Operation Rescue staff

Research attorney suspended for nasty tweets about Phill Kline: Report

Operation Rescue staff
By Operation Rescue staff
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TOPEKA, November 16, 2012, (Operation Rescue) - The Associated Press is now reporting that the research attorney who tweeted nasty and disparaging comments about Phill Kline - Sarah Peterson Herr - was suspended Friday morning,  pending an investigation.

The decision came just hours after Operation Rescue broke the story, which was posted on LifeSiteNews.com.

Phill Kline stood before a seven-member panel at the Kansas Supreme Court yesterday. Together with his attorney Tom Condit, he made a final defense against a politically motivated ethics case against him that has spanned six years.

The Supreme Court consisted of only two sitting members of the Court, Justices Dan Biles and Nancy Moritz. The other five members recused themselves and were replaced by two Appellate Court Judges—Karen Arnold-Burger, and Henry W. Green Jr.—and three District Court Judges, Edward E. Bouker, Bruce T. Gatterman, and Michael J. Malone.

Disciplinary Administrator Stan Hazlett began the 90-minute proceeding by attempting to mitigate allegations that he was biased against Kline. He then went on to make arguments that contradicted that claim.

Hazlett disregarded the recommendation of indefinite license suspension made earlier by a disciplinary panel that had heard the longest ethics case in the history of Kansas. Instead, Hazlett recommended permanent license revocation, the harshest action possible.

Hazlett claimed that he would prosecute any attorney who lied professionally or in his private life, and made of point of asserting that investigators that withhold the identities of the target of a criminal investigation from third party witnesses is unethical. The most vocal of the Judges, Biles and Moritz, appeared not to buy that argument based on their aggressive questioning on that point.

Hazlett also accused Kline of “heightening the condemnation of [abortionist George] Tiller” by appearing on the Fox News program The O’Reilly Factor in an attempt to taint the “potential” jury pool for a case that was not filed for another 46 days. Kline’s defense contends that he made no inappropriate comments and was wrongfully charged under an ethics rule that was not in effect at the time of the conduct.

Also at issue was an Excel file on a CD that mysteriously appeared on the courtroom desk of Tiller attorney Dan Monet during one of Tiller’s criminal hearings in Wichita.

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The file was generated by a low-level employee of the Attorney General’s office and listed the names of late-term abortion patients of Tiller’s who had stayed at the La Quinta Inn during their multi-day abortions. Kline had sought records from the La Quinta Inn in order to identify minor girls who had abortions so he could determine if they were safe and whether suspected child abuse had been reported.

Kline has always maintained that he never sought the identities of adult abortion patients of Tiller’s or any other abortion clinic.

Kline insists he never ordered the spreadsheet to be made and had no knowledge of it at all until he learned of it through news reports. Nevertheless, Kline was accused of plotting to use the names of adult patients for nefarious reasons.

When an attorney for the Disciplinary Administrator’s office was questioned how he knew Kline had prior knowledge of the contents of the disc and of his alleged intentions, the attorney responded that it was all implied by the fact that a copy was found among files after Kline vacated the District Attorney’s office. That argument did not appear to impress the panel of judges.

The most contentious exchange came regarding Kline’s attempt to enforce a Grand Jury subpoena for records from Planned Parenthood. The Grand Jury had requested to review any filings made on behalf of the Grand Jury. Hazlett accused Kline of improperly disregarding the Grand Jury’s instructions. However Kline noted that the Grand Jury had asked to review, not approve all filings done in their behalf. Kline further argued that in any case, the motion he made was not filed in behalf of the Grand Jury. Instead, he filed the motion in his independent capacity as District Attorney, which he had full authority to do.

Condit told the Court that the case against Kline was one based on cherry-picking over 30,000 pages of documents and making inferences about statements in an attempt to attack Kline’s honesty.

“No one could withstand the withering attack over five years,” said Condit. “Every attorney should be frightened of this Disciplinary Attorney’s office.”

After the hearing, Condit was asked by reporters if Kline’s ethics case was all about abortion. He responded, “Let me tell you something, folks. It’s always about abortion. It’s always about abortion.”

Display Boards used in Kline’s defense highlighted errors in the ten findings made against him. Each of the ten findings had at least one error, and some as many as four. Errors in the ethics case against Kline include:

- Applying non-existent rules in three cases
- Allegations that contradict previous Supreme Court findings in one case
- Improper use of Rule 8.4 in five cases
- Failing to find “materiality” four cases
- Failing to find that Kline had “knowledge” in four cases
- Allegations contradict Judges Anderson, Owens, King, or the DeFries report in five cases
- Misstates the record in six cases.

Concerns about the biased culture that exists at the Kansas Supreme Court building surfaced after crude and prejudicial postings to Twitter were made during Kline’s hearing by a research attorney for an Appellate Court judge. The tweets, made by Sarah Patterson Herr, were mocking of Kline and sometimes crude, but more seriously appeared to show she had some prior knowledge of how the justices would rule.

“There can be no doubt that this case is a politically motivated one meant to destroy the prosecutor who had the nerve to criminally charge abortion clinics that were breaking the law,” said Troy Newman, President of Operation Rescue and Pro-Life Nation, who attended the hearings. “They wanted to make an example out of him so no other prosecutor would dare to take on the abortion cartel. If they are successful at revoking Kline’s law license, they will only succeed at putting women at further risk of harm from abortionists who will believe more than ever that they are above the law.”

The Court gave no indication on when it might rule. Possible outcomes range from complete exoneration to permanent revocation of Kline’s Kansas law license.

Source documents and more information msy be found at KlineCaseFile.com.

Reprinted from Operation Rescue.

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Brian Fisher

Birth mothers: real heroes of the pro-life movement

Brian Fisher
By Brian Fisher
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What does it mean to be brave? Is it the doctor who dedicates himself to improving the health of a third-world nation? Is it the woman who faces her third round of chemotherapy to fight the progression of cancer? Is it the teacher who forgoes the comforts of a suburban school to reach minorities in the inner city? All of these are examples of bravery demonstrated in exceedingly challenging circumstances. And our society longs for stories of bravery to inspire us and fill us with hope.

As someone who works day in and day out with those on the front lines of helping rescue babies from abortion, I’m no stranger to stories of bravery. I see courage every day in the eyes of the men and women who sacrifice their time and energy to help women facing unplanned pregnancies. I see it every time a young mom — despite being pressured by her parents or significant other to get an abortion — chooses LIFE. And perhaps more profoundly than in any other situation, I see it when an expectant mom with no relational support, job, or income chooses to place her baby for adoption rather than abort her son or daughter.

This was Nicky’s situation.

When Nicky found herself pregnant with her boyfriend’s child, her life was already in shambles. During her 26 years, Nicky had already given birth to and surrendered sole custody of a little girl, committed several felonies, lived in her car, lost several jobs, and barely subsisted on minimum wage. So when she met up with an old boyfriend, Brandon, Nicky believed she was being given a second chance at happiness. “Our first year together was beautiful. We were getting to know each other and deciding if we would stay together forever.” Unfortunately, a positive pregnancy test result changed everything.

“When I told him I was pregnant, Brandon sat down on the bed, looked me in the eyes, and told me to ‘get an abortion’.” Nicky says those three little words changed everything for her. “I became depressed living with someone who wanted his child ‘dealt with.’”  Like thousands of women every day, Nicky began searching online for information on abortion, hoping her boyfriend would eventually change his mind. Through our strategic marketing methods, Online for Life was able to guide Nicky to a life-affirming pregnancy center where she received grace-filled counsel. “The woman I sat with was beyond wonderful. She helped me to just breathe and ask God what to do….And so I did.”

Nicky left the pregnancy center that day with a new resolve to choose life for her child, even though she still wasn’t sure how she’d financially support a child. “I was alone with just $10 in my pocket…and without any type of plan for what I was going to do.” So Nicky relied on the support of the staff she met at the life-affirming pregnancy center. With their help and through a chain of fortunate events, Nicky was put in contact with the couple who would eventually become her daughter’s adoptive parents.

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After meeting this couple face to face and coming to terms with her own desperate situation, Nicky conceded that the best thing for her unborn child would be to place her in someone else’s loving home. She told Brandon about her plans and he agreed that adoption would give their child the best chance at a happy and secure future. He even returned home to help Nicky prepare for the birth of their child. “The weeks leading up to my delivery were filled with a mixture of laughter, tears, protectiveness and sadness,” Nicky recalls. But one sentiment continued to be shared with her. “Brave…so brave.” That’s what everyone from the life-affirming pregnancy center to the adoption agency to the birthing center kept calling Nicky. “The nurses kept coming up to me and telling me they were honored to care for and treat someone like me.” After several weeks of preparation, Nicky finally gave birth to a healthy baby girl, and she made the dreams of a couple from the other side of the country come true.

Nicky’s adoption story continues to be riddled with a strange combination of pain and joy. “I cry every day, but I know my baby, who came out of a very bad time, ended up being loved by people from across the country.” When asked what message she’d like to share with the world about her decision to give up her child for adoption, Nicky responds, The voice of the mother who gives up a baby for adoption isn’t heard. We need to change that.”

To learn more about Online for Life and how we’re helping to make stories like Nicky and her daughter’s story a possibility, please visit OnlineforLife.org.

Author, speaker, and business leader Brian Fisher is the President and Co-Founder of Online for Life, a transparent, metric-oriented, compassion-driven nonprofit organization dedicated to helping rescue babies and their families from abortion through technology and grace.

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Dustin Siggins Dustin Siggins Follow Dustin

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New York farmers stop hosting weddings after $13,000 fine for declining lesbian ceremony

Dustin Siggins Dustin Siggins Follow Dustin
By Dustin Siggins

New York farmers Robert and Cynthia Gifford, who were ordered last week to pay $13,000 for not hosting a same-sex "wedding," say they are closing that part of their operation.

"Going forward, the Giffords have decided to no longer host any wedding ceremonies on their farm, other than the ones already under contract," said Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) lawyer James Trainor. ADF represented the Giffords in their legal fight against New York's non-discrimination law.

Last week, the Giffords were ordered to pay a $10,000 fine to the state of New York and $3,000 in damages to a lesbian couple, Jennifer McCarthy and Melisa Erwin, who approached them in 2012 about hosting their "wedding." The Giffords, who are Roman Catholic, said their religious convictions would not let them host the ceremony, but that McCarthy and Erwin could hold their reception on their property.

Unbeknownst to the Giffords, lesbian couple recorded the two-to-three minute conversation. After declining to hold the reception on the Giffords' farm, on which they live and rent property, the lesbian couple decided to make a formal complaint to the state's Division of Human Rights.

Eventually, Judge Migdalia Pares ruled that the Giffords' farm, Liberty Ridge Farm, constitutes a public accommodation because space is rented on the grounds and fees are collected from the public. The Giffords argued that because they live on the property with their children, they should be exempt from the state law, but Pares said that this does not mean their business is private.

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Trainor told TheBlaze that the Giffords' decision to end wedding ceremonies at Liberty Ridge “will hurt their business in the short run," but that was preferable to violating their religious beliefs.

“The Giffords serve all people with respect and care. They have hired homosexual employees and have hosted events for same-sex couples,” he said.

However, "since the state of New York has essentially compelled them to do all ceremonies or none at all, they have chosen the latter in order to stay true to their religious convictions," Trainor explained to LifeSiteNews. "No American should be forced by the government to choose between their livelihood and their faith, but that’s exactly the choice the state of New York has forced upon the Giffords."

"They will continue to host wedding receptions," said Trainor.

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Thaddeus Baklinski Thaddeus Baklinski Follow Thaddeus

South African mom files ‘wrongful life’ lawsuit on behalf of Downs son

Thaddeus Baklinski Thaddeus Baklinski Follow Thaddeus
By Thaddeus Baklinski

A South African woman has launched a "wrongful life" lawsuit against the Cape Town-based Foetal Assessment Centre, claiming a failure to inform her that the child she was carrying was at risk of having Down Syndrome prevented her from aborting her baby.

A twist in this lawsuit is that, unlike other "wrongful birth" lawsuits, the mother in this case missed the time limit to file the claim on her own behalf, so she is asking the South African Constitutional Court to allow her to sue the center for “wrongful life” on behalf of her now-born son.

“You have a duty to tell my mother carrying me that I'm malformed so that she can make an informed decision as to whether or not to carry me to term,” the statement of claim against the Foetal Assessment Centre reads, according to SABC News.

“It is not as if the foetus is sort of putting up its hand and saying why you didn’t destroy me," the mother's lawyer, Paul Hoffman, explained to Deputy Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke. "The foetus is complaining that its malformation, its development is the result of the bad advice that was given.”

The SABC report did not say what compensation the woman is seeking.

The scope of the case is similar to that of a New Zealand couple who won a lawsuit claiming monetary compensation after a routine 20 week ultrasound scan failed to discover that their daughter had spina bifida.

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The mother, whose name has not been released, claimed that the continuance of the pregnancy was a “personal injury,” and, had she been given the correct diagnosis after that scan, she would have aborted her daughter.

"We consider that the continued pregnancy of the appellant following a misdiagnosis in the 20 week scan is capable of being an injury suffered by the appellant,” the court ruled, and directed the New Zealand Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) to make the woman eligible for compensation for the ongoing surgical and physiotherapy expenses incurred by their child.

New Zealand disability advocate Mike Sullivan said the underpinning attitude behind the decision is that those with disability, both born and unborn, are seen as a burden on society.

“This is what happens,” Sullivan said, when “the children become reduced to nothing – wrong even to exist.”

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