Wendy Wright Defends Ohio “Heartbeat Bill”
Wendy Wright, president of Concerned Women for America (CWA), joined Ohio state leaders and legislators in the fight to defend life yesterday as House members debated Ohio’s potential “Heartbeat” bill. The bill, H.B.125, which would ban abortions after the detection of a fetal heartbeat was delayed in the House Committee hearing room as the Chairman called for more time in deliberation.
Wright gave testimony (see below) in favor of the bill. Her testimony came as a welcome support to CWA state leader Bobbi Radeck and the pro-life community within Ohio. Wright recounted facts already noted by the medical community and those who shared their regret of abortion. She reminded those in the room that this bill would solve the deception behind the oft-asked question, “Is it a baby?” The usual deceptive response is, “No, it’s a product of conception; it’s a blood clot; it’s a piece of tissue.” Wright also pointed out that “in the 20 years I have been in pro-life work, I’ve noticed a contradiction. Abortion groups claim to represent women when, in fact, they represent abortionists against the interests of women.”
If passed, this bill would be the strongest abortion bill in the country and save the lives of innocent children with a heartbeat and without a voice.
CWA President Wendy Wright submitted the following testimony:
Testimony by Wendy Wright, President
Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee
March 23, 2011
Concerned Women for America is the nation’s largest public policy women’s organization, with 500,000 members nationwide and nearly 20,000 members in Ohio.
The support for the Heartbeat bill is impressive. One of the nation’s top constitutional lawyers on abortion, Walter Weber, came personally to testify for it. A woman who, as a baby, survived an abortion provided proof that she is wanted and valued. And this committee heard the heartbeats of unborn babies – the youngest ever to testify.
Women testified that if they had heard the heartbeats of their babies they would not have chosen abortion. That is perhaps the most important reason why abortion groups oppose this bill. If women hear the heartbeat of their baby, they will know that what is within them is a living human being.
In the 20 years I have been in pro-life work, I’ve noticed a contradiction. Abortion groups claim to represent women when, in fact, they represent abortionists against the interests of women.
The Supreme Court has noticed as well. Many times it has rejected claims that limitations on abortion are unconstitutional, and it has upheld restrictions that lower courts have overturned. When presented the facts, reasoning, and opportunity, the Court has oftentimes recognized that restrictions on abortion enhance women’s rights and protect constitutional rights.1
When the Supreme Court upheld a ban on partial-birth abortion in 2007, it recognized the deep pain a woman can experience when she learns what was done to her child. Justice Kennedy, the author of that decision and often called the swing vote, hauntingly wrote:
“It is self-evident that a mother who comes to regret her choice to abort must struggle with grief more anguished and sorrow more profound when she learns, only after the event, what she once did not know: that she allowed a doctor to pierce the skull and vacuum the fast-developing brain of her unborn child, a child assuming the human form,” Gonzales v. Carhart, 550 U.S. 124, 159-60 (2007).
This committee has heard what the Supreme Court has not yet heard, the heartbeat of an unborn child and the testimony of women who found out, only too late, that their abortion violently ended the life of a baby with a beating heart.
Medically Accurate Information
Abortionists routinely give misleading or incorrect information to women about their unborn baby.
Former abortion provider Carol Everett says one question women usually ask is: “Is it a baby?” And the usual response is, “No, it’s a product of conception; it’s a blood clot; it’s a piece of tissue.”
Recent undercover tapes show Planned Parenthood abortionists and employees giving medically incorrect information to patients.2
One told a woman who was reportedly six to eight weeks pregnant that her baby has “no arms, no legs, no heart, no head, no brain.” Another, when asked if a baby at 10 weeks has a heartbeat, said, “Heartbeat is when the fetus is active in the uterus – can survive – which is about seventeen or eighteen weeks.”
Without this bill, abortionists will conceal medically accurate, vital information from women. Women want to know that their baby has a heartbeat.
Would abortionists do abortions on women who are not pregnant? Numerous reports from investigative journalists, state inspectors, and abortion providers have revealed abortionists who routinely committed abortions on women who were not pregnant.3
In Doe v. Bolton, the companion case to Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court upheld a law that prohibited any abortion that was not “necessary.”
By requiring testing to detect a heartbeat and letting the mother hear it, this bill protects against abortionists committing abortions on women who are not pregnant.
Ohio Man Charged with Murder By Abortion
Ohio’s homicide law4 encompasses unborn babies without “trumping” Roe v. Wade.
Last October in Columbus, Ohio, a man was charged with attempted murder for trying to force his girlfriend, at gunpoint, to have an abortion. He was originally charged with kidnapping and unlawful carrying of a concealed weapon. But a grand jury expanded the indictment to include “attempted murder” against the unborn child.5
Abortion proponents disingenuously complain that legislators should not address the Heartbeat bill, but focus on fiscal issues. Yet they vigorously fight bills to end the government funding of abortion and of Planned Parenthood.
Planned Parenthood makes a hefty $191 million a year from abortions. It gets $363 million a year in tax dollars. Since Planned Parenthood has a newfound concern over government finances, it should agree to unburden taxpayers from that expense.
Abortion itself leads to increased medical costs, borne by us all through government and private insurance, from complications and consequences such as:
Subsequent pre-term births; Sterility, provoking costly fertility treatments; Breast cancer; Post-abortion infections, hemorrhaging, and psychological problems.
What women want
The Heartbeat bill does not subordinate women to their baby. It treats both equally. It elevates science, human dignity, and human rights above abortion politics.
Some legislators and judges only listen to one side: abortion groups who claim to represent women.
Now it’s time to listen to us: Women who respect human life and care about the weakest among us.
And we support The Heartbeat Bill. We urge you to do the same.
1. Examples cited by Mario Diaz, Esq., Concerned Women for America Policy Director for Legal Issues, include:
- Requiring second-trimester abortions be done in licensed hospitals or clinics.
In Simonopoulos v. Virginia, 462 U.S. 506 (1983), abortionists opposed and the Court upheld a law requiring second-trimester abortions to take place in licensed hospitals or clinics.
- Requiring that only licensed doctors commit abortions.
In Mazurek v. Armstrong, 520 U.S. 968 (1997), the Court upheld a Montana statute that restricted the performance of abortions to licensed physicians.
- Having woman sign a consent form.
In Planned Parenthood of Central Mo. v. Danforth, 428 U.S. 52 (1976), Planned Parenthood opposed having the mother sign a consent form. The Court upheld that provision, even as it invalidated other parts.
- Requiring that women be given full information, a 24-hour waiting period so they are not pushed by abortion personnel into a quick decision, and reporting requirements to keep abortionists honest.
Although the Court reaffirmed Roe in Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey, 505 U.S. 833 (1992), it still regards the decision as a national catastrophe because informed consent requirements, 24-hour waiting periods, parental consent provisions, and reporting and recordkeeping requirements in a Pennsylvania statute were all found to be constitutional.
- Limits on federal funding or Medicaid funding of abortion.
In Beal v. Doe, 432 U.S. 438 (1977), abortionists opposed a limit on the use of Medicaid funds to abortions that are “medically necessary.” The Court upheld the Pennsylvania law. Harris v. McRae, 448 U.S. 297 (1980). Abortionists vigorously opposed the Hyde Amendment’s restrictions on federal dollars going to abortion.
- Restricting state funding for abortions.
In Williams v. Zbaraz, 448 U.S. 358 (1980), they opposed a prohibition on state funds paying for abortions, even when the statute had an exception to preserve the life of the mother. The Court upheld it.
- Favoring childbirth over abortion.
In Maher v. Roe, 432 U.S. 464 (1977), abortionists again opposed any federal spending limits on abortion. They especially objected to the Court’s upholding Connecticut’s policy of favoring “childbirth over abortion.”
- Requiring parental consent, or a second opinion for post-viability abortions.
Planned Parenthood Golden Gate in California recently closed due to financial problems, yet it spent more than $750,000 to defeat three ballot initiatives that would require parental notification before an abortion is committed on a minor. In H.L. v. Matheson, 450 U.S. 398 (1981), abortionists opposed a parental consent law for unemancipated minors, even with provisions to allow the courts to intervene. The Court upheld the statute. In Planned Parenthood Assn. of Kansas City, Mo. v. Ashcroft, 462 U.S. 476 (1983), Planned Parenthood opposed and the Court upheld a parental consent statute, and the requirement of a second physician at post-viability abortions and certain reporting requirements. Abortionists fought Lambert v. Wicklund, 520 U.S. 292 (1997), where the Court upheld a Montana parental notification statute 9-0.
- Requiring that abortionists provide timely notice to a parent before committing an abortion on a minor.
In Ohio v. Akron Center for Reproductive Health, 497 U.S. 502 (1990), they objected to a requirement that a doctor provide timely notice to a parent of a minor seeking an abortion, even with a judicial bypass. The Court upheld it.
- Requiring tests to determine the viability of unborn babies.
In Webster v. Reproductive Health Services, 492 U.S. 490 (1989), abortionists opposed requirements for viability tests after twenty weeks and the barring of both the use of public facilities and public employees from participating in abortions, even with a life of the mother exception. The Court upheld it.
- Banning an abortion method.
Abortionists opposed the ban on partial-birth abortion that the U.S. Supreme Court upheld in Gonzales v. Carhart, 550 U.S. 124 (2007)
2. The Rosa Acuna Project of Live Action, found at http://www.liveaction.org/rosaacuna
3. Life Dynamics has compiled examples at http://www.deathroe.com/choice_sux/details.cfm?Category=21. They include:
- A state inspection of a Florida abortion clinic found that pregnancy test results were not recorded in five of ten abortion patient records. They concluded that there was no indication that half of these patients that received abortions were pregnant.
- In a sworn affidavit, a former employee of Kansas abortionist William Malcolm Knarr stated:
“The pathology reports were known sometimes to come back saying, ‘No products of conception.’ The women were never told about the pathology report. . . I know of at least two individuals whom Knarr knew were not pregnant and he went ahead and did an abortion procedure, charged them for the abortion procedure, and treated it as a termination of a pregnancy.”
- A legislative analysis report on Michigan’s Informed Consent bill, which would require physicians perform an ultrasound before performing an abortion states, “some abortion clinics perform abortions on the basis of the results of a urine test alone. These tests can give false positives. There is anecdotal testimony to suggest that women, in some circumstances, have been given an abortion when there was no pregnancy. Requiring an ultrasound will give additional verification that the woman is pregnant and protect the health of a woman by ensuring she is not given an unnecessary procedure.”
- Nevada abortionist Algis Martell was prohibited from doing abortions by the state Board of Medical Examiners because of complaints that he had “misjudged women’s pregnancies and performed abortion procedures on women who weren’t pregnant.”
- Authorities found that New York abortionist Maxen Samuel routinely performed abortion on women who weren’t pregnant. Samuel’s wife testified that, to make more money, they told most of the unsuspecting patients at the clinic that they were pregnant. Then Samuel would administer general anesthesia and perform a bogus abortion or simply tell patients they had done the procedure after they woke. The couple was arrested after they offered to perform abortions on two undercover agents from the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office. Both agents were told their urine had tested positive, although neither was pregnant.
- In his book, Give Me a Break: How I Exposed Hucksters, Cheats, and Scam Artists and Became the Scourge of the Liberal Media, John Stossel writes:
“I had heard some (abortion) doctors were so greedy they’d perform abortions on women who weren’t pregnant. . . .I sent two female researchers to six abortion doctorswith samples of my urine. Two of the six clinics told the women they were pregnant and tried to abort them. They only escaped by jumping off the tables and shouting, ‘No! I’ve changed my mind!’ We got the conversations on tape and broadcast them. Both doctors closed their clinics and disappeared.”
4. Ohio law: Homicide and Assault in the Ohio Revised Code (2903) found at http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/2903
(A) “Unlawful termination of another’s pregnancy” means causing the death of an unborn member of the species homo sapiens, who is or was carried in the womb of another, as a result of injuries inflicted during the period that begins with fertilization and that continues unless and until live birth occurs.
(B) “Another’s unborn” or “such other person’s unborn” means a member of the species homo sapiens, who is or was carried in the womb of another, during a period that begins with fertilization and that continues unless and until live birth occurs.
5. Peter J. Smith, “Taking Girlfriend to Abortion Clinic at Gunpoint Gets Man Attempted Murder Charge,” Life Site News, October 20, 2010, accessed at http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/archive/ldn/2010/oct/10102007 on March 21, 2011.