Texas Lawmakers Hear About Karpen Killing Babies After Birth, OK Pro-Life Bills

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jun 14, 2013   |   6:59PM   |   Austin, TX

State legislators in Texas heard about late-term abortion practitioner Douglas Karpen, who kills babies after birth in a manner similar to Kermit Gosnell. They also passed pro-life bills to stop abortions and protect unborn children.

The hearing and votes came during a special session that pro-life Governor Rick Perry called. Texas Right to Life provides more details on the hearing and the bills that passed, including a 20-week ban on abortions related to the pain babies feel during abortions:

The four bills, filed in response to Governor Perry’s request for pro-life issues to be addressed in the special session, include Senate Bills 5, 13, 18, and 24.  Texas Right to Life is pleased by the passage of these life-affirming bills out of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee.

SB 5, the Pro-Life omnibus bill, establishes the state’s interest in protecting the lives of preborn Texans who feel pain, citing the peer-reviewed scientific data that shows preborn children experience excruciating pain during an abortion.  SB 5 would also require all abortion facilities to meet the same health and safety standards as ambulatory surgical centers and would also protect women by ensuring that abortion doctors secure admitting privileges at a nearby hospital.  SB 5 includes another provision regarding medical abortions with RU-486, the abortion pill, to require doctors dispensing these pills to be present throughout all steps of a chemical abortion.

Though debate in committee on Thursday lasted about four hours, the committee heard about the atrocities recently uncovered at the Houston abortion clinic operated by abortionist Douglas Karpen.  Karpen’s practice and the conviction of Kermit Gosnell brought to light the urgency of stopping the infanticide of fully-birthed newborns.

The committee recognized the need to enact protections for both children and pregnant women by moving these bills to consideration by the full Senate, which is expected next week.

Perry yesterday expanded the special session call to include legislation  relating to the regulation of abortion procedures, providers and facilities.

“The horrors of the national late-term abortion industry are continuing to come to light, one atrocity at a time. Sadly, some of those same atrocities happen in our own state. In Texas, we value all life, and we’ve worked to cultivate a culture that supports the birth of every child,” Gov. Perry said.

Perry added, “We have an obligation to protect unborn children, and to hold those who peddle these abortions to standards that would minimize the death, disease and pain they cause.”

Perry is referring to Douglas Karpen, a Houston abortion practitioner who is being considered the second Kermit Gosnell for killing babies born alive after abortion. A video expose’ of Douglas Karpen has three former abortion clinic employees of abortion practitioner Douglas Karpen exposing horrific practices that took place at his abortion clinic.

That a second Kermit Gosnell would be operating in Texas is so revolting that Lt. Governor David Dewhurst is demanding an investigation. Local officials responded and “Harris County authorities and the Texas Department of State Health Services are investigating, according to a report in the Houston Chronicle.

A collaboration of pro-life organizations, including Texas Alliance for Life, support measures to increase protection for unborn babies and tighten safety standards for abortion facilities.

“We are grateful to Gov. Rick Perry for adding protection of mothers and unborn babies to the issues considered in the special session,” said Joe Pojman, Executive Director of Texas Alliance for Life. “We believe that the recent allegations against Houston abortion physician Douglas Karpen, along with conviction of Kermit Gosnell, highlight the urgent need for pro-life legislation to be passed quickly. We cannot allow these atrocities to continue for two more years when we have the opportunity to address them right now.”

In the video, the former abortion workers brought forward evidence of illegal late-term abortions in the form of photos taken on their cell phones at the Karpen’s clinic on Schumacher Lane in Houston.

The photos were scandalous. They depicted two babies aborted well beyond the legal limit of 24 weeks in Texas. Their necks had been cut.

“The photos show babies that are huge, with gashes in their necks, indicating that these babies were likely born alive, then killed, just as Kermit Gosnell did at his ‘House of Horrors’ clinic in Philadelphia,” said Troy Newman, President of Operation Rescue. “In fact, there are numerous similarities between Karpen and the Gosnell case, including the disregarding of complaints by the authorities that allowed both men to continue their illegal operations.”

The video interview of the three informants verified the worst.

“When he did an abortion, especially an over 20 week abortion, most of the time the fetus would come completely out before he cut the spinal cord or he introduced one of the instruments into the soft spot of the fetus, in order to kill the fetus,” said Deborah Edge, who worked as a surgical assistant for Karpen for about 15 years until leaving in March, 2011.

“I thought, well, it’s an abortion you know, that’s what he does, but I wasn’t aware that it was illegal…Most of the time we would see him where the fetus would come completely out and of course, the fetus would still be alive,” Edge continued.

How often did this happen?

“I think every morning I saw several, on several occasions,” she said. “If we had 20-something patients, of course ten, or twelve, or fifteen patients would be large procedures, and out of those large procedures, I’m pretty sure that I was seeing at least three or four fetuses that were completely delivered in some way or another,” said Edge, acknowledging that these babies would be alive.

She described how some babies would emerge too soon and would be alive, moving, and breathing. She also told of how Karpen would sometimes deliver the babies feet first with the toes wiggling until he stabbed them with a surgical implement. At the moment the toes would suddenly splay out before going limp. Sometimes he would kill the babies by “twisting the head off the neck,” according to Edge.

During the interview the former abortion clinic employee says: “the fetus would come completely out and of course, the fetus would still be alive” and the abortion clinic employee added “I’m talking about the whole floor dirty. I’m talking about me drenched in blood.”

One abortion clinic employee is quoted as saying, “I thought, well, it’s an abortion you know, that’s what he does, but I wasn’t aware that it was illegal. Most of the time we would see him where the fetus would come completely out and of course, the fetus would still be alive.”

“He does a lot of huge abortions. A lot of the times, we would bring the big fetus that were over age, we would re-open the bag and just look at it and be like, ‘Oh my gosh, it’s so big,” the abortion clinic staffer adds. “Sometimes he couldn’t get the fetus out. He would yank pieces – piece by piece – when they were oversize. And I’m talking about the whole floor dirty. I’m talking about me drenched in blood.”