very nearly all of the 3,000 late-term abortions performed on viable babies since the law was enacted in 1998 were equally questionable.
That these abortions actually increased after a tough new law was passed should have rung alarm bells all over the state, let alone in the grand jury room.
This grand jury, however, never really had a chance to bring Tiller to justice. A Sedgwick County judge had earlier denied a petition to appoint a special prosecutor to guide the grand jury and left its fate instead in the hands of District Attorney Nina Foulston.
The reader may remember Foulston as the Democratic DA and Tiller ally who had found a friendly judge to dismiss on jurisdictional grounds the original charges Kline had pressed against Tiller.
Foulston convinced the grand jury that disgraced Attorney General Morrison’s preposterous interpretation of the abortion law was actually the law of the land. In other words, if two doctors said a women faced irreversible damage, it did not matter whether or not they had told the truth.
With the grand juried derailed in Johnson County and Wichita, with Planned Parenthood successfully stalling its criminal case until after his term expired in January, Kline knew if he did not contain the state’s lawless abortion industry, no one would.
The decision was not an easy one. The media have so grossly caricatured Kline that it is hard for him and his family to go out in public.
Much will hinge on Kline’s bid to be elected. He faces a strong primary opponent, backed by the moderate Republican establishment.
If he prevails in the August primary, he faces a well-funded Democrat in the general, not to mention the nearly violent opposition of the Kansas City Star.
Kline will be a serious underdog in November, and there is no guarantee he will win in August. If he loses either, his political career is over.
The abortion industry cannot afford Kline’s election. It will do everything in its power to stop him. The industry’s choice, Republican turned Democrat Rick Guinn, has made his allegiances clear.
“No matter who my opponent is this fall, my top priority will be to refocus this office on law enforcement issues and not political issues.”
In Kansas this is code for “the abortion industry once again gets a pass.” Now, only Kline’s election as District Attorney can prevent that “pass” from becoming permanent--and not just in Kansas.
As was true 150 years ago, what happens in Kansas today, will shape the destiny of America tomorrow.
Previous Columns in this series:
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