Activists Sending Coat Hangers to Congress for Abortion Funding in Health Care

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Nov 16, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Activists Sending Coat Hangers to Congress for Abortion Funding in Health Care

by Steven Ertelt Editor
November 16
, 2009

Washington, DC ( — Borrowing a page from the playbook of pro-abortion members of Congress who recently used the myth of illegal back alley abortions to oppose the Stupak amendment, grassroots pro-abortion activists are sending coat hangers to Congress to urge taxpayer funding of abortion in the health care bills.

The pro-abortion activist group CREDO has a new campaign it has begun to send a message and coat hangers to the 20 typically pro-abortion Democratic members of Congress who voted for the Stupak amendment.

"Sign this petition and send a coat hanger to the 20 formerly pro-choice Democrats — all men — who voted to pass the Stupak Amendment," the group’s web site says.

With a background image of a coat hanger displayed across the screen, CREDO adds that it is urging "Congressional leadership to do everything they can to ensure the health care bill that comes out of committee does not take us back to an era of coat hangers and back alley abortions."

"Tell House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid that the final health care bill that emerges from the conference committee can’t turn the clock back on women’s rights," the group adds.

Pro-life blogger Jill Stanek noticed the campaign, which CREDO unveiled last week, and says pro-life advocates would have their own ideas on what to send elected officials.

"Were pro-lifers to attempt the same sort of gimmick we’d have a couple options — photos of hacked mothers being taken by ambulance from front alley abortion mills, or photos of hacked babies after being aborted," she said.

Stanek also says the notion of thousands of woman dying from illegal abortions is one that is not true.

"According to the Journal of the American Medical Association there were 201 deaths in 1965 and 119 in 1970," she noted.

"Since abortion has been legalized, I’d venture to say at least as many mothers if not more die every year these days. We don’t know because abortion stats aren’t rigorously kept, thanks to liberal feminist and abortion industry influence," she added.

"The only surviving NARAL founder, Dr. Bernard Nathanson, now pro-life, has stated they simply made up their ‘10,000 annually’ claim," she concluded.

As reported last week, several members of the House relied on false back alley abortion arguments to oppose banning abortion funding.

Rep. Barbara Lee, a California Democrat, said during the debate, "This amendment takes us one step back to those dark days of back-alley abortions"

Jane Harmon, another California Democrat, added, "I am old enough to remember the days of back alley abortions. Some women I know had them. I cannot bear the idea that the 111th Congress would restore that horror."

Yet, as Stanek noted, Nathanson admits NARAL lied about the number of women who died from illegal abortions when testifying before the Supreme Court in 1972.

"We spoke of 5,000 – 10,000 deaths a year…. I confess that I knew the figures were totally false … it was a useful figure, widely accepted, so why go out of our way to correct it with honest statistics?" he said.

According to figures from the National Center for Health Statistics and the Center for Disease Control, women continued to die from abortions — even after they became legal nationwide.

The numbers show legalizing abortion didn’t make it any safer as 25 women died from legal abortions in 1973, 25 in 1974, and 29 in 1975.

From 1976 through 1987, another 135 women died from legal abortions — although the numbers are very low estimates because not all deaths are reported.

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