The Corner

Sebelius and Abortion

Clark Forsythe and Denise Burke go through what’s good and bad in her record–and find that the bad vastly outweighs the good, from a pro-life perspective.

[Gov. Sebelius] has routinely opposed or vetoed several abortion-accountability bills, including medically-supported clinic regulation legislation which she vetoed in both 2003 and 2005.  The need for this critical legislation was predicated, in large part, on evidence of shocking conditions in Kansas abortion clinics.  For example, two inspections of the same Topeka abortion clinic discovered fetal remains stored in the same refrigerator as food; a dead rodent in the clinic hallway; overflowing, uncovered disposal bins containing medical waste; unlabeled, pre-drawn syringes with controlled substances in an unlocked refrigerator; improperly labeled and expired medicines; carpeted floor in the surgical procedure room; and visible dirt and general disarray throughout the clinic. Dr. Krishna Rajanna, who operated the unsanitary clinic, also consistently violated the practice guidelines for conscious sedation.

Sebelius’s defenders say that she “personally opposes” abortion, the public relevance of which is unclear, and that the number of abortions fell during her governorship. Michael New, in response, points out that Kansas’s abortion statistics are not reliable, that the decline began before her governorship, and that her actions in office do not appear to have had much to do with it.

If she were from any other state in the Union, Senator Brownback would be opposing her.

Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.


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