Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire Says State "Blessed" by Pro-Abortion Group
by Steven Ertelt
May 20, 2009
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire is under fire from pro-life advocates for recent comments at a fundraising event for a pro-abortion group. She told attendees that the state was "blessed" to have Washington NARAL there leading the charge for unlimited abortions.
Gregoire, a Catholic who has taken a solid pro-abortion position and tried to force pro-life pharmacists to dispense the morning after pill against their consciences, participated in the swanky NARAL event inside the Seattle Sheraton on Monday.
The luncheon was put together to honor the retirement of longtime NARAL Washington leader Karen Cooper, according to a Seattle PI news report.
"We are blessed to have had you as our great leader," Gregoire said of Cooper. The governor spoke of "those, candidly, not yet born who will benefit from your leadership."
The 40 or so pro-life advocates who protested outside the hotel were aghast by the statement and were dismayed that Gregoire has resisted rebuke from Catholic pro-life leaders.
Rev. Phil Bloom, pastor of Holy Family Parish in West Seattle, told the newspaper, "We want to challenge her on that. know the archbishop has had conversations with her. I would like to have a conversation with her. Why does she not connect this (life issue) with her faith?"
Gregoire has never endeared herself to pro-life advocates.
Under pressure from her, the state pharmacy board, in 2007, approved a rule requiring pharmacists to fill prescriptions for all drugs, including those that would violate their moral or religious beliefs.
Pro-life advocates filed suit against the decision and said in their lawsuit that the law forces them into "choosing between their livelihoods and their deeply held religious and moral beliefs."
U.S. District Judge Ronald Leighton ruled that pharmacists can refuse to fill a prescription for the morning after pill or other objectionable drugs if they refer the customer to another store where they can get the order filled.
"On the issue of free exercise of religion alone, the evidence before the court convinces it that the plaintiffs … have demonstrated both a likelihood of success on the merits and the possibility of irreparable injury," Leighton wrote.
Siding with Gregoire, the ACLU, Planned Parenthood and the pro-abortion Northwest Women’s Law Center are asking for Judge Leighton’s injunction to be overturned.
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