Politically influential abortionist George Tiller failed to follow Kansas late-term abortion law and substantiate the need for such procedures with a second independent opinion, according to 19 charges filed by Attorney General Paul Morrison.
“The Kansas late-term abortion statute, K.S.A. 65-6703, states that the doctor performing the abortion must have ‘a documented referral from another physician not legally or financially affiliated with the physician performing or inducing the abortion and both physicians determine that: (1) the abortion is necessary to preserve the life of the pregnant woman; or (2) a continuation of the pregnancy will cause a substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function of the pregnant woman,'” Morrison said in a statement his office has released.
“Due to the serious nature of late-term abortion, the Legislature chose to require that two independent doctors make the determination of ‘substantial and irreversible’ harm before an abortion can be performed,” Morrison said.
His charges allege Tiller and the second doctor who endorsed Tiller’s opinions, Ann Kristin Neuhaus, “were not financially and legally independent as required by Kansas law.”
Troy Newman, president of Operation Rescue, which has been lobbying for investigations into Tiller’s activities and seeking charges if substantiated for several years, said the case is clear.
“On its face, Tiller is violating the late-term abortion statute,” he told WND. “He’s taking lives of late-term healthy children for trivial reasons.”
Newman said the pending prosecution will mean a “Pandora’s box” has been opened for the abortion industry.
“These filings stemmed from [former Attorney General Phill] Kline’s investigation of 2003. The question then arises what about 2004, 2005 and 2006. They’ve been doing the same exact thing forever.”
Morrison’s announcement called the situation “technical violations” and derided Kline’s decision before he left office to file 30 criminal counts against Tiller, alleging he failed to follow the state’s reporting requirements and performed illegal late-term abortions, as politically motivated.
“During our review of Kline’s charges, we found that Kline was absolutely wrong on all 30 of his charges. He was zero for 30,” Morrison said. “Not only was his understanding of Kansas’ law incorrect, it was based on his personal political beliefs and not the law as it was written.”
He noted, however, that during his review of the documentation obtained by Kline the new charges arose.
But Newman said the counts are significant.
“I wouldn’t call it a paperwork violation. The intent of the law is that children do not die, and two independent physicians would concur that the mother’s major bodily functions would suffer substantial and irreversible impairment if the pregnancy is continued,” he said.
“What this represents is a conspiracy between two abortionists who conspired to take the life of an otherwise healthy child who otherwise had protection under Kansas statute,” he said.
Newman said the law was written to prevent doctors from doing exactly what was done in the case.
He also noted that there still are open questions about the reasons for the abortions, because neither Tiller nor Neuhaus is “a qualified psychiatrist.”
He cited the evalution from Dr. Paul McHugh, a nationally noted psychiatrist who was hired by Kline to examine redacted medical records obtained by the state from Tiller and deliver an expert opinion about the validity of the psychiatric diagnoses used by Tiller to justify post-viability abortions.
As WND columnist Jack Cashill has documented, those evaluations produced no credible evidence that there was a reasonable basis for the abortions.
In an interview, arranged by Women Influencing the Nation, McHugh said the reasons cited by Tiller for performing abortions were “social,” not “psychiatric.”
“Some of them [the reasons] would be construed as trivial,” he said. “A trivial one would be not being able to go to a rock concert.”
None of the anonymous case files included a full psychiatric profile, he said. “There’s a life at stake here. Much more serious issues need to be brought up, especially if you want to obey the Kansas law.”
When McHugh’s statements became public Morrison’s office immediately launched a campaign to shut him up, hand-delivering a letter to McHugh, who was scheduled to address a community meeting. The letter included an order requiring that he discontinue making any statements about his review.
“We hereby demand that you cease and desist from any and all such statements, as they threaten our ongoing investigation and violate the privacy of the women whose medical records you reviewed,” the letter said. “Your statements to the media and to Operation Rescue and others regarding this investigation may well violate [state] standards and threaten our ability to conduct a fair trial.”
Newman views the filing of charges as an extraordinary success because of the political influence Tiller holds. Morrison was benefited by a series of mailings from a campaign group in 2006 that condemned Kline. Those mailings were sponsored by a group that shared a street address with the Pro-Kan-Do lobby funded by Tiller, according to newspaper reports.
The Legislature also refused requests to order a prosecution in the case, and the governor is staunchly pro-abortion, he noted.
“[Morrison] has been boxed in, and forced to file these charges, because of the immense amount of public pressure and public scrutiny and overwhelming evidence Operation Rescue and others have shown to the public,” Newman said.
He described the development as a crack in the foundation of the abortion industry.
Just a day earlier WND reported that Morrison had cleared Tiller, nick-named “Tiller the Killer” for his late-term abortion business activities, of some other charges.
Morrison said those 15 counts involved allegation Tiller did not comply with state law in reporting the reasons for late-term abortions.
Tiller’s defense attorney, Dan Monnat, at that point at told the Wichita Eagle, “It looks like finally there is being an independent and professional investigation conducted. As we’ve said all along, we are confident that once it is concluded Dr. Tiller will be found innocent of all charges.”
Tiller was the subject of a multi-year investigation by Kline, who filed 30 criminal counts against him. However, those charges were dismissed by a judge with connections to Tiller’s lawyers on the request of a prosecutor who also had connections to the other players in the case.
Then Kline appointed a special independent prosecutor to handle the case, but, as WND reported, the special prosecutor was fired by Morrison as soon as he took office.
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