Phill Kline ethics trial adjourns for now: battle has cost him $200,000 says Kline
TOPEKA, Kansas, March 2, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The eight-day ethics trial against Phill Kline, the former Kansas attorney general and the only U.S. prosecutor to file criminal charges against Planned Parenthood, came to a conclusion this afternoon – but not before testimony detailed how the judicial system had been reworked against Kline in favor of the abortion clinics that he had targeted as part of a broad criminal investigation.
However, Wednesday only marked the end of part one of the Kline ethics trial. Pro-life blogger Jill Stanek, reporting to LifeSiteNews.com from Topeka, said the second part will begin in several months. She said that while the case for Count I against Kline is over, the hearing for Count II will begin on July 19. Disciplinary Administrator Stan Hazlett will argue that Kline acted prejudiced in the administration of justice (Count II).
Each side will have a day and a half to argue their case, with closing arguments on the fourth day.
Motion to dismiss ethics charges
Stanek said that Kline’s attorneys filed a 148-page motion to dismiss the charges against him Tuesday afternoon. Hazlett will have until April 4 to respond to that motion. Kline’s attorneys will then have until April 18 to reply to Hazlett’s response.
The disciplinary panel will then make a judgment whether to dismiss the charges or continue proceeding with the trial.
Expert witness affirms Kline’s investigative tactics, delay of abortion file transfer
Although Kline was given less than a day to make a positive defense against Hazlett’s Count I charges of ethical misconduct, Stanek said he had enough time to call to the stand an expert witness who affirmed that the tactics Kline used throughout the investigation of Planned Parenthood and George Tiller were sound and routine in law enforcement investigations.
Tom Stanton, an investigator and ethics professor at Kansas University, testified that all of Phill Kline and his AG office’s actions in obtaining information from Social and Rehabilitative Services were ethical. He emphasized that Kline’s omitting to tell state agencies the full scope of his investigation was not a lie. But even so, Stanton added that it is entirely ethical for investigators to deceive, because the goal is not to let the target know what is going on.
“Police can actually lie to suspects, and not share the nature of the investigation with anyone,” Stanton said, as reported by Stanek.
Kline also faces charges of ethics violations in part because files relating to his criminal investigation of the abortion clinics were stored at an apartment for a month, until February 2007. However, Stanton testified on the stand that he agreed with the assessment of Tom Williams, Kline’s chief investigator, that the Johnson County District Attorney’s office was not secured. Williams had later moved the files after he deemed the office secure enough to safely store the files in the evidence room.
Stanton said conversations with Linda Carter, AG Paul Morrison’s former secretary and paramour at the DA’s office, confirmed the view that the office was not secure when Kline transitioned into Morrison’s former job. He said Morrison had so poisoned the Johnson County DA’s office that attorneys were branded as “traitors” simply for working with Kline.
Illustrating the one-sidedness of the hostility, however, Stanton recounted that Kline had made overtures of good will to Morrison, and sent him a letter giving him information Morrison had requested and offering to help. Stanton said Morrison’s response to Kline’s letter was “thanks, but no thanks.”
Supreme Court order may have put key information in abortion clinics’ hands
On the final day of the proceedings Kline also testified that the Kansas Supreme Court had compelled him to hand everything and anything his criminal investigation gathered on abortion clinics to his successor as attorney general, Paul Morrison.
But according to Kline the information then may have then been handed over to Planned Parenthood and abortionist George Tiller. “I’ve been told all that information was then turned over to attorneys for abortion clinics,” Kline testified.
He also testified that the Kansas Supreme Court order did not stop at the targets of Kline’s investigation, i.e. Comprehensive Health Planned Parenthood (CHPP) in Johnson County and Tiller’s Women’s Health Care Services clinic in Wichita.
Stanek told LifeSiteNews.com that the high court’s order was so broad in scope, Kline had to hand over to Morrison prosecutors’ evidence given him that pertained to other abortion clinics under investigation. This included personal information, civil cases by child rape victims against Planned Parenthood in Ohio (for their failure to report child rape), and even information from Planned Parenthood employees, who had come forward from other clinics around the country.
Morrison had declared in May 2007 that he was clearing Planned Parenthood of criminal wrongdoing. However, when Kline took over Morrison’s position as DA of Johnson County, he continued his criminal investigation into Planned Parenthood’s failure to report child rape and conspiracy to commit illegal late-term abortions.
Morrison then joined with Planned Parenthood in a legal action against Kline to deprive him (as well as Judge Richard Anderson) of redacted copies of the medical records. That evidence formed the basis of the 107 criminal counts (including 23 felonies), which CHPP still faces today. While Morrison did not succeed in stopping Kline from filing the case, the legal action created a delay that ensured that Kline was not able to prosecute the case before leaving office in January 2009.
Only two years later, has the criminal case against CHPP begun to move forward again.
Phill Kline: Legal battles have cost me $200,000
Stanek said that at the end of the day Kline resumed the stand, and testified that Morrison had denied him legal representation, even though he was being sued by abortion clinics for his actions in his public capacity as AG.
Kline said that he was forced to obtain private counsel, which has cost him $200,000 in legal fees. He said these legal costs have never been reimbursed by the state.
LifeSiteNews.com spoke with Kline at the conclusion of the day, and asked what he hoped would be the outcome of his trial.
“My hope and prayer is that the truth, which I believe was revealed in that hearing panel, comes out,” said Kline.
Kline also said that he hoped the Kansas legislature would take a renewed look at his investigation into the victims of child rape, unreported by abortion providers, “and that those in the executive branch of government might be willing to take a look and determine what needs to be done to ensure that appropriate investigations like ours move forward without undue interference.”
See the complete list of LSN stories by Peter Smith on the Kline trial:
* 107-count criminal case begins against Planned Parenthood in Kansas
* Phill Kline ethics trial: Day 1 – Live update
* Kansas abortionists failed to report 166 potential cases of child rape: Phill Kline trial day 2
* Phill Kline attorney makes witness sweat in Planned Parenthood ethics complaint case
* DA’s diary snatching brings new twist to Phill Kline ethics trial, potential crime
* Kansas Travesty: 249 child-age abortions over 3 years, just four sex abuse reports: Kline Hearings
* Kansas judge testifies ‘probable cause’ existed to investigate criminal PP activity: Kline Hearings
* Kline did not violate judge’s order in secret Planned Parenthood case: judge’s legal counsel
* Planned Parenthood gambit: beat Phill Kline charges, defeat Live Action?
* Former Tiller attorney combed CD of sensitive records from Kline investigation
* The Phill Kline saga: Planned Parenthood protected, children forgotten, the prosecutor prosecuted
* Day 6 trial: Kline protected sexual assault victim privacy, Tiller compromised patient privacy
* Video: Kline says ‘those in power’ blocked Planned Parenthood, Tiller investigation
* Witness: Phill Kline didn’t need/want adult patient names
* Prosecutor tells investigator: we don’t have to accept report clearing Phill Kline
* UPDATE: Kline tells ethics panel, ‘You are violating my due process rights!’
* ‘It is wrong!’: Phill Kline blocked from presenting full defense, calling all witnesses
* Phill Kline: Kansas Supreme Court ‘obstructed’ child rape investigation to save Planned Parenthood
Trump vows to push LGBT rights, hedges on pro-marriage litmus test
CONCORD, New Hampshire, February 8, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – Does Donald Trump support the gay agenda or oppose it? On the eve of the New Hampshire primary, observers are still scratching their heads about where the GOP frontrunner actually stands.
Trump has repeatedly and consistently said he supports the natural definition of marriage, but can a President Trump be relied on to promote it resolutely and cogently? It is this question that has many marriage activists expressing concern about his increasingly likely hold on the GOP nomination.
In fact, the National Organization for Marriage has gone so far as to say that Trump has “abandoned” the pro-marriage cause.
Trump himself underscored the problem on the weekend when he told a New Hampshire television station that from the White House he would push “equality” for homosexuals even further forward.
A cable news reporter self-identifying as a lesbian asked him last Thursday after a rally in Exeter, "When President Trump is in office, can we look for more forward motion on equality for gays and lesbians?"
“Well, you can and look - again, we're going to bring people together. That's your thing, and other people have their thing,” Trump told Sue O’Connell of New England Cable News. “We have to bring all people together. And if we don't, we're not gonna have a country anymore. It's gonna be a total mess.”
Following the comments, Trump appeared Sunday on ABC’s This Week program with George Stephanopoulos and would not commit to appointing Supreme Court justices who’d overturn Obergefell, though that would be his “preference.”
“We’re going to look at judges. They’ve got to be great judges. They’ve got to be conservative judges. We’re going to see how they stand depending on what their views are. But that would be my preference,” he told Stephanopoulos. “I would prefer that they stand against, but we’ll see what happens. It depends on the judge.”
Trump’s comments follow his statements during a Fox News Sunday interview last week, when he said, “If I'm elected, I would be very strong on putting certain judges on the bench that I think maybe could change things, but they've got a long way to go.”
“[Marriage] should be a states rights issue,” Trump continued. “I can see changes coming down the line, frankly.”
When asked by Fox if he “might try to appoint justices to overrule the decision on same-sex marriage,” Trump replied, “I would strongly consider that, yes.”
The real estate mogul criticized the Supreme Court for the Obergefell decision imposing homosexual “marriage” on all 50 states last June, but then later in August, Trump voiced support to NBC News for banning companies from firing employees on the basis of sexual orientation. “I don't think it should be a reason” to fire workers, he said at the time on Meet the Press.
The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) and a number influential evangelicals have endorsed Senator Ted Cruz in the race for president. The Texas senator has not only committed to appointing pro-marriage justices, but says the president and the states can rightly defy the “fundamentally illegitimate” ruling just as President Lincoln defied the Dred Scott decision.
NOM has also been highly critical of Trump, saying he has “abandoned” their cause. The organization said in its January 27 blog post just prior to the Iowa Caucus that “Donald Trump does not support a constitutional amendment to restore marriage to our laws. Worse, he has publicly abandoned the fight for marriage. When the US Supreme Court issued their illegitimate ruling redefining marriage, Trump promptly threw in the towel with these comments on MSNBC: ‘You have to go with it. The decision's been made, and that is the law of the land.’”
NOM had said the week before that Trump “has made no commitments to fight for marriage, or the rights of supporters of marriage to not be discriminated against and punished for refusing to go along with the lie that is same-sex 'marriage.'”
New Hampshire voters have been tracked as showing support for homosexual “marriage,” as a poll last February showed 52 percent of Republican NH primary voters saying opposing gay “marriage” is unacceptable.
The latest CNN/WMUR tracking poll shows that overall 33 percent of likely Republican primary voters support Trump, giving him a growing 17-point lead over the nearest GOP contender. RealClearPolitics polling average in the state puts him at 31.0 percent support, with Marco Rubio second at 14.7, John Kasich third at 13.2, and Ted Cruz fourth at 12.7.
The unravelling of Chris Christie
February 8, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) -- I'm a member of the clergy and for the past eight years have lobbied the powerful in Trenton, covering the administrations of both Governors Jon Corzine and Chris Christie. I did much of my work on behalf of the New Jersey Family Policy Council, associated with Tony Perkins' Family Research Council. I am currently the President of the Center for Garden State Families.
Those of us who are engaged in the fight to secure the right to believe, speak, and practice the Christian faith in America were all heartened by the election of a Pro-Life Governor in 2009. Not only did Chris Christie run as an open Pro-Lifer, but he adopted a position in support of natural marriage in the course of the campaign. And when legislative Democrats attempted to pass same-sex marriage in the lame duck session, so they could have outgoing Governor Corzine sign it into law, Chris Christie rallied opposition and stopped it. Those were the early, hopeful days; but as Governor, Chris Christie has presented himself in an inconsistent, even scatterbrained way, often making decisions that go against earlier stated beliefs.
One of his first decisions was to make a liberal Democrat the state's Attorney General. Once approved by the Senate, and she was, the Attorney General could not be fired by the Governor, as was the case with other cabinet officers. This gave a liberal Democrat enormous power and she used it to join up with liberal Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley in filing a brief against Christians in a case called Christian Legal Society v. Martinez. Just one day after being sworn in, the newly appointed state Attorney General took the most aggressive legal posture available to defend former Governor Corzine’s one-gun-a-month handgun rationing law, moving to dismiss an NRA lawsuit to overturn the law, and later vigorously opposing the NRA’s motion for a preliminary injunction in the case. Because of this appointment, New Jersey did not join in the lawsuits to overturn ObamaCare.
Governor Christie appointed a radical "sexologist" to run the NJ Department of Children & Families. This appointee would later resign when it emerged that she had held the top job in an organization that had supported a study advocating the normalization of some forms of adult-child sex.
His judicial appointments were also confusing. While claiming to oppose same-sex marriage, Governor Christie nominated an openly gay Republican to the state Supreme Court who supported it. Even Democrats wouldn't support this plainly unqualified appointment, and he never served. The Governor supported the advancement of a liberal Democrat to the job of Chief Justice, while refusing to support the re-appointment of a Republican and the Court's most conservative member. He also appointed a controversial defense attorney who had defended a number of Islamic extremists who had violated immigration law.
In 2013, many of those in the Christian community opposed legislation that banned young people from receiving counseling and therapy to lead them away from homosexuality. As an ex-gay myself, I could have personally attested to the benefits of such counseling, much of which is no different than what is found in contemporary twelve-step programs. However, the Christian community opposing the ban was not afforded the opportunity to meet with the Governor. Only the homosexual community with its pro-ban agenda was given that benefit.
Click "like" if you want to defend true marriage.
I don't blame the Governor for this, but I do blame his staff. As President Ronald Reagan said, "personnel is policy," and Governor Christie's choices in personnel have not advanced the policies he campaigned on, and often it was the direct opposite.
New Jersey ended up being just the second state in the country that only allows young people to receive counseling that advocates homosexuality, but bans by law counseling that advocates heterosexuality. When he signed it into law, Governor Christie embraced the made-up "science" of the propagandists, when he cited un-specified "research" that "sexual orientation is determined at birth." This is the so-called "gay-gene" trope that has baffled those engaged in the Science of Genetics because it has never been discovered.
As a candidate for Governor, Chris Christie talked the talk and raised the expectations of Christians in New Jersey. As Governor, and especially in his appointments, Christie undermined our confidence in his leadership. Christians should ask tough questions before extending our faith in him again.
Pro-life investigator hits back with new footage after judge blocks release of abortion sting videos
SAN FRANCISCO, February 8, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) -- A new video from the Center for Medical Progress (CMP) shows two National Abortion Federation (NAF) employees saying that abortion clinics would be interested in kickbacks from profits on fetal tissue and body part sales.
The video comes three days after a San Francisco imposed an injunction sought by NAF against CMP videos that one of the abortion group's attorneys said meant that "NAF's members can sleep a little easier tonight."
CMP accused the pro-abortion organization of hiding behind the court.
According to U.S. District Court Judge William H. Orrick, however, NAF "made...a showing" that release of CMP videos would harm rights to privacy, freedom of association, and liberty of NAF members.
"Critical to my decision are that the defendants agreed to injunctive relief if they breached the agreements and that, after the release of defendants’ first set of Human Capital Project videos and related information in July 2015, there has been a documented, dramatic increase in the volume and extent of threats to and harassment of NAF and its members," wrote Orrick.
Additionally, the judge found that CMP's videos “thus far have not been pieces of journalistic integrity, but misleadingly edited videos and unfounded assertions," and that nobody from the abortion industry “admitted to engaging in, agreed to engage in, or expressed interest in engaging in potentially illegal sale of fetal tissue for profit" in the CMP videos.
However, in a new video released today that is unrelated to the injunction, a NAF employee told undercover journalists that kickbacks "definitely [sound] like something some [of] our members would be really interested in," with another chiming in that money from private purchasers to abortion clinics were "a win-win" for clinics.
The undercover investigators, who had purported to be part of a biotechnology company with an interest in fetal parts, were offered the chance to be at a NAF conference. “We have an exhibit hall and then we also have the general conference. But I mean, this is a very great way to talk to our members. We have a group purchasing program through our membership,” the journalists were told. “So it seems like this would be a really great option to be able to offer our members, as well.”
This is the second ruling against CMP in recent weeks, and the second by Orrick since July. The San Francisco judge issued a restraining order against CMP related to NAF's 2014 and 2015 meetings in San Francisco and Baltimore that Friday's ruling extended.
The other recent ruling came in the form of an indictment of CMP's David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt. Merritt and Daleiden turned themselves into Houston authorities for booking and processing last week. After being released on bail, Daleiden spoke at a LifeSiteNews/Christian Defense Coalition press conference after which more than 100,000 petition signatures backing Daleiden were dropped off to the Harris County, Texas District Attorney's office.
According to Orrick, who says he reviewed the more than 500 hours of recordings from CMP, "It should be said that the majority of the recordings lack much public interest, and despite the misleading contentions of defendants, there is little that is new in the remainder of the recordings. Weighed against that public interest are NAF’s and its members’ legitimate interests in their rights to privacy, security, and association by maintaining the confidentiality of their presentations and conversations at NAF Annual Meetings. The balance is strongly in NAF’s favor.”
NAF did not respond to a request for comment about the allegations by Orrick and a NAF spokesperson that CMP's videos have caused threats and other security concerns against NAF members.