Late-Term Abortion Practitioner Moving to Iowa, Maryland, Indiana

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Nov 10, 2010   |   12:19PM   |   Omaha, NE

Late-term abortion practitioner LeRoy Carhart has opened up about his moving his abortion business to three new states in a new interview following a report revealing he’s expanding his business.

Carhart has confirmed the report that he will be opening new abortion centers in an interview with the Omaha World-Herald newspaper.
He confirmed he will be opening new abortion centers in Council Bluffs, Iowa — another suburb of Omaha, Nebraska, where he is based — and in Maryland and Indianapolis, Indiana.

The Iowa location will likely be set up on the south side of the city and he said he plans to open the abortion business sometime after the first of the year. The Maryland abortion business will be located just outside Washington, D.C. and is slated for a December 6 opening. The Indianapolis location will be an expansion of an existing abortion business, he said.

The new abortion centers will cost $1.5 million and will require “some financing and a lot of fundraising” to open, Carhart told the World-Herald.
Carhart also told the newspaper he doesn’t care what pro-life advocates think of his expansion into other states. They are already pushing back against his plans and say he likely will lack the funding to see them through.
“I don’t really worry much about that. I’m more worried about the ability for women to have a place to go,” he said.
Carhart also told the newspaper he is moving to other states because of the fetal pain law Nebraska lawmakers passed that bans abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy because unborn children have the capacity of feeling pain during the abortion.
“This sort of forced us. We had to do it,” Carhart said. “In Iowa and Maryland, we can do the later cases.”

But Maggie DeWitte, of Iowans for L.I.F.E., told the Chicago Tribune: “This is a complete and total devastation for women in Iowa.”

The late-term abortion practitioner doesn’t appear to be abandoning Nebraska entirely and told the newspaper he still plans on filing a lawsuit challenging the new law, saying, “We feel it’s definitely unconstitutional.”

“I believe that the laws in Nebraska are not constitutional,” Carhart said. “In the meantime, I need a place for women to go.”

Carhart is the late-term abortion practitioner who sued Nebraska over its partial-birth abortion ban in a case that saw the Supreme Court issue a ruling in 2000 overturning the ban and others passed in states across the country. The high court, after new appointments from President George W. Bush, reversed itself a few years later and upheld the partial-birth abortion ban Congress approved, saying a health exception is not a requirement for the law.

Julie Schmit-Albin, executive director of Nebraska Right to Life, talked with yesterday about the expansion and told the newspaper she believes the fetal pain bill worked in terms of pushing Carhart out of the state.

“This shows that LB 1103 was the right strategy,” she said. “It’s interesting to us that Carhart needed to expand to three other states to apply his late-term abortion trend.”

“The bulk of his business has been late-term abortions,” she said. “Why else does he need three new places in three states to be flying around doing abortions, those abortions that can’t be done in Nebraska?”

Should legislators in the three states take up similar legislation they may be able to stall Carhart’s efforts to expand.

Carhart’s existing Bellevue, Nebraska abortion center and the three new ones will be renamed as Carhart Centers for Sexual and Reproductive Health.