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WASHINGTON, D.C. (LifeSiteNews) – There’s a ray of hope for the defendants in the second D.C. FACE Act Trial,

During Wednesday’s jury selection, a security guard employed by Students for Life of America (SFLA) was retained among the pool of potential jurors, while several strong supporters of abortion openly admitted they would not be able to make a fair and impartial judgement, thereby disqualifying themselves from judging the pro-life rescuers in the case.  

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While the security guard known to SFLA did not state his views on abortion, the defendants hope that, having many times heard pro-life arguments and protected members of a pro-life organization, the security guard understands the reasonableness of peaceful protests and rescues. The guard had previously served in the D.C. Metropolitan Police Department and had once been called on site when pro-life protesters were outside a now-defunct abortion facility in the city. However, he did not arrest any pro-lifers at the time.  

SFLA primarily works to spread the pro-life message on college campuses and universities. As a response to the increase of violence against pro-life activists and pregnancy centers, SFLA now employs private security guards when engaging with students and pro-abortion advocates.  

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Giving candid answers, many abortion advocates admitted Wednesday to the judge that their strong support for the practice would prevent them from setting aside their personal views to render an impartial judgment based only on the evidence and arguments of the case. 

After defendant Joan Bell, who is representing herself in court, thanked a potential pro-abortion juror for their honesty, she was chastised by the pro-abortion Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, who seemed annoyed at losing this juror. 

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The prosecution made special efforts to retain pro-abortion jurors even after hearing them admit to being unable to render impartial judgment. “No one can be absolutely certain of fair judgment,” said prosecuting attorney Sanjay Patel in one attempt to dismiss the juror’s admission. However, the judge was forced to acknowledge that the person had said they could not decide the case fairly, and so the person were dismissed. 

However, such honesty was not to be found in every person who expressed strong support for abortion, and the pool of potential jurors still includes activists who “regularly,” even “monthly,” donate to abortion giant Planned Parenthood. Echoing pro-abortion jurors chosen for the first trial, these abortion supporters announced both their pro-abortion activism and their certainty that it would not affect or color their consideration of the evidence and the impartiality of their judgment over the defendants. This strains credulity, for pro-lifers so opposed to abortion that they are willing to risk arrest to stop babies from dying are surely these abortion activists’ greatest enemies politically. 

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As in the jury selection for the first trial, neither regular donations to Planned Parenthood nor participation in abortion rallies stand as sufficient cause to strike a person from the jury list, according to Judge Kotelly, so long as potential jurors simply say their strong views in favor of abortion would not affect their ability to be impartial. 

The judge even kept a person who fundraises for a client who promotes abortion both in the U.S. and abroad. This potential juror donates monthly to Planned Parenthood and lapsed from Catholicism in part because of the doctrine against abortion. She stated the Church’s teachings on the sanctity of human life were one of the things that left her “dissatisfied” with Catholicism.  

Another person kept in the jury pool was an attorney who served as counsel for the House Judiciary Committee for about 12 years, working closely on efforts to expand and pass the infamous abortion amendment called the Equal Rights Amendment. This person also admitted to contributing financially to Emily’s List, a pro-abortion Democrat women’s campaign. 

In defense of the retaining of strong abortion advocates, activists, and donors, Judge Kollar-Kotelly repeated the Democrat mantra that “abortion is reproductive health care.” She also chastised the defense for objecting to such jurors, saying, “Do not inject into this case that they’re deciding about abortion.” Kollar-Kotelly repeated “This case is not about abortion” as she had throughout the first FACE DC trial.  

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Nevertheless, several months ago when the defense objected that after the Dobbs decision – which stated categorically that “the Constitution does not  confer a right to abortion” – a federal court no longer carries jurisdiction in cases related to abortion and the FACE act, this very judge, in this very case, ordered both parties to examine and submit their opinion on whether abortion was protected by the 13th Amendment of the Constitution.   

The 13th amendment abolished slavery in this country. It has nothing to do with abortion, and when it was ratified, most of the states of the Union had universal, or near universal, bans on abortion. Every other state soon after did, too. 

So desperate was the judge’s attempt to maintain jurisdiction over the case that even the prosecution declined to argue that the 13th Amendment assured a constitutional right to abortion. And so, having failed in the argument that the prohibition of slavery assured the right to kill an unborn baby, and having secured alleged jurisdiction over the case through a different argument, that it falls under the Commerce Act, the judge has now ruled that the case has so little to do with abortion that the matter may not be brought up by the defense.   

As was the case in the first D.C. FACE Act trial in August, the defense has been instructed not to say the words “infanticide,” “abortionist,” and “innocent lives” as they have been deemed “inflammatory language.” Neither are they allowed to make First Amendment arguments, nor defense of a person arguments. As with the first trial, for the purposes of the case, the judge has ruled that “the unborn are non-persons.” 

The defense has filed a motion for the entire second trial to be moved to another jurisdiction because of the pro-abortion prejudice on the part the jurors selected in the first trial, which is likely to be seen again in the jury selected for this second trial. The motion will be considered by Judge Kotelly after jury selection has been made. Moving the trial outside of the predominantly pro-abortion residents of the District of Columbia will certainly increase the prospects of a more impartial jury. In the meantime, the contours of the jury continue to take shape as potential jurors make known their views on abortion. 

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