Right To Life

FDA Approving Mail-Order Abortions

submitted by Anna-Marie Visser, Director of Communication/Education, Right to Life of Michigan

On December 16, 2021, the FDA permanently approved the prescribing of RU-486, the abortion pill, over telemedicine appointments. In February of 2021, the FDA temporarily approved the use of the abortion pill through telemedicine due to the COVID pandemic shutdowns. This approval eliminates the REMS requirement that in-person examinations and ultrasounds must be conducted before prescribing the pill to women.

The abortion pill, also known a medical abortion, has been a danger to women since the moment it was created. In-person examinations and ultrasound are conducted to rule out an ectopic pregnancy or rh negative.  It is important that the pregnancy be dated properly to make sure that it is 10 weeks or earlier. Once the woman has taken mifepristone in office and then misoprostol at her home, a follow-up appointment is necessary to make sure that the abortion was complete. Within 24-hours, the woman experiences heavy bleeding, stomach cramping, and emotional trauma from having an abortion.

Complications Reported

The U.S. does not require states to report their yearly abortion statistics to the CDC. California, New Hampshire, and Maryland refuse to report any data on abortion to the CDC and the rest of the states that do report, are not held to accuracy when publishing their numbers. According to the 2019 CDC report, 24 deaths resulted from medical abortions with 4,000 complications. Complications typically include incomplete abortions, infection from ectopic pregnancy, and excessive bleeding.

A 2009 study from “Obstetrics and Gynecology” found that the complication rate for medical abortions was 20% while complications for surgical abortions was 5.6%. Medical abortions that are incomplete are then followed up with a surgical abortion.


The CDC 2019 reported that 629,898 abortions took place in the U.S. Within Michigan, 29,669 abortions took place in 2020 and of those, 15,333 were completed by the abortion pill which is only going to increase as it becomes more accessible and less restricted.

Future Problems

Telemedicine appointments were created for patients that lived in rural areas or who didn’t feel comfortable being in-person during COVID.  The woman is advised to go to the emergency room to treat the complications. This is an incentive for abortion facilities because they will not have to pay for the prep or clean-up of the abortion.

The bottom line is that the abortion pill, a deadly and dangerous drug, will be shipped all throughout the country through the mailing system.

Ballot Proposal Filed to Repeal Michigan’s 1931 Abortion Ban

submitted by Right to Life of Michigan

Lansing, MI — Ballot proposal paperwork has been filed to the Board of State Cansavers by pro-abortion groups including Reproductive Freedom for All, American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan, and Michigan Voices.

The proposal is the first step in efforts to reverse the Michigan 1846 abortion ban and create a state constitutional right for abortion.

The following statement is attributed to Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing:

It is disappointing, but not unexpected, that a ballot proposal has been filed in hopes of overturning a long-standing law that protects innocent babies from being killed. While the exact language has not been released, we know that Michiganders want to live in a life-affirming state.

The humanity of unborn children cannot be denied, as technology and science have proven, without a doubt, that they are human and deserve legal protection. Beginning at fertilization, the unborn child develops rapidly from a single cell to a fully formed infant by 15-weeks. An unborn child’s development is a gapless process just as an infant or adult’s development is a continuous and never-ending process.

We cannot allow the vulnerable to be killed in the name of convenience.

Right to Life of Michigan has been fighting for the past 50 years to protect the right to life and we will continue to do so until the humanity of the unborn is upheld and respected.

Background information:
1931 Abortion Ban Law
1972 Abortion Ballot Initiative Defeated

The War on Children

submitted by Anna-Marie Visser, Director of Communication/Education, Right to Life of Michigan

On December 1, the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in the case Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. At stake are Mississippi’s ban on abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy, and perhaps Roe v. Wade and the non-existing right to abortion through all nine months of pregnancy. The arguments on December 1 mostly revolved around how and when the Supreme Court can overturn prior decisions.

On the prolife side, Mississippi had an easy argument: abortion was never added to the Constitution. Justice Clarence Thomas repeatedly asked the lawyers representing the abortion facility and President Biden about what the right to abortion is, and neither could articulate exactly what it is.

The pro-abortion lawyers did articulate one very clear point: they argued Roe v. Wade must not be overturned because women rely on abortion. In their minds, there is a war between women and children, and only one can win.

Do you remember the 2012 election? One of the main attacks against Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign was that he was conducting a “war on women,” because he expressed prolife beliefs.

Is it true? Are women and their children in a permanent war against each other—a struggle to the death? If so, then isn’t all of society? Are we at war with anyone with a claim on our time? Teachers at war with students? Middle-aged children at war with elderly parents? Neighbor against neighbor; the rich against the poor: a war of all against all?

One particular exchange during oral arguments highlighted the absurdity of that argument. Justice Amy Coney Barrett was asking the pro-abortion lawyers about safe delivery laws and adoption, and if they meant women already had a legal means to avoid parenthood in any situation. Justice Barrett is proof positive that children are not fatal to career success. Justice Barrett is the mother of seven children, including one with Down syndrome and two adopted children.

It’s unclear what will happen. The consensus of court watchers is that arguments went very poorly for the abortion facility, but the Supreme Court is unpredictable. In 1992, the Supreme Court was going to overturn Roe v. Wade, until a justice bowed to pressure to change his mind, allowing another 33 million abortions to take place since then.

What is clear is that America faces two paths: one of peace and one of permanent war—with tens of millions of casualties to come.

Supreme Court Must Overturn Roe v. Wade

submitted by Right to Life of Michigan

Grand Rapids, MI — On December 1st, the U.S. Supreme Court began hearing oral arguments in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.

The case involves Mississippi’s ban on abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy. In accepting the case, the Supreme Court announced they will revisit the key holding of Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, which is that no state may ban abortion before the shifting point of when a child can survive outside the womb.

The following statement is from Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing:

The Supreme Court must do the right thing and overturn Roe v. Wade. There is nothing in the U.S. Constitution that mentions abortion. There is no good legal reason Mississippi can’t ban the brutal late-term abortions of children who have beating hearts and the capacity to feel pain. Thanks to advances like 3-D ultrasounds, today nobody can deny the identity of an unborn child in the womb: she is a human being, just like each of us. Roe v. Wade is one of the most unjust decisions in our nation’s history. Not only did it allow violence by taking away the human rights of 61 million unborn children and counting, but also wounded our democratic process and created decades of legal confusion and controversies. In America, voters vote and legislators legislate, but Roe v. Wade allows judges to disenfranchise voters and their elected officials, not because the U.S. Constitution says so, but because seven men in 1973 personally wanted unlimited abortions through all nine months of pregnancy. It is time for Roe to go. We hope the Supreme Court will take to heart the amicus brief we joined in this case.

In Michigan, overturning Roe v. Wade means our state’s law protecting the life of all unborn children will have an opportunity to be restored to full effect. The people of Michigan voted overwhelmingly to keep our law, just weeks before Roe v. Wade. Roe wrongly overturned that election. We look forward to the day that every unborn child in Michigan and America will once again have their equal right to life respected and protected.

Eliminating the Protect Life Rule

submitted by Right to Life of Michigan

Shortly after being elected, President Biden announced his administration would begin the process of eliminating President Trump’s Protect Life Rule. On Monday, October 5th, President Biden’s Department of Health and Human Services officially rescinded it, meaning it will no longer be effective on November 8.

The Protect Life Rule stopped Planned Parenthood from violating federal law and taking Title X money to spend on abortion.

The Title X family planning program was created by President Nixon in 1970. From the beginning, the law creating the program specifically forbade funding from being used to provide or promote abortions. Yet for decades, Planned Parenthood took the lion’s share of the program’s funding. The money was used to pay for staff who helped perform abortions and facilities where abortions occurred.

President Reagan tried to stop this, but the Abortion Industry successfully delayed his effort in court until the Clinton administration. President Trump’s administration put together a comprehensive rule change to ensure the law was being followed: the Protect Life Rule.

Now, Planned Parenthood is set to rake in an estimated $60 million more tax dollars a year with President Biden’s formal decision Monday.

In the last decade—according to their own annual reports—Planned Parenthood posted a profit of more than $1 billion dollars. They received about $5 billion of your tax dollars from other sources than the federal Title X program, which was still fully funded while the Protect Life Rule was in effect. They don’t “need” more of your money.

After the Protect Life Rule was enacted, Planned Parenthood’s tax revenue actually increased, as pro-abortion states shoveled more cash into their bank accounts, and Planned Parenthood illegally stole pandemic relief funding—which President Biden refuses to prosecute. Despite this, Planned Parenthood claimed women were going without help unless you sent them—and only them—more of your money. They even increased their service fees, despite posting a profit of $69.7 million in 2019-2020, which was greater than what they lost from the Protect Life Rule.

Planned Parenthood’s corporate greed is insatiable, along with their desire to force you to be complicit in abortion.

The President’s actions since day one of his administration have shown he will never deviate from the Abortion Industry’s marching orders. Some people justified voting for Biden because he claimed he was personally prolife but unfortunately, last month he revoked those claims, reminding people that elections have consequences.

Michigan Legislature Passes Prolife Budget

Lansing, MI — On September 22, the Michigan Legislature passed the 2022 state budget, which includes several new prolife provisions.

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, “Our prolife leadership in the Legislature understands the need to invest in pregnancy help as an alternative to abortion. We are pleased to see the follow-through from the budget chairs, Rep. Tom Albert and Sen. Jim Stamas, as well as subcommittee chairs Rep. Mary Whiteford, Rep. Mark Huizenga, Sen. Kim LaSata, and Sen. Rick Outman. We hope Governor Whitmer follows through on her end of the budget negotiations and signs all of these provisions into law.”

The budget allocates $10 million for promoting adoption as an alternative to abortion. $1.5 million would be available as grants to pregnancy resource centers that provide alternatives to abortions, and $700,000 to restore the Real Alternatives pregnancy help program, which Governor Whitmer line-item vetoed in the 2020 budget.

Listing said, “There are only a few hundred infant adoptions in Michigan every year and long waiting times for parents interested in adoption, yet sadly there were 29,669 reported abortions in Michigan in 2020. Abortion robs children from the opportunities to live their lives and opportunities for parents to complete their families. Prolife organizations operate more than 150 locations in Michigan to provide pregnancy and adoption help to make those opportunities a reality, and they deserve this support.”

$500,000 in the budget would finally fund the Pregnant and Parenting Student Services Act, which would help connect pregnant students on college campuses with resources so they can continue their education.

Listing said, “When she was a state representative, Gretchen Whitmer supported our Pregnant and Parenting Student Services Act. Though she vetoed funding for this needed program in 2020, we hope this time she remembers her past support.”

Previously existing language is included in this budget preventing state family planning funding from going to abortion providers and prioritizing federal family planning funding to be given to non-abortion providers.

Listing said, “Planned Parenthood is a billion-dollar megacorporation. They illegally received pandemic relief funding. There’s no reason Michigan county health departments should be deprived of funding so Planned Parenthood can add to their tens of millions in annual profits.”

The budget includes $100,000 for educational materials to the public and to higher education institutions about the constitutional limitations of human embryonic stem cell research. It includes a previously existing requirement of reporting from any universities that engage in the research.

Listing said, “Governor Gretchen Whitmer led the 2008 campaign to allow research that kills human embryos in Michigan. Her campaign promised cures to sick Michiganders and a biotechnology revolution. We’ve received no cures and no real economic benefits, just unanswered questions that deserve answers.”

The budget also requires that colleges and universities that mandate vaccines to allow medical, religious, and philosophical exemptions, and prohibits vaccine passports. Many prolife people have ethical objections to one or several of the coronavirus vaccines that use tissue taken from aborted babies in the development or production process.

A Texas-Sized Abortion Controversy

editorial submitted by Right to Life of Michigan

Seemingly everyone is talking about Texas’ new abortion law. How did Texas prolifers achieve this victory?

Texas’ law bans abortions if the abortionist can detect the child’s heartbeat. Several states have passed similar bills, and they have all been blocked by federal courts. So, Texas decided to include a wrinkle in their law: the state is forbidden from enforcing the law. Instead, the law is to be enforced by citizens suing abortionists in court.

That legal tactic is not new. Private civil actions are used in many circumstances to enforce civil rights laws, environmental regulations, workplace discrimination, etc. Writing in the Washington Post, University of Denver professor Joshua C. Wilson said, “Texas’s abortion law is an example of conservatives learning from progressives.”

One trick abortion supporters have used to get federal courts to toss out other prolife laws is cheating the legal system’s rules of standing: people suing to block a law are generally required to prove that the law would harm them. However, for decades, courts have let abortion businesses cheat and given them “third party standing” to sue on behalf of women, rather than suing based on their real beef: prolife laws hurt their revenue streams.

Texas’ new law has turned this standing issue on its head. Their law gives citizens third-party standing to sue on behalf of unborn children.

Of course, the Abortion Industry sued to block Texas’ law. To the surprise of many, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to block the law by a vote of 5 to 4. The majority rightly pointed out nobody has sued an abortionist yet, so there is no case to hear yet. Sadly, the three pro-abortion Supreme Court justices don’t care about rules, so they voted to block the law, and even more sadly, Chief Justice John Roberts joined them. 

It remains to be seen what will happen with Texas’ clever new law. The law still has to survive a series of potential federal and state court challenges. The Supreme Court will likely decide the fate of Roe v. Wade in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization long before they hear a case involving Texas’ law. If they overturn Roe v. Wade, Michigan’s existing abortion ban protecting every unborn child can go back into full effect.

However, in the meantime, many babies are being saved from death in the Lone Star State, and that’s a great thing. Elections have consequences!

Save the Hyde Amendment: Contact Congress Today

submitted by Anna-Marie Visser, Director of Communication/Education, RTL.org

The Hyde Amendment has been a part of the federal budget since 1976 and has helped save the lives of millions while protecting the conscience rights of taxpayers. The amendment ensures that Americans are not being forced to pay for other people’s abortions with their own tax dollars. Since this amendment was passed, 2,409,311 lives have been saved nationwide. Michigan created their own ban on tax funded abortions and within the first year, abortions decreased 22%.

With overwhelming bipartisan support, the Hyde Amendment has protected American taxpayers for 45 years. The amendment has been successful through the support of past presidents such as Obama and Clinton. Within this last month of July, President Biden and pro-abortion leaders have sought to threaten the long-standing amendment by failing to include it in the federal budget proposals.

On July 29, U.S. House of Representatives voted 219-208 in a preliminary vote to exclude the Hyde Amendment from the federal budget. This means that pro-abortion leaders and officials are one step closer to forcing taxpayers—you—to pay for other people’s abortions. The vote included multiple prolife appropriation amendments like the Weldon Amendment, the Smith Amendment, and Dornan Amendment.

The Weldon Amendment protects health care providers who don’t want to be involved with or aid in abortions from being discriminated against by agencies that receive federal funding.

The Smith Amendment is another important amendment to take note of being excluded from the budget. This amendment ensures that no funding from the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program is used towards abortions.

The Dornan Amendment prohibits any appropriated funds from the District of Colombia from being used towards abortions. This amendment was also removed from the budget.

Republicans in the U.S. House tried to fight the removal of these essential prolife amendments but failed in another vote of 208-217. Speaker Nancy Pelosi also blocked them from making the Hyde Amendment federal law.

House Representatives are currently on summer recess after this disappointing session, and the U.S. Senate will soon vote on the appropriation packages. There are indications that the Senate may be more willing to listen to the voice of their constituents. A majority of senators have promised to support the Hyde Amendment.

Now more than ever, it is crucial that citizens contact Congress as soon as possible to ensure that they know that a supermajority of people don’t want to pay for other people’s abortions.

Right to Life Michigan asks Supreme Court to Overturn Roe v. Wade

Lansing, MI — On July 29, Right to Life of Michigan filed an amicus curiae brief asking the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade. The Supreme Court will likely hear oral arguments in the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization case in the fall.

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, “In 1972, Michigan voters determined our state’s law protecting unborn children should stand. Just weeks later, their vote was overturned by the Supreme Court in Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton. Democracy is threatened every time unelected judges overstep their bounds and overturn legitimate election results.”

Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization involves a Mississippi law banning abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy—with several exceptions.

The brief argues that the U.S. Supreme Court overstepped its authority in Roe v. Wade: “This Court in Roe incorrectly concluded that the Fourteenth Amendment includes a liberty interest in the right to abort a pre-born child. Not a single word uttered or written in the promulgation of the Fourteenth Amendment even remotely suggests that the Amendment includes a right to abortion.”

Listing said, “Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton have allowed unlimited abortion in America since 1973. Since then, more than 60 million unborn children have had their lives taken from them. American voters don’t support the result of Roe v. Wade. Polling routinely shows that less than a quarter of Americans support abortion-on-demand through all nine months of pregnancy. The radical view that an unborn child has zero human worth shouldn’t prevail over the U.S. Constitution, laws, a large majority of voters, and democracy itself. It’s time for Roe to go.”

The brief was submitted on behalf of Right to Life of Michigan, as well as the National Catholic Bioethics Center and two prolife obstetrician-gynecologists, Drs. Gianina Cazan-London and Melissa Halvorson. The brief was prepared by lead counsel Professor William Wagner and the Great Lakes Justice Center.

Surrogacy Contracts Victimize Women and Children

submitted by Chris Gast, Director of Communication/Education, Right to Life of Michigan

Michigan’s surrogacy laws have become a subject of a few media stories in recent months. On the surface, helping couples who are having trouble conceiving by allowing surrogacy may sound good, but in practice surrogacy creates entirely new groups of victims.

In 1988, Michigan banned surrogacy contracts to get ahead of feared abuses down the road. Despite accusations that our state’s law is “archaic” or “outdated,” those fears proved accurate. As other states and countries experience these abuses, our law appears to actually be way ahead of its time.

Surrogacy involves introducing a third party into the process of childbirth. Either the parents use in vitro fertilization (IVF) to create a child, and then a different woman gestates the child—the most frequent method—or the surrogate is inseminated or donates her own eggs to create the child through IVF.

To be clear, Michigan law doesn’t ban “altruistic” voluntary surrogacy, but specifically bans the practice of creating a binding surrogacy contract. These contracts create two major problems.

First, they turn the child into a marketable commodity. Human beings aren’t things to be bought or sold. Besides the many problems with IVF involving eugenics, potential health effects on the child, and “leftover” children, these contracts can come with “abortion clauses.” If the “product” doesn’t meet quality assurance standards for health or sex, the “product” is killed according to the contract. Even abortion supporters should see the obvious problem with making abortion a tool to enforce obedience to a business contract.

Michigan’s law has saved lives. Disabled baby Seraphina Harrell’s life was spared in 2012 when her surrogate mother moved here to avoid being pressured into abortion. If our law didn’t exist, Seraphina might have never lived, and her mother scarred for life.

Second, surrogacy contracts reduce motherhood to a business relationship—one that often preys upon poor women. Often, a woman’s decision to enter into a surrogacy contract is based on financial hardship. While the agreement may relieve temporary financial stress, a breach in contract could result in devastating legal and financial consequences for the surrogate.

In addition, this commercialization of creating a child seldom considers the short-term and long-term impact on the surrogate mother, who is legally forced to give up the child she spent 9 months caring for.

There are many other ways to help infertile couples that don’t treat women and children as objects to buy and sell.

Women’s Right to Know Act Introduced in Michigan

Lansing, MI — The Women’s Right to Know Act was introduced in the Michigan House on June 22nd.

Sponsored by Rep. Sue Allor, HB 5086 addresses three areas of informed consent for women seeking abortions: abortion pill reversal, heartbeat/miscarriage awareness, and prenatal diagnosis of a disability.

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, “Abortion businesses try hard to keep women in the dark. They don’t want women to understand the reality of abortion and its effects on them and their children. This legislation would address several areas where women are not being given proper informed consent before abortions.”

The abortion pill reversal provision requires the abortionist to let women taking the abortion pill know there is a treatment which may reverse the effects of the first pill of the two-drug regimen. Even though that treatment, progesterone, is commonly prescribed to prevent miscarriages, abortion supporters have claimed the treatment is “unproven,” “dangerous,” and wrongly suggest the child might be disabled if they survive the abortion pill’s effects.

Listing said, “These concerns are based on talking points, not reality and research. Practicing doctors have studied and used this common treatment to increase the chances of saving the child’s life. What bothers abortion businesses the most is that a woman might change her mind and choose life.”

The heartbeat/miscarriage awareness provision requires the abortionist to check for a fetal heartbeat and allow the woman the opportunity to hear or see the heartbeat. If no heartbeat is detected, the abortionist must give the woman the opportunity to return later if the gestational age is too young to detect a heartbeat, tell her of the likelihood of a miscarriage based on the absence of a fetal heartbeat, or offer to use a different technology to detect the heartbeat. The abortionist must also let her know that treatment for a missed miscarriage is not considered an abortion for insurance purposes.

Listing said, “From what we know of miscarriage rates, abortion businesses over the years have undoubtedly sold many abortions to women who no longer had viable pregnancies. How many women have anguished over their abortion decision even though their child’s life ended before they walked through the abortion facility’s doors? How many abortionists have profited from this unnecessary medical intervention?”

The prenatal disability provision requires the doctor making a diagnosis of a serious prenatal condition to give the woman a referral for more information. The state will be required to create a website with medically accurate information about prenatal conditions, support group information, and perinatal hospice programs.

Listing said, “Sadly, so many women who received a troubling prenatal diagnosis had it immediately followed with suggestions or even pressure to have an abortion. Women have a right to medically-accurate information about their developing child, access to support groups, and a medical profession which walks alongside her instead of pushing for eugenic abortions.”

The Supreme Court Reexamines Roe

by Chris Gast, Right to Life of Michigan, Director of Communication/Education

On May 17, the U.S. Supreme Court took up the case Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.

The case involves Mississippi’s ban on abortion past 15 weeks of pregnancy. The central question of the case is whether a state can ban abortions before the point of viability, which is the ever-shifting point at which a child can survive outside the womb.

Some fear the Supreme Court may uphold Roe v. Wade; a sacrifice to satisfy President Biden and his threats to pack the Supreme Court with political activists. Others say it is likely they will uphold Mississippi’s law, but leave Roe hanging by a thread. The right thing to do—legally and morally—is overturning Roe, and it’s what they should do.

In 1973, the Supreme Court ripped away the issue of abortion from voters, and since then the lives of 60 million unborn children have been taken, their little bodies ripped out of their mother’s wombs in cruel fashion.

Roe v. Wade created a right to abortion out of thin air. The Supreme Court invented a trimester framework in their decision, where states could only regulate abortion in the 2nd trimester, and states could ban abortions in the 3rd trimester—if the bans contained a health exception.

The definition of a health exception was settled the same day as Roe v. Wade in Doe v. Bolton. Health was defined to include “all factors … relevant to the well-being of the patient.” Thus, states could in theory ban abortions in the third trimester, but only if they allowed every reason to count as an exception.

In 1992, the Supreme Court got rid of the trimester framework in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, instead applying an “undue burden” test: any abortion law could not create an “undue burden” on a woman seeking an abortion. The point at which states could ban abortions—while keeping an infinite health exception—was arbitrarily moved to viability.

The Constitution doesn’t mention viability, or trimesters, or anything about abortion. When judges cook up their own laws, they delegitimatize their courts and usurp our democratic process.

Michigan voters had their say in 1972, just weeks before Roe v. Wade. A supermajority of voters decided to keep our state’s abortion ban. Roe v. Wade overturned our election and stole the human rights from an entire class of human beings.

It’s well past time for this judicial tyranny to end.

Abortion Meets a Fork in the Road

submitted by Chris Gast, Director of Communication/Education, Right to Life of Michigan

As America’s major political parties have polarized, the issue of abortion has become more polarized. It shouldn’t surprise, because of the broader worldview assumptions underlying each position—though there are plenty of dissenters still to be found on both sides.

This polarization exists alongside the current reality that most Americans are in the “mushy middle” when it comes their abortion views. About a quarter of us believe in absolute unlimited abortion, a quarter believes in the absolute right to life of every child, and those in between are uncomfortable with abortion to varying degrees; they can’t bring themselves to totally end it or embrace it.

Pro-abortion states have recently moved aggressively to shore up their abortion laws in case Roe v. Wade is overturned—and states and voters once again can decide on abortion. They not only endorse abortion, but celebrate it. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo lit up the One World Trade Center pink to celebrate passage of their unlimited abortion bill in 2018. The symbolism is undeniable: a beacon built on the resting place of nearly 3,000 lives lost on one day in 2001 transformed into celebrating the ongoing deaths of nearly 3,000 lives every day in America’s abortion facilities.

America experiences abortion whiplash with every new federal administration. President Biden’s Food & Drug Administration is using the pandemic as an excuse to remove safety regulations on the abortion pill, allowing death to be distributed through the mail. Even though Britain’s recent experience with abortion-by-mail showed dire consequences for women’s health, nothing must stop abortions. Contrast that with President Trump’s policies, including nominating rule of law judges.

Prolife states continue to legislate against abortion at a fast pace. President Trump’s judicial nominees on the 6th U.S. Circuit just sealed a victory for Ohio, allowing them to ban abortion targeted at children with Down syndrome. Other states—including Michigan—are working on expanded versions that ban abortions targeted by race, sex, or any disability.

What will the Supreme Court do? Roe v. Wade means there is no escape valve for this pressure; one side cheated to allow 25% of the country to manufacture absolute legal dominance over the abortion issue. Sadly, the issue is seldom framed this way, because media and academia tend to side with unlimited abortion.

How long can Roe v. Wade continue to survive—after half a century of failing to manufacture the expected pro-abortion consensus?

Targeted Abortions Ban Introduced in Michigan House

Lansing, MI — A ban on targeted abortions was introduced on Thursday, April 29, 2021, in the Michigan House.

House Bills 4737 & 4738 would ban abortions targeted at babies not just diagnosed with Down syndrome, but any disability, as well as babies targeted for reasons of sex or racial discrimination.

The bills, sponsored by Rep. Julie Calley and Rep. Andrew Fink, would make it a felony punishable by up to two years in prison for the person who knowingly performs a targeted abortion. The bills define disability as any physical or mental disability, and specifically lists several common disabilities for inclusion.

On April 12, the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals allowed Ohio’s ban on targeted abortions of children with Down syndrome to be enforced while court challenges continue. Michigan is also under the jurisdiction of the Sixth Circuit.

The following statement is from Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing:

“With the legal situation in the Sixth Circuit, this is our highest priority, since a targeted abortion ban would be enforceable now. Because the neighboring Fifth Circuit struck down a similar Indiana law, this is an opportunity for the U.S. Supreme Court to weigh in.

Abortion is used as a tool of discrimination on a horrifying scale. We have heard of situations where parents of women in interracial relationships have attempted to convince or coerce their daughters into getting race-selection abortions. More than 160 million women around the globe are missing because of sex-selection abortions. Abortion is wrong, period, but even people who consider themselves pro-choice should have a problem with taking the life of a child because they are a girl or aren’t a desired race.

Some countries boast of all but eliminating certain disabilities by targeting disabled children in the womb. Most people would be horrified of taking the life of a disabled child a day after birth, and they should be equally horrified by the idea of taking that child’s life a day before birth.

Gallup asked a polling question on this in 2018. Only 29% of Americans thought it should be legal to take the life of a child with Down syndrome in the third trimester, and only a minority, 49%, thought it should be legal in the first trimester. Majorities thought abortion should be illegal in the third trimester for mental disabilities or conditions that threaten the life of the child. It’s clear Roe v. Wade and the current state of abortion law is nowhere close to lining up with the views of the American public.

With continuing advances in care for the disabled and new programs like perinatal hospice, there are better options for society to invest in than causing the death of these little ones. A modern society that prides itself on creating equity can’t be a society that allows violently taking the life of a child deemed unworthy of human care because of a physical or mental characteristic.”

Background information:
HB 4737
HB 4738
Targeted abortion facts
6th Circuit Ohio ruling
2018 Gallup Poll

MDHHS Begins Implementing Coronavirus Vaccine Fetal Tissue Informed Consent

In a surprise victory—a partial victory so far—the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) has begun implementing a coronavirus vaccine informed consent provision. The provision requires that patients be given informed consent if the coronavirus vaccine they will take was developed using cell lines taken from aborted babies.

The provision is in a pandemic supplemental spending bill signed into law by Governor Gretchen Whitmer on March 9. That Governor Whitmer signed it with no fanfare or opposition is a surprise; she didn’t release a statement claiming the provision was unenforceable. This success shows why it’s important for prolife legislators to keep working in even hostile legislative environments.

The MDHHS frequently asked questions document regarding COVID-19 vaccines now has a section explaining the use of fetal cell lines. It’s unclear what else the MDHHS is doing yet to enforce the provision, or if they will do anything else.

The Johnson & Johnson/Janssen coronavirus vaccine utilizes a cell line created from the retina of a healthy baby aborted at 18 weeks in 1985. The vaccine requires use of the cell line to produce doses, and thus this new provision requires people be informed.

Moderna and Pfizer do not use cell lines taken from aborted babies to produce their vaccines’ doses. However, they did use cells lines taken from aborted babies to test their vaccines in the research stage.

In news coverage by the Detroit Free Press, one State Senator described this provision as “putting politics into the process to scare people.”

It’s morally repugnant to hide information from people who would otherwise ethically object to taking the vaccine if they knew these facts. It’s the health officials who are unwisely playing politics by hiding information from people to trick them—and it’s only hurting their efforts in the long run because people eventually will find out and wonder why such information was hidden.

If you are receiving the Johnson & Johnson/Janssen vaccine and you were not given proper informed consent involving the use of fetal tissue in vaccine development—either verbally or in written documentation—please e-mail us at info@rtl.org and let us know! Please also contact the MDHHS’s Division of Immunization at (517) 335-8159.

For more information about this topic and a list of all coronavirus vaccines that used fetal cell lines in either research or production, please visit the Right to Life of Michigan website: RTL.org/covid-19-vaccine-abortion/.

MDHHS Begins Implementing Coronavirus Vaccine Fetal Tissue Informed Consent

Submitted by Right to Life of Michigan

March 25, 2021, Lansing, MI — The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has begun implementing a provision requiring informed consent for coronavirus vaccines developed using cell lines taken from aborted babies.

The provision is in a pandemic relief supplemental bill signed into law by Governor Gretchen Whitmer on March 9, HB 4047.

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, “We are pleasantly surprised Governor Whitmer didn’t issue a non-enforceability statement. Now we hope the provision will be properly enforced so that people are given real informed consent. Research involving aborted babies is an ongoing ethical concern, so people have a right to know if a medicine they are taking involved purposefully taking human life.”

The MDHHS frequently asked questions document regarding COVID-19 vaccines now has a section explaining the use of fetal cell lines. It’s unclear what else the MDHHS is doing yet to enforce the provision, and if the Emergency Use Authorization Fact Sheet for Recipients will be updated.

The language in the bill states vaccine recipients “shall be provided with information or informed if and in what manner the development of the vaccine utilized aborted fetal tissue or human embryonic stem cell derivation lines.”

The Johnson & Johnson/Janssen coronavirus vaccine utilizes cell lines taken from an aborted baby in production. Moderna and Pfizer do not use cell lines taken from aborted babies to produce doses, but used cells lines to test their vaccines. Some other vaccines being researched utilize these cell lines, and others do not.

Right to Life of Michigan is asking people receiving the Johnson & Johnson/Janssen vaccine to inform us if they were not given proper informed consent involving the use fetal tissue in vaccine development—either verbally or in written documentation—as well as contact the MDHHS’s Division of Immunization at (517) 335-8159.

The two cell lines from aborted babies being used in coronavirus vaccine research are HEK-293, taken from the kidney of a healthy baby aborted sometime around 1972, and PER.C6, taken from the retina of a healthy baby aborted at 18 weeks in 1985.

Prolife people disagree about the ethics of using vaccines developed from these cell lines. Some point to these cell lines being decades old, and others point out that using them may encourage additional abortions to develop new cell lines. Right to Life of Michigan believes everyone has a right to know to make their own ethical determinations.

COVID Relief for Abortion?

submitted by Chris Gast, Director of Communication/Education | RTL.org

On March 10, Congress approved a $1.9 trillion pandemic relief bill. One thing conspicuously missing from the bill is the Hyde Amendment.

The Hyde Amendment prevents taxpayer dollars from directly funding abortions. It’s not a law, but a clause added to the annual budget and other spending bills. Even though a majority of U.S. Senators voted to add it, arcane budget rules meant the vote failed, and the handful of Democrats who supported the Hyde Amendment weren’t willing to vote against the final bill.

It should surprise nobody that the relief bill is written in such a way that Planned Parenthood can easily steal your money.

If you think “steal” is a strong word, remember that even though previous COVID-19 relief exempted Planned Parenthood from receiving money, some of their affiliates still knowingly applied and received your tax dollars. With President Biden running the show, instead of legal accountability, Planned Parenthood is lavishly rewarded for breaking the law.

When’s the last time you were rewarded by the government for breaking the law?

Planned Parenthood isn’t close to being in danger of closing like other life-sustaining businesses. In the last five years they have made a combined profit of more than $600 MILLION DOLLARS. They made their most recent $69.7 million annual profit in spite of President Trump’s Protect Life Rule—which President Biden will soon delete. Every year their services decline, their abortions increase, and you pay more of their bills—indirect funding of abortion.

This relief bill sets a dangerous precedent and Planned Parenthood is already demanding the Hyde Amendment never appear again in any budget. They will never have enough of your money. Will the three Democrats who voted for the Hyde Amendment in the relief bill have the courage to “shutdown” the government in the next budget fight if the Hyde Amendment is missing?

Planned Parenthood never had to close during the pandemic like local businesses or even real medical clinics. Governor Whitmer called their abortion work “life-sustaining.” Your favorite restaurant can’t call up Warren Buffet and ask for a few million dollars like Planned Parenthood does. The Abortion Industry doesn’t need pandemic relief, and pandemic relief should be about preserving life, not taking it.

If America suffered the Apocalypse, it seems the only thing pro-abortion legislators would have the government keep running is the Abortion Industry—to take care of any pesky survivors in the womb.

Right to Life of Michigan Calls on Governor Whitmer to Close Abortion Facilities

March 25, 2020, Lansing, Mich. — In light of her order requiring all outpatient facilities to postpone non-essential procedures, Right to Life of Michigan is calling on Governor Gretchen Whitmer to clarify that elective abortions are a non-essential procedure.

Abortion procedures require the use of personal protective equipment like other now-forbidden medical procedures. Medical personnel handling coronavirus patients will not be able to use those scarce resources.

Botched abortions can require follow-up surgical procedures or emergency room visits. Use of the abortion pill often results in complications such as excessive bleeding requiring visits to a doctor’s office. Patients and staff inside abortion facilities increases the likelihood of coronavirus spreading from close contact.

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, “Today, abortion facilities are using up surgical masks in order to take the lives of innocent babies. Tomorrow, how many doctors and nurses will go without proper protection while trying to save the lives of coronavirus patients? How many of those medical personnel will contract the virus?”

Listing said, “We’re seeing a pattern of pro-abortion elected officials putting ideology first, and people at risk of the coronavirus second. Federal coronavirus relief was held up in part because of demands for small business assistance for Planned Parenthood, which has an annual budget of more than a billion dollars. Right to Life of Michigan is abiding by Governor Whitmer’s order. It’s time for Governor Whitmer to prove she can put public health above her ideology, because Planned Parenthood is incapable of being responsible, even during a global pandemic.”

Governor Whitmer’s order defines an essential procedure as one that is “necessary to address a medical emergency or to preserve the health and safety of a patient.” According to a study from the pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute, 96% of women having abortions cited reasons other than their physical health as their most important reason for seeking an abortion.

Listing said, “The vast majority of abortions are performed for economic or social reasons. Right now, people with legitimate medical needs are suffering in pain. We’re postponing hip replacements or fixing cracked teeth to ensure our front-line doctors and nurses are equipped. These procedures in many cases will be more burdensome and expensive for people in need because they had to wait. Why aren’t we treating them fairly? Why should abortion facilities get to be above the law?”

Those wishing to call Governor Whitmer to urge her to treat abortion facilities like other outpatient surgical facilities can call her Lansing office at (517) 373-3400.


Background Information:
Guttmacher Institute study on abortion reasons

Bill Introduced to Allow Abortion Pill Reversal Information

On January 22, 2020, the 47th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, House Bill 5374 was introduced in the Michigan Legislature. This bill will ensure women who are prescribed the abortion pill are given information about the abortion pill reversal protocol. The bill’s lead sponsor is Representative Beth Griffin.

The abortion pill reversal protocol has been successful in saving the lives of more than 900 unborn children whose mothers regret beginning the abortion pill process. A recent study from the doctors pioneering the process showed it is effective up to 68 percent of the time.

The abortion pill regimen first uses RU-486 (mifepristone) to break down the connection between the baby and mother’s womb. 24 to 48 hours later, a second pill, misoprostol (cytotec), is given to induce contractions and expel the baby. The abortion pill reversal protocol uses the hormone progesterone to reverse the effects of RU-486, which is a progesterone blocker.

Progesterone is a common medical treatment used to prevent miscarriage and is effective in reversing abortion process after the first pill has been taken. Even without the progesterone, there is a small chance the baby would survive if the woman does not take the second pill. Once the second pill has been taken, however, the progesterone treatment would not be effective in reversing the abortion.

An unethical study led by abortion supporters was initiated in 2019 to criticize the abortion pill reversal process. The study was suspended because the participants had negative reactions to the abortion pill itself, but they implied the suspension was because of the effects of the progesterone treatment.

Despite the dangers of the abortion pill, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration expanded the official range for using it up to 10 weeks of gestation. The need for available information about the abortion pill reversal protocol is even greater, because with the continuing increase in women using the abortion pill there will also be an increase in women regretting their decision.

This bill is entirely about informed consent—giving women information the abortion pill reversal protocol. Informed consent should be something that abortion supporters agree with in theory, since they claim to support every woman’s choice. However, in practice, the abortion industry opposes this bill because one of their motives is protecting the money they make from abortions. To protect their own bottom line, they refuse to admit that abortion regret is even a possibility.

Chris Gast
Director of Communication/Education
(616) 532-2300 | RTL.org

Michigan Prolifers Taking 20 Buses to March for Life

Grand Rapids, Mich. — January 22 was the 47th memorial of the U.S. Supreme Court decisions Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, which legalized abortion through all nine months of pregnancy for any reason. Since these decisions in 1973, abortion has taken the lives of more than 59 million children in the United States.

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, “Each year that the violence of abortion remains legal is a new tragedy with hundreds of thousands of lives being lost. We will continue our efforts to ensure that every human life is protected under law.”

As prolife people remember the millions of lives lost through abortion, they continue to hope for a time when this injustice is in the past.

Last year there were several steps made towards the goal of protecting life.

The Trump Administration updated Title X family planning funding rules, redirecting $60 million of taxpayer funding away from Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion provider in the country.

In Michigan, 379,419 signatures were submitted to initiate legislation to end the violent late-term dismemberment abortion procedure. Once the Michigan Bureau of Elections has reviewed the signatures, the legislation can be passed through the Michigan Legislature and become law without the need for a governor’s signature.

The upcoming year holds many reasons for hope as well. In March 2020, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear the case June Medical Services LLC v. Gee, a case involving a Louisiana law requiring abortionists to obtain admitting privileges at local hospitals. This will be the first case involving a prolife law that the court has heard since Justice Brett Kavanaugh was nominated in October 2018. Right to Life of Michigan has filed an amicus curiae brief asking the court to revisit Roe v. Wade.

Listing said, “After 47 years of legal killing in the U.S., revisiting the court cases that made it legal is long overdue.”

Hundreds of thousands of prolife individuals took part in the annual March for Life on the streets of Washington, D.C. on January 24. Right to Life of Michigan affiliates took 20 buses and more than 1,000 people to attend the March. Many Right to Life of Michigan affiliates have hosted local events to remember the 59 million lives lost and honor Sanctity of Human Life Sunday on January 19.

Bill Introduced to Allow Abortion Pill Reversal Information

January 23, 2020, Lansing, Mich. — A bill to ensure women who are prescribed the abortion pill are given information about the abortion pill reversal protocol was introduced yesterday in the Michigan Legislature. House Bill 5374 was introduced on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade.

House Bill 5374’s lead sponsor is Rep. Beth Griffin (R-Mattawan).

The abortion pill regimen first uses RU-486 (mifepristone) to break down the connection between the baby and mother’s womb. Then 24 to 48 hours later, a different pill, misoprostol (Cytotec), is given to induce contractions and expel the baby. The abortion pill reversal protocol uses the hormone progesterone to reverse the effects of RU-486, which is a progesterone blocker. Progesterone is a common treatment used to prevent miscarriage.

Research shows the progesterone treatment is effective 64 to 68 percent of the time. Without the treatment, the abortion may not be successful in women who only take the RU-486 pill. The treatment is not effective in women who take the second misoprostol pill.

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, “Offering information to women about their options should be something abortion businesses have no issue with, as they claim to support all women’s choices. The abortion pill reversal protocol is another choice for women who experience regret after taking the first abortion pill.”

Michigan abortion data show that pill abortions have risen to 35 percent of all abortions. The percentage of pill abortions will continue to grow following the U.S. Food and Drug Administration expanding the official range for using the abortion pill from 7 weeks gestation to 10 weeks.

Listing said, “With the increasing use of the potentially dangerous abortion pill, there will also be an increase in women who instantly regret their decision. Abortion pill reversal has helped hundreds of women reverse a decision they regret, and welcome their child into life. There’s no good ethical argument for keeping women in the dark about this common treatment as an option.”

The Biggest Abortion Myth

by Catherine Kinsey, Education and Events Coordinator, Right to Life of Michigan

The genesis of every other myth circulated by the abortion industry is the myth that an unborn child isn’t a person. If everyone were willing to admit unborn babies are human persons, the various other arguments surrounding the topic wouldn’t matter. The abortion issue would simply come down to whether you believed it is acceptable to take an innocent human life or not.

This myth was easier to spread before modern technology allowed us to see unborn babies through ultrasound with such clarity and learn how much growth and development happens even in the earliest days. A new, unique person is created at fertilization with unique DNA, separate from her mother and father. Her heart begins beating around 21 days after fertilization; her brain begins forming around 4 weeks. At 12 weeks, all major body parts and organs are present. With modern medical advances, babies can survive outside the womb as early as 19 weeks after fertilization.

If you deny human life begins at fertilization, there must be another point at which it begins. How do you choose that point?

The most extreme abortion supporters would say life begins after birth. However, no physical changes happen to the baby from the few minutes before birth to the minutes after it has passed through the birth canal. It is illogical to claim the physical location of the baby determines whether it is a human person or not.

Some believe the unborn baby is a person once it has the ability to survive outside the womb. But does this mean the humanity of the unborn changes with every medical advancement? It certainly wasn’t always possible for babies at 21 weeks of pregnancy to survive outside the womb—were they formerly sub-human?

We cannot know where medical technology will take us. In the future, babies may someday survive before 20 weeks, or before 15 weeks. It is impossible to rationally choose a certain point of development where the unborn suddenly becomes a human being. Their development is a continual process, with the clear starting point when a new life begins at fertilization.

Unfortunately, even with technology allowing us to see the unborn in the womb, it is all too easy for abortion supporters to convince people to ignore the humanity of the unseen child. The truth of abortion gets covered in euphemisms and inessential arguments to distract from the taking of human life.

Muskegon Pregnancy Services is in Need of a New Ultrasound Machine

Mission Statement
We are committed to providing clinical, life-saving services and empowering life-changing decisions.

Muskegon Pregnancy Services (MPS) is a non-profit, pregnancy service ministry. We have been faithfully impacting the community since 1985 through intervention, prevention, and education extending the gift of HOPE while sharing the love of Christ.

All of our services are FREE to our clients because of the partnerships of individuals, churches, and businesses in our community, as well as a few fundraiser events throughout the year.

MPS is the ONLY free ultrasound scan service in our community and our current ultrasound machine is not functioning for what is required for the best quality service to our clients.

The heartbeat of a baby begins to beat between 18 to 28 days. An ultrasound machine can capture the heartbeat with an ultrasound scan at about 4-6 weeks. Depending on technology, the capability is sooner and sooner. Statistics show women who see their baby on the ultrasound are 80% more likely to carry and men who see their baby are 90% more supportive to the mother to carry to term!

Our services include Health Services and Intervention, as well as Education and Prevention:
• Pregnancy Testing: and complete pregnancy option information.
• Limited Ultrasound Scan: (the majority of women choose life if they see the heartbeat of their baby).
• STD Testing & Treatment: for women and men. (Muskegon ranks 3rd in the state) Allows for prevention education.
• Rise Up: “Earn While You Learn” – program for resources such as crib, car seat, pack-n-play, clothing, & baby items.
• Mentoring Advocates and Classes: to educate and equip mothers & fathers for parenthood.
• Post-Abortion Healing: & Making LIFE-Disciples mentorship.
• Sexual Risk Avoidance (SRA): – “Willing To Wait” curriculum: prevention education for youth groups and schools.


Your help and support can empower STRONG choices for LIFE!


1775 Wells Ave Muskegon, MI 49442 * www.muskegonpregnancyservices.org/donor

CDC 2016 Abortion Report Shows Lives Saved

The Centers for Disease Control has released their latest report on abortion data, covering the year 2016.

States are not required to report abortion data to the CDC, so abortion numbers for some states—including California—are not included in their report. However, with 48 consistent reporting areas, the CDC report is a good indicator of long-term trends of abortion. Importantly, the trends show lives saved!

The overall number of abortions has been steadily declining since the 1980s. The total number reported in 2016 was 623,471 induced abortions in the United States, which was a 2% decrease from the previous year. Abortions have decreased a total of 24% since 2007.

The abortion rate also decreased 2%, to 11.6 abortions per 1,000 women ages 15-44. The teen abortion rate has decreased a total of 56% since 2007, down to 6.2 abortions per 1,000 women ages 15-19.

While more lives being saved and more women choosing life is good news, many abortions continue to occur. Abortion was the second highest cause of death in the United States in 2016 according to CDC statistics. When you add in the states that didn’t report like California, abortion remains the leading cause of death in America.

Most abortions are done in the very early weeks of pregnancy. 65.5% of abortions were performed at or before 8 weeks gestation. 1.2% of abortions were performed during or after 21 weeks. While that seems like a small percentage, 1.2% of 623,471 is more than 7,400, which is a large number of abortions on children who can survive outside the womb or who are close to that point.

Many abortions were also repeat abortions: the 2016 report showed 43.1% of abortions were performed on women who had already had at least one previous abortion.

The trends apparent in the CDC report help us to understand where our efforts to decrease abortion are succeeding the most and where more work is needed. Abortion is trending older as young women have fewer abortions. The abortion industry works to make abortions as easy as possible to retain their declining “customer” base, and many women remain trapped in a cycle of multiple abortions.

The prolife movement has come a long way in shifting the popularity of abortion since the 1980s. There is still much work to be done in creating a culture where unborn children are protected in law and abortion is unthinkable.

Right to Life of Michigan Files Brief Asking for Reversal of Roe v. Wade

Lansing, MI — Right to Life of Michigan filed an amicus curiae brief on January 2 asking the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade. The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments in the June Medical Services LLC v. Gee case on March 4.

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, “Michigan voters overwhelmingly chose to keep our state’s abortion ban in November 1972. Just weeks later, the U.S. Supreme Court blatantly overstepped its bounds by inventing a right to abortion through all nine months of pregnancy in Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton.”

June Medical Services LLC v. Gee involves a Louisiana law requiring abortionists to obtain admitting privileges at local hospitals.

Abortionists often have no relationship with local hospitals and women experiencing life-threatening complications from botched abortions have been dumped at emergency rooms or forced to seek care themselves because of a lack of follow-up care. Risks to the woman’s life and health are increased if the medical staff caring for a woman after a botched abortion cannot obtain even basic details from the abortionist.

The brief argues that the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision went beyond the scope of their power, violated the process for amending the U.S. Constitution, and has undermined the legitimacy of our nation’s judicial system. The Supreme Court has recognized that the government has an interest in protecting the life of unborn children, and the brief asks the Supreme Court to live up to their own standards.

If the Supreme Court is unwilling to revisit Roe v. Wade yet, the brief argues that Louisiana’s law should be allowed to stand. Louisiana’s law is constitutional even under the faulty standards of Roe v. Wade and the 2016 case involving a similar Texas law, Whole Women’s Health v. Hellerstedt.

Listing said, “Since Roe v. Wade was decided, an estimated 60 million unborn children have had their lives unjustly taken from them. No voter or elected official consented to strip away their right to life. It’s time for this stain on democracy to be overturned to allow the people to once again have a voice about our most fundamental human right.”

The brief was prepared by lead counsel Professor William Wagner and the Great Lakes Justice Center.

379,418 Signatures Submitted to End Dismemberment Abortions

prolifeDecember 23, 2019, Lansing, MI — The Michigan Values Life coalition submitted 379,418 signatures believed to be valid to the Michigan Bureau of Elections today to initiate legislation to ban dismemberment abortions in Michigan.

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, “This is a wonderful Christmas present to the unborn. Michigan values life, and it’s time for an end to these violent late-term dismemberment abortions.”

The legal signature requirement for citizen-initiated legislation in Michigan is 340,047, based on the total votes for governor in the previous election.

Listing said, “Our committed all-volunteer force persevered through significant obstacles that kept being put in their path this year. We’ve received more than 400,000 signatures, but after thorough checking, we’ve whittled it down to our final total of valid signatures.”

A change in the petition law in 2018 required a change in Right to Life of Michigan’s time-tested validation process. Each petition received has been checked at least four times.

Listing said, “We set a state record for the highest signature validity rate with our 2004 petition drive to ban partial-birth abortions. We hope our dismemberment ban meets or exceeds that validity rate of 97 percent.”

The Bureau of Elections will take several weeks to determine the validity of the submitted signatures, and once enough signatures are confirmed the legislation will be sent to the Michigan Legislature. The Legislature will have 40 days to consider the dismemberment ban, which after successful majority votes will become law without Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s signature. Initiated legislation that isn’t passed into law is placed on the general election ballot for a public vote.

Listing said, “The 379,418 people who signed their names on this life-saving dismemberment ban should be confident that our prolife majorities in the Michigan Legislature will pass the bill again, just like they did back in May.”

The dismemberment abortion procedure is the most frequently used late-term abortion procedure. The procedure works exactly like it sounds; an unborn child is dismembered and removed from her mother’s womb, one limb at a time. In 2018, there were 1,908 dismemberment abortions in Michigan reported to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

The dismemberment ban bills include an exception if the mother’s life is in danger. However, in published research on reasons women have abortions, the pro-abortion Alan Guttmacher Institute has stated that most late-term abortions are done for economic or social reasons.

Whitmer Calls for Unlimited Abortions Like New York

submitted by Genevieve Marnon

October 29, 2019, Lansing, MI — Today, Governor Whitmer and pro-abortion allies held a press conference to unveil what they call the Reproductive Health Act. The New York-style act would allow unlimited abortions in the state of Michigan up to the point of birth.

The act has not been introduced yet in the Legislature.

The legislation would repeal Michigan’s complete ban on abortions, which is only partially enforceable because of the U.S. Supreme Court. Michigan’s complete ban was backed by 60% of Michigan voters in 1972, but the vote was overturned by the Supreme Court’s decisions in Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton which legalized abortion-on-demand through all nine months of pregnancy.

The Reproductive Health Act would codify the Supreme Court’s decisions in state law, but it would also undo many widely supported prolife laws.

According to talking points provided by Planned Parenthood, the legislation would:
Allow minor teens to have secret abortions without their parents’ consent—or even knowledge.
Allow abortion facilities to ignore health and safety regulations that other medical clinics follow.
Allow abortion facilities to refuse to provide informed consent to women.
Allow walk-in abortions with no waiting period.

Based on the provided talking points and similar legislation in other states, the Reproductive Health Act may do the following:
Repeal Michigan’s ban on tax-funded abortions that has saved an estimated 236,935 lives since 1989.
Allow nurses and physician assistants to perform surgical abortions.

During her press conference remarks, Governor Whitmer also criticized Right to Life of Michigan’s petition drive to ban dismemberment abortions.

Governor Whitmer said, “They’ve already passed a bill to ban a safe procedure that has saved women’s lives. And as they know, I’m going to veto those bills if they ever have the backbone to send them to my desk.”

The following statement is from Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing:

It’s no surprise that Governor Gretchen Whitmer wants to follow New York’s lead and allow unlimited abortion-on-demand in Michigan. We know most Michiganders do not support secret teen abortions, unregulated medical facilities, or abortions up to the point of birth.

Governor Whitmer claims our petition drive to end dismemberment abortions is banning a ‘safe’ procedure. There’s nothing safe for a child during the later stages of pregnancy when her arms and legs are torn off by forceps, and her body and skull crushed and removed. The bill to end dismemberment abortions has a life of the mother exception, so her rhetoric is as empty as her compassion for viable children who can survive outside the womb.

Prolife people have plenty of backbone, which is why we continue to collect 400,000 signatures on a bill to end the dismemberment abortion procedure that rips backbones out of viable children. Most Americans do not support late-term abortions, and it’s time for Governor Whitmer to respect that Michigan values life.

RTL.org | info@rtl.org

Governor Whitmer’s Reproductive Health Act Explained

submitted by Right to Life of Michigan

November 4, 2019, Lansing, MI — The bills making up Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s Reproductive Health Act (RHA) were introduced into the Legislature on October 31, and Right to Life of Michigan staff have analyzed the changes to Michigan law.

The main bills are identical, SB 622 and HB 5179, and the other bills in the RHA remove sentencing or references to laws it would repeal.

The following are major changes to state law, and scenarios the bills would allow that are based on real events.

Major changes:
Repeals Michigan’s complete abortion ban and codifies an unlimited health exception in state law.
Creates an unlimited right to abortion, which could have broad implications. Allows women to sue for damages if she believes that right is being restricted in any way.
Repeals the partial-birth abortion ban.
Nullifies the current petition drive to enact a ban on dismemberment abortions (which amends the partial-birth abortion ban).
Allows abortion facilities to be unregulated and never be inspected.
Removes parental consent requirements.
Removes waiting periods and requirements that abortionists provide women with informed consent and an opportunity to see her ultrasound.
Removes mandated screening for abortion coercion.
Opens the door for any medical professional to perform a surgical abortion.
Stops local governments and schools from regulating abortion in any way, including through zoning laws.

A woman who is 30-weeks pregnant decides to have an abortion after her boyfriend abandons her. Her relationship situation qualifies as a “health” exception. Rather than completing the birth to allow the viable child a chance to survive, the child is stabbed in the head during the process of birth and her brains are suctioned out.
A fire marshal is called after receiving an anonymous report about the poor conditions of an uninspected surgical abortion facility. The facility has water damage, rusty surgical equipment, blood spatters on walls, and garbage lying around. The fire marshal decides to let it remain open because he exposes himself to a lawsuit if he tries to close it.
A 16-year old pregnant girl walks to the abortion facility located across the street from her school. She is given no informed consent materials, forbidden from seeing the ultrasound of her baby when she asks for it, and her surgical abortion is completed during the school day. Her parents never find out. The school can’t discipline her for skipping school because of her unlimited right to abortion.
A sex trafficker takes his pregnant 13-year old victim to an abortion facility, no questions are asked, no medical professional is present, and the victim is sent home with her sex trafficker and abortion pills prescribed by a nurse via Skype.
A college athlete becomes pregnant. Her coach demands she have an abortion, threatening to pull her scholarship. The athlete doesn’t want an abortion, but she knows she has no legal recourse to address her coach’s coercion. The abortion facility staff rushes to get her into the procedure room before she changes her mind.

Other changes worth noting:
Doesn’t repeal the ban on Medicaid-funded abortions (as we speculated in our October 29 press release). However, creating an unlimited right to abortion in state law could potentially impact it.
An unlimited right to abortion and allowing women to sue for damages could broadly impact conscience protections for healthcare workers.
Repeals the Abortion Insurance Opt-Out Act, allowing for insurance plans to have abortion coverage as a required benefit.
Redefines fetal viability from the point a child can survive outside the womb to when a child can survive without “extraordinary” care. “Extraordinary” is undefined and could include common situations like a child sent to a neonatal intensive care unit. This ominous change could have implications for how disabled children and children who survive botched abortions are treated.
Defines pregnancy in law at the point when the child implants in the womb, not when the child is conceived.

RTL.org | info@rtl.org

Another Long Prolife Journey

You may have heard the news that the U.S. Supreme Court refused to take up Alabama’s ban on dismemberment abortions. While frustrating for prolife people working on our petition drive to end dismemberment abortions in Michigan, it’s not a cause for alarm.

Right to Life of Michigan’s effort to end dismemberment amends our state’s partial-birth abortion ban; expect a process similar to the long effort to ban partial-birth abortions. That took four laws, three court cases and a petition drive. At one point the U.S. Supreme Court even ruled against a partial-birth abortion ban!

It took patience and hard work, but we achieved that goal. Now we face the next step.

The Supreme Court has the first conservative majority since 1937, but they seem hesitant to advance the prolife legal frontier in 2019. They’ve also declined to take up Indiana’s ban on abortions targeted at disabled children, and federal judges have blocked heartbeat bans and other bans in other states.

It’s tempting to give in to frustration, especially for those new to the prolife movement who have mistakenly believed prolife bans in states like Alabama and Georgia were going into immediate effect. Because of Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, our judges control abortion law instead of people and their elected representatives. So far, our top judges aren’t ready to budge. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has commented on his colleagues’ lack of courage and wrote they can’t continue ignoring abortion.

Contrary to wish-casting from pro-abortion talking heads in the media, the prolife movement’s activity on the state level has not created a backlash. The latest Gallup poll even shows gains in prolife sentiment.

Prolife people can’t control Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts’ courage level, but we can control our effort. We must continue to press on and educate people about abortion. President Trump continues to appoint excellent judges to change the legal landscape. It’s up to us to continue prolife momentum on the ground. The way to do that in Michigan is by completing our dismemberment ban petition drive.

We’re confident someday Roe v. Wade will go, and Michigan will restore our legal protection for every unborn child. The day that happens is beyond our direct control, but prolife people will continue to clear the path forward to it.

If you’d like to walk this path with us, visit michiganvalueslife.org and help end dismemberment abortions in Michigan.

Chris Gast
Director of Communication/Education

Planned Parenthood Plans Violence at Michigan Life Chain?

September 19, 2019 – The following commentary on a Planned Parenthood organizing e-mail was posted on our website this afternoon. For some background, we don’t know what “District 9” is, since Arenac County is not in a 9th district for Congress or the Michigan Legislative. The county is very small with fewer than 20,000 people, and this Life Chain will be held in Standish, a small town with fewer than 2,000 people. Their Life Chain is being held early, so perhaps this is a trial run for wider disruptions in October.

This week a somewhat disturbing e-mail from a Planned Parenthood e-mail group was forwarded to us. Planned Parenthood sent the following message from District9@plannedparenthood.org on Tuesday, September 17, at 4:33 p.m.:


Wanted to give you a heads up that we are organizing a stomp the bans march on Sept 29, 2019

The goal is to directly disrupt The Arenac County Right to Life, “life” chain.

Bring a lunch!!

“Stop the Bans” is Planned Parenthood’s marketing slogan for opposing recent prolife legislative efforts on the state level.

So, what does “stomp the bans” mean, then? Was it a typo? Was it a Planned Parenthood staff member taking artistic license for humorous effect? Probably.

However, there has been a recent rise in violent or criminal acts perpetrated against prolife people. “Stomp” is certainly a violent metaphor in an already divisive issue that has sadly seen violence, including abortion facility workers and prolife individuals being victimized. This has happened in Michigan, with the murder of prolife activist James Pouillon in Owosso in 2009.

As we’ve seen too many times recently, it doesn’t take much to set off a mentally unstable person. Consider some incidents in the last year, none of which are funny:

Right to Life of Michigan’s office vandalized
Abortion supporter round-house kicks prolife protestor in Toronto
Pennsylvania State Rep. puts bounty on doxxing prolife teens
85-year-old prolife volunteer assaulted outside Planned Parenthood in San Francisco
Prolife protester sent to hospital after assault outside Florida Planned Parenthood

While people have a right to assemble and even peacefully counter-protest, directly disrupting events of others is totally beneath civilized discourse, and violent rhetoric has no place in the abortion debate.

Are Late-term Abortions Rare?

“Well, late-term abortions are rare!” How often have you heard that line? Usually its context is to dismiss arguments for banning late-term abortions.

Is it true, though?

Well, if late-term abortions are rare, so are many other common causes of death.

Rare is a subjective term. The best way to determine if something is rare is to compare it to related things people would say are common.

For abortion supporters, they seek to compare late-term abortions to early abortions. A familiar line you might hear is that late-term abortions are only 1% of all abortions. Because there are a massive number of abortions occurring in the United States, that 1% number is quite high.

According to the pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute, there were an estimated 926,200 abortions in the United States in 2014, the most recent estimate. The Centers for Disease Control publishes an annual report with detailed abortion statistics from most states. They routinely find that about 1.3% of abortions take place after 20 weeks of pregnancy. If you do the math, that’s 12,000 abortions after 20 weeks every year.

Are 12,000 deaths rare? In 2014, there were 11,008 homicides using a gun in the U.S. Would you describe gun violence as rare?

Often people supporting abortion make an argument like this: if prolife people cared, then they would support gun control. Right to Life of Michigan is completely neutral on issues unrelated to our mission. Gun control groups are similarly neutral on abortion. Late-term abortions are more common than gun homicides, so gun control groups should ignore their mission and help us ban late-term abortions: who would take this suggestion seriously?

Let’s look at some Michigan numbers. The most common late-term abortion procedure in our state is the dismemberment abortion procedure (D&E), used most often between 12 and 24 weeks of pregnancy. In 2017, there were 1,777 dismemberment abortions in Michigan.

In 2017 in Michigan, there were more dismemberment abortions than these all-too-common causes of death: breast cancer, car accidents, colon cancer, homicide, pancreatic cancer, Parkinson’s disease, pneumonia, and suicide.

Would you tell someone who has breast cancer that their disease is rare?

Would you say suicide is so rare that it shouldn’t be addressed as a public policy issue?

If you can’t say those things, then you can’t claim late-term abortions are rare as an excuse to ignore them—or to make a twisted moral justification for them.

Chris Gast
Director of Communication/Education
(616) 532-2300 | RTL.org

Whitmer Vetoes Support for Pregnant and Parenting Students

On October 1, 2019, Lansing, MI, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced she vetoed a state budget allocation for a program she voted for as a state legislator.

All of the $150,000 allocated for the Pregnant and Parenting Student Services Act in the 2020 state budget was vetoed by Governor Whitmer. The Act created a fund for higher education institutions to establish offices to assist students who are pregnant or parenting children.

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, “Governor Whitmer is now an abortion ideologue. If this program included funding for students to have abortions instead of helping them parent through school, she would have never touched it.”

The Pregnant and Parenting Student Services Act was signed into law by Governor Jennifer Granholm in 2004. It passed the Michigan House by a unanimous vote, including support from then State Representative Gretchen Whitmer.

Because of the state’s economic downturn, the program never received state funding to get off the ground. The 2020 state budget was the first to include funding.

Listing said, “Services for parenting and pregnant students on campuses are rarely even mentioned, let alone prioritized. The message our culture sends today is too often that women must choose between education and the life of their child. We can do more for mothers on campus, and at one time Governor Whitmer seemed to understand that.”

Included in Governor Whitmer’s budget line-item vetoes was the Real Alternatives program, which provides funding for organizations that help women of any age experiencing crisis pregnancies. Governor Whitmer cut all $700,000 of the funding allocated by the Legislature.

Listing said, “Governor Whitmer views even small pregnancy help programs as competition to the abortion industry that must be run out of business. Governor Whitmer will always put Planned Parenthood’s bottom line as a higher priority than women who choose life in difficult circumstances.”

Despite Governor Whitmer’s funding cuts, prolife pregnancy help and adoption organizations will continue to serve women and men in need across the state at more than 150 locations. Prolife students will continue to advocate for their colleges to do more to help pregnant college students remain in school.

Listing said, “Abortion advocates claim prolife people don’t care about women facing crisis pregnancies. But when prolife people try to help, these same abortion advocates do everything they can to shut us down.”

Protect Life Rule Saves Lives

By Kaylee Tegethoff

On August 19, 2019, Planned Parenthood doubled down on their commitment to abortion by withdrawing from the federally-funded Title X family planning program. Planned Parenthood gave up about $60 million of your tax dollars instead of accepting the new Title X requirements implemented by the Trump Administration.

The new requirements, termed the “Protect Life Rule,” require all federal funds provided through the program be sent to organizations that do not perform or refer for abortions. These requirements uphold the intent of the original law creating the Title X program.

The estimated $60 million Planned Parenthood receives each year in Title X funds accounts for about a tenth of the total taxpayer funding the abortion giant receives. Although the Protect Life Rule eliminates just a small portion of their funding, it is still an important and influential first step in defunding Planned Parenthood.

The Protect Life Rule also demonstrates President Trump’s commitment to protecting the unborn and conscience rights. Instead of that $60 million enriching abortion providers, those funds will be redirected to non-abortion health clinics.

Even without your tax dollars, Planned Parenthood continues to profit from abortions, including late-term abortions through primarily the dismemberment procedure. Right to Life of Michigan and grassroots volunteers across the state are hard at work collecting signatures to ban the dismemberment abortion procedure in Michigan. You can learn more and join the effort at michiganvalueslife.org.

Banning dismemberment abortions in Michigan will cut the profits of abortion providers such as Planned Parenthood and save the lives of vulnerable unborn children. Just as the Protect Life Rule proved Planned Parenthood’s top priority is their abortion services, the petition drive to end dismemberment abortions exposes the abortion industry and their radical commitment to ending lives through barbaric abortion procedures.

Prolife efforts are winning at the national, state and local level. We can see the progress being made on the federal level with the Trump Administration’s implementation of the Protect Life Rule. On the state level, the ongoing petition drive to end dismemberment abortions continues to receive thousands of signatures every day.

Locally, we’ve seen several recent successes. In April, Muskegon County ended Planned Parenthood’s sweetheart deal allowing them access to the county health building. The most recent numbers show their county health department is serving even more patients as a result.

Diverting taxpayer funds and banning barbaric abortion procedures are two areas of life-saving prolife progress worth celebrating.

RLM-PAC Endorses President Trump, John James

On August 28, 2019, Grand Rapids, MI, the Right to Life of Michigan Political Action Committee announced 2020 election endorsements for President Donald Trump and John James.

Early endorsements by Right to Life of Michigan Political Action Committee (RLM-PAC) are rare. John James is the only major prolife candidate who has filed to run against U.S. Senator Gary Peters.

John James was the only U.S. Senate candidate in 2018 endorsed by the RLM-PAC.

RLM-PAC Chairman Paul Miller said, “John James is a wonderful man who will protect unborn children. He has cleared the field. He ran a strong 2018 campaign against Senator Debbie Stabenow. It was unfortunate that he had to use resources on a primary challenge from a candidate who wasn’t 100-percent prolife.”

The U.S. Senate currently has a thin prolife majority. There are 53 current senators with 100% prolife voting records, though two of those senators are not reliable prolife votes.

Miller said, “Having a prolife Senate is vital, and it may come down to John James. After the Kavanaugh nomination, it should be clear that a Senate with a pro-abortion majority will not just block nominees who don’t agree with them, but personally destroy them.”

On July 4, 2019, the National Right to Life Committee endorsed President Trump. The RLM-PAC affirmed the endorsement for his re-election campaign in Michigan.

Miller said, “Donald Trump was the first prolife presidential candidate to carry Michigan since 1988. President Trump invested in Michigan and that commitment paid off.”

President Trump’s prolife victories include nominations of two fair U.S. Supreme Court justices and numerous other judges. His administration has enforced and expanded several important regulations, making him the first president to successfully defund Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider.

Miller said, “For decades, the abortion industry has relied on cheating the system, whether it’s through biased judges or ignoring laws and regulations. President Trump has made holding the abortion industry accountable an important objective.”

End Dismemberment Petition Drive Halfway at the Halfway Point

September 30, 2019, Grand Rapids, MI — More than 200,000 signatures to end dismemberment abortions have been received at the Right to Life of Michigan office.

Last week marked the halfway point of the Michigan Values Life petition drive, and the signatures received represent half of the 400,000 goal. 340,047 valid signatures are necessary to initiate legislation to ban the late-term dismemberment abortion procedure.

Right to Life of Michigan President Barb Listing said, “We are thankful for all the dedicated volunteers circulating petitions, and we are confident our incredible volunteers will collect the required number of signatures.”

The signature count does not include signatures thought to be invalid. The count only includes petitions received at the Right to Life of Michigan state office—not the total number of signatures gathered by volunteers. Petitions with signatures dated in July continue to be received daily.

Listing said, “We know people are holding completed petitions. Because of the time it takes to check all the signatures, we strongly encourage everyone to send in petitions as they are completed so we can count them.”

31,721 petitions have been received and counted as of Friday, September 27. More received petitions remain to be counted and more than 300,000 petitions are currently circulating in the field. Each petition has spaces for 8 signatures.

The first signatures were collected on June 26, 2019. The 180-day window to collect signatures ends on December 23, 2019.

Listing said, “Now that we are into the fall season, petitions are coming in more rapidly. We are hopeful after a strong push the signature gathering will be wrapped up before the holiday season.”

Right to Life of Michigan will give volunteers 14 days’ notice before a deadline to send in all collected signatures. Volunteers will continue collecting signatures at least through October and likely into mid-November.

More information about the petition can be found on the petition drive website, www.michiganvalueslife.org.

Michigan Women Have Fewer Abortions; Dismemberment Abortions Increase

Grand Rapids, MI — The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services released the 2018 Michigan abortion report earlier this year. Michigan residents receiving abortions declined by 203, from 25,757 in 2017 to 25,554 in 2018.

Abortions performed in Michigan increased in 2018, with an additional 325 women from other states traveling to Michigan to have abortions (1,162 total).

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, “It’s always good when fewer Michigan women have abortions. However, it’s tragic there are still so many children whose lives and futures are being taken from them.”

The number of dismemberment abortions (D&E) increased in Michigan by 7 percent. There were 1,908 dismemberment abortions in 2018, compared to 1,777 in 2017.

Listing said, “Our petition drive to ban the dismemberment abortion procedure is needed to help save lives. It’s wrong that a child in the womb can have their arms and legs ripped off. Such a barbaric act tarnishes the practice of medicine.”

A majority of the decline in Michigan resident abortions occurred in the city of Detroit. There were 6,061 abortions on Detroit residents in 2018, compared to 6,181 in 2017. In recent years, Right to Life of Michigan has given grants to pregnancy centers in Detroit and created a website listing pregnancy and childcare-related help organizations in Detroit: HelpintheD.org.

Listing said, “We hope our efforts have helped save those 120 lives, and we will continue to support our prolife pregnancy centers in the area as they offer women life-giving options.”

Despite the Detroit decrease, abortions performed on Black women remain tragically high. The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that 14.1 percent of Michigan’s population is Black, yet a majority of abortions in Michigan were performed on Black women in 2018 (50.1 percent).

Listing said, “Many people are shocked to learn that abortion has taken more Black lives than every other cause of death combined since 1973. As long as the abortion industry continues to target Black women with messages that their children are obstacles to their lives or our society, we’ll continue to offer them alternatives and hope.”

There have been 1,247,737 reported induced abortions in Michigan since 1980, when reporting first began. Abortions in Michigan have declined 45.6 percent from their high in 1987.

Right to Life of Michigan used a petition drive in 1987 to initiate our ban on Medicaid tax-funded abortions in the state. The law went into effect on December 12, 1988. Abortions decreased by 22 percent in 1989. Using that figure, our ban on Medicaid-funded abortions has saved 236,965 lives and counting since 1989.

Listing said, “Prolife laws save lives. We’re going to continue efforts to protect every unborn child’s basic human right to life. We mourn every life lost to abortion, but we celebrate every person alive today thanks to the efforts of prolife volunteers around the state and the mothers who chose life.”

Where Does America Stand on Abortion?

Abortion is all over the news lately. Sadly, many of these stories give people an incomplete picture of abortion. Before we discuss what Americans believe, we should reflect on what they don’t know.

We must start with Roe v. Wade, which keeps abortion legal in America by blocking enforcement of any significant ban on abortion. Many people falsely believe the abortion bans recently passed in several states have gone into immediate effect. What is needed is a basic civics refresher on how our judicial system works. Roe v. Wade continues to block every significant abortion ban until the U.S. Supreme Court overturns it.

Doe v. Bolton was an abortion case decided by the Supreme Court on the same day as Roe v. Wade. The “health” exception for abortion mentioned so frequently was defined in Doe v. Bolton to include essentially everything. Thus, Roe and Doe together keep abortion legal for every reason throughout all nine months of pregnancy by blocking enforcement of abortion bans.

Few have heard of Doe, and thus most have no idea what Roe really does. Asking people what they think about Roe is about as effective as asking them what they think about admiralty law and the 2008 court case United States v. Approximately 64,695 Pounds of Shark Fins (the shark fins won, by the way).

We continue to see a pattern of a woefully misinformed public. Most people think late-term abortions are performed for actual health reasons, but most are actually for economic or social reasons. Most people think millions of women died before Roe v. Wade from illegal abortions, even though the Washington Post called out Planned Parenthood recently for that data-free claim.

Truthfully, most Americans want to avoid abortion. They don’t understand it.  Most seem uncomfortable with entirely banning it, yet recoil in horror when abortion truths manage to reach them.

A clear picture emerges when polling companies like Gallup break down abortion questions by reasons and pregnancy trimesters. A majority of Americans would ban abortions for social or economic reasons, meaning more than 90% of abortions that occur today would be illegal if the views of the American people controlled our laws. An even larger majority of Americans would ban late-term abortions.

Our petition drive to ban the late-term dismemberment abortion procedure in Michigan will enjoy broad support; the procedure is so horrific that to merely describe it is to oppose it.

Chris Gast
Director of Communication/Education
(616) 532-2300 | RTL.org

Dismemberment Ban Petition Approved

Lansing, MI — On June 19, 2019, the Michigan Board of State Canvassers approved the summary and form of the Michigan Values Life petition to ban dismemberment abortions (D&E) in Michigan.

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, “Our affiliates and volunteers around the state are excited we’re able to begin collecting signatures to end this barbaric procedure in Michigan.”

Michigan Values Life is the name of the committee Right to Life of Michigan organized to collect signatures to initiate the legislation into the Michigan Legislature. The legislation can be passed into law by majority votes in the Legislature with no input from Governor Gretchen Whitmer, who has promised to veto the legislation.

The dismemberment ban itself is the same as the bills passed by the Michigan House and Senate in May. A section has been added allowing the Michigan Legislature to intervene in lawsuits in case Attorney General Dana Nessel refuses to defend the law in court.

It will take a few weeks for the petitions to be printed and distributed to volunteers who have already expressed interest. State law requires signatures to be collected within 180 days. A petition order form, circulating instructions, and other materials are available on the Michigan Values Life website: michiganvalueslife.org.

Retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy used the term “dismemberment” to describe dilation and evacuation abortions (D&E).

In his opinion in Stenberg v. Carhart, Justice Kennedy wrote, “The fetus, in many cases, dies just as a human adult or child would: It bleeds to death as it is torn limb from limb. The fetus can be alive at the beginning of the dismemberment process and can survive for a time while its limbs are being torn off.”

The dismemberment abortion procedure is the most frequently used late-term abortion procedure. In 2018, there were 1,908 dismemberment abortions in Michigan reported to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

The dismemberment ban bills include an exception if the mother’s life is in danger. However, in published research on reasons women have abortions, the pro-abortion Alan Guttmacher Institute has stated that most late-term abortions are done for elective reasons.

Dismembering Human Beings is Wrong

Since New York endorsed abortion-on-demand through all nine months of pregnancy, prolifers have been on the move. Many people who considered themselves prolife but didn’t commit themselves to regular efforts to end abortion have suddenly been awakened and activated.

Many of those people have seen prolife legislation in other states and wonder what Michigan will do. In Michigan, our focus will be a ban on dismemberment abortions (also called a D&E abortion).

Sadly, in Michigan, this prolife crescendo came at a bad time. Michigan went from having an indifferent governor in Rick Snyder to now having an actively pro-abortion governor in Gretchen Whitmer. The silver lining is Michigan voters returned prolife majorities to the Legislature.

Thankfully, Michigan’s Constitution has a provision that allows citizens to initiate legislation directly to the Legislature by collecting a large number of signatures. If the Michigan House and Senate approve the legislation, it becomes law without the governor.

Right to Life of Michigan and local affiliates have been very successful in the past using these petition drives, most recently in 2013. Such an effort requires a laser-like focus, and for the next two years our focus is on banning dismemberment abortion.

Several other states have advanced different prolife laws: bans on abortion after 20 weeks, heartbeat bans, bans on targeted abortions for reasons of sex-selection or disability, etc. Most of these laws require Roe v. Wade to be overturned to be effective.

Michigan is unique. Michigan currently has a law on the books banning abortion except to save the life of the mother. After Roe was decided in 1973, the Michigan Supreme Court ruled that our law remains in legal effect, but not fully enforceable. The day Roe v. Wade is overturned, our law has an opportunity to be restored to full effect. So, Michigan law already bans abortions after 20 weeks, or after a heartbeat is detected, or abortions targeted at specific demographics; we’ve got that covered.

A ban on dismemberment abortion is different. It’s the next prolife law likely to be upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court if they aren’t willing to fully overturn Roe v. Wade yet. Crucially, it allows us to educate people about abortion itself. A dismemberment abortion involves tearing the arms and legs off a child in the later stages of pregnancy.

Dismembering a human being goes against our Michigan values and it’s time for us to stop it.

Chris Gast
Director of Communication/Education

Dismemberment Abortion Ban Introduced in Michigan

March 12, 2019, Lansing, Mich. -– Legislation to ban dismemberment abortions in Michigan was introduced today in the Michigan House.

House Bills 4320 and 4321 would amend Michigan’s 2011 ban on partial-birth abortions by including the dismemberment abortion procedure, also known as a dilation and evacuation abortion (D&E).

Right to Life of Michigan President Barbara Listing said, “These bills are Michigan’s response to New York’s abortion law and other states seeking to explicitly allow abortions through all nine months of pregnancy for any reason.”

Retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy accurately described dismemberment/D&E abortions in his opinions in the U.S. Supreme Court’s decisions on partial-birth abortion in Gonzales v. Carhart (2007) and Stenberg v. Carhart (2000).

In Gonzales, Justice Kennedy wrote, “The doctor, often guided by ultrasound, inserts grasping forceps through the woman’s cervix and into the uterus to grab the fetus. The doctor grips a fetal part with the forceps and pulls it back through the cervix and vagina, continuing to pull even after meeting resistance from the cervix. The friction causes the fetus to tear apart. For example, a leg might be ripped off the fetus as it is pulled through the cervix and out of the woman.”

In Stenberg, Justice Kennedy wrote, “The fetus, in many cases, dies just as a human adult or child would: It bleeds to death as it is torn from limb from limb. The fetus can be alive at the beginning of the dismemberment process and can survive for a time while its limbs are being torn off.”

Listing said, “In his opinion, Justice Anthony Kennedy rightly said that dismemberment abortions are ‘laden with the power to devalue human life.’ Tearing the arms and legs off children in the later stages of pregnancy is not a good reflection of our Michigan values.”

The dismemberment abortion procedure is the most frequently-used late-term abortion procedure in America and Michigan. In 2017, there were 1,777 dismemberment abortions in Michigan reported to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. Of those, 98 percent occurred in the second trimester, between 13 and 24 weeks of pregnancy.

In published research on reasons women have abortions, the pro-abortion Alan Guttmacher Institute has stated that most late-term abortions are done for elective reasons.

In a 2013 study the Guttmacher Institute published, the authors admitted, “But data suggest that most women seeking later terminations are not doing so for reasons of fetal anomaly or life endangerment.”

Listing said, “Opinion polls routinely show a majority of Americans believe late-term abortions should be illegal. Dismemberment abortions are obvious violence and that’s not how we should be treating our own children.”