Elizabeth Warren calls for federal crackdown on pro-life pregnancy centers
Pro-life pregnancy centers may have bigger problems on their hands than vandals setting fires and smashing windows.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Democrat of Massachusetts, is leading the charge for a federal crackdown on the centers, which typically offer services such as free counseling, pregnancy tests, baby supplies and parenting support, but not abortions or abortion referrals.
“These are misleading outfits that defend groups that try to harass or scare pregnant women into getting abortions, and they do it under the guise of claiming to offer abortion services,” Ms Warren said. at a Wednesday press conference in Boston, reported by MassLive.
She and Sen. Bob Menendez, Democrat of New Jersey, introduced a bill that would direct the Federal Trade Commission to issue and enforce rules to “prohibit misleading or misleading advertising related to the provision of abortion services “. Violators would be subject to fines.
Ms Warren isn’t the only Democrat to target fast-growing facilities, which outnumber abortion clinics by about 3 to 1, following the Supreme Court’s decision last week overturning Roe v . Wade.
New York Attorney General Letitia James sent a letter Tuesday asking Google to exclude centers from ‘abortion’ searches, saying that “it seems that Google Maps often fails to distinguish between establishments that offer abortion services and those that do not”.
“In the expectation that New York will see increasing numbers of out-of-state pregnant women seeking abortion services in our state – often traveling here at great financial cost and inconvenience – it is imperative that pregnant women receive accurate information and can get the medical services they need efficiently and with minimal confusion,” she said.
Meanwhile, life advocates accuse Ms Warren of fueling the recent wave of attacks. At least 37 pro-life offices and facilities have been vandalized since the draft notice was leaked on May 2, according to a CatholicVote map.
For example, Life Choices, a pro-life pregnancy center in Longmont, Colorado, was damaged by fire and smoke in a June 25 attack that included the spray-painted message “if abortions don’t are not sure, neither are you”.
“Sen. Warren’s calls for a ‘crackdown’ will only fan the flames of violence against these nonprofits who have faced an unprecedented number of attacks since Justice Alito’s project leaked in the Dobbs case,” said Mallory Quigley, spokesperson for Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America.
She said that in any given year, the country’s 2,700 centers serve two million people, providing an estimated value of nearly $270 million by providing “high-quality medical care, material items such as diapers, formula, clothes, strollers, etc.
They also offer classes on childbirth, breastfeeding, parenting, and nutrition, as well as help with job search and GED testing, with an average customer satisfaction rate of 99%, or “above at Chick-fil-A, Netflix, Chipotle or the iPhone,” she said.
“Senator Warren willfully ignores the incredible work done by pregnancy centers,” Ms Quigley said in a statement.
Actress Patricia Heaton tweeted Wednesday that a pro-life pregnancy center she supports had to hire armed security guards “because of people like @SenWarren.”
“Our Medical Pregnancy Clinic serves client families for five years, providing top quality services to anyone who requests it. We raised $250,000 for a mobile medical clinic for underserved areas, treating everyone,” Ms Heaton said.
Our Medical Pregnancy Clinic serves client families for five years, providing top quality services to anyone who requests it. We raised $250,000 for a mobile medical clinic for underserved areas, treating everyone. Because of people like @SenWarren now we have to hire armed security guards. https://t.co/1cKPoeEU1I
— Patricia Heaton (@PatriciaHeaton) June 29, 2022
Catholic Action League executive director CJ Doyle said “Ms. Warren’s unsubstantiated claims blaming pro-life pregnancy centers for deception and predation are recklessly counterfactual”.
“Pro-life centers provide women with compassionate alternatives to abortion,” Doyle said. “They provide free tests, advice and material help to women facing difficult pregnancies. They try to find accommodation for women who may be forced to move due to a decision to continue with a pregnancy.
Even so, allegations of deception are on the rise. Ms Warren linked to a June 22 article in TIME magazine about a Texas woman who accidentally went to a pro-life pregnancy center in Dallas, thinking it was an abortion provider.
The progressive group The Alliance published a study indicating that most centers in California “make false or biased medical claims, particularly about pregnancy and abortion, including that ‘women suffer from guilt, depression and risk of drug addiction because of “post-abortion syndrome”.
Some of the larger networks, including Heartbeat International and Care Net, make it clear on their websites that they do not promote abortion and that their mission is to provide alternatives.
“The largest such center in eastern Massachusetts is Pregnancy Help Boston, which is a ministry of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston,” Doyle said. “He makes it clear on his website that he does not perform or refer abortions.”
Pro-life pregnancy centers date back to the 1970s, but their numbers have grown in recent decades. In some states, centers outnumber abortion providers by up to 11 to 1, according to Warren’s press release.
The Alliance reported that in liberal California, centers outnumber abortion clinics by 5:4. In New York, there are 120 centers compared to about 70 abortion providers, as a map from pro-choice group Pro-Truth shows.
Enemies of pro-life centers were spurred on by the High Court’s June 24 opinion, but so were their supporters.
Tami Fitzgerald, executive director of the North Carolina Values Coalition, said her group created an interactive map that “helps women find the nearest pro-life pregnancy center” due to concerns over laws relatively lenient on abortion in his state.
“With the exception of Virginia, every state bordering North Carolina has already gone pro-life because of the Heartbeat Bills or Trigger Laws they passed,” she said in a statement. statement Friday. “Unless we do something about it, North Carolina will become the largest abortion destination in the South, possibly tripling the number of abortions taking place in our state.”
Ms Fitzgerald added: ‘We CANNOT allow our state to become the abortion destination of the South!’
Warren’s bill is backed by a slew of pro-choice groups, including Planned Parenthood, NARAL Pro-Choice America, and the Center for Reproductive Rights.