Coat Hangers At Dawn

Following the attempts by the fundamentalist extremist religious right in South Dakota to ban contraception, abortion, sex ed and their war on everyone who disagrees with them.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

New Political Ad - Uses The Sodomized Virgin Speech

Focus South Dakota has a new ad they are running. It's pretty good. So will they have that checklist at the hospital ER?

Vote Yes - Desperate Last Minute Out Of State Begging

Vote yes is back asking the Jerry Falwell set for more money. Using Alan Keyes they held another emergency conference call to beg out of state people to send money to South Dakota. Just remember that this abortion ban mess is brought to you by the out of state religious extremists who have buddied up with Leslee Unruh.

One piece of misinformation they have been repeatedly pushing is the amount of money SDCHF has. First they said it was four million and obviously that was just not enough to get their flock to pony up the cash. Now they are claiming that there is 8 million dollars. Campaign statements are due to the state today. Just remember their claim when the actual campaign funds statements come out. You will find yet another big whopper of a lie from vote yes.

They must be getting desperate, they seem to have lost most of their adult volunteers, there has been considerable in-fighting within the campaign and their entire fundraising effort is focused out of state to the far extreme factions of Jerry Falwell and Alan Keyes.

Funny, they can't muster support for their own cause is a state they claim is "pro-life".

Thanks to SD Progressive for the scoop.

Abstinence For Adults Now Too

It was only a matter of time. Now the federal government is extending their financial support of abstinence til marriage programs not only to teens but to ADULTS. That's right. If your unmarried and under 29 you are not allowed to have sex anymore. We wish we were joking.

The federal HHS program is not giving away money to groups like Unruh's Abstinence Clearinghouse so they can try to tell adults they can't have sex unless they are in an approved marriage. This crap has gone too far.

Will They Ban This Too?

Researchers are within five years of having the first male contraceptive implant. One version would work with hormones the other version would not. Both would be implantable devices. The non hormonal version has no side effects and both allow full fertility to return within three months.
So will this too be regulated and banned as the anti-abortion groups repeatedly go after traditional contraception for women? Or will this product be given their stamp of approval like Viagra?

Don't Sit Back - Now Is the Time To Volunteer

Don't think the job is done just because the Argus poll says the ban might be overturned. Have no doubt that Leslee Unruh and her freaky minions will do everything in their power including the illegal and immoral to get their way on election day. The wacky religious right has a track record of actively dragging anyone with a pulse to the polls on election day. If the ban is going to be overturned people have to actually get there and vote and your help is needed to make that happen. Even if you can only spare an hour or two somewhere in the next week it will make a huge difference.

1. Make sure you vote. Know where your polling place is, or go to your country auditor's office and vote early.
2. Make sure everyone in your house that is registered to vote does so. Ask them, tell them make sure they go.
3. Remind your friends and family how important this election is, urge them to go vote.
4. VOLUNTEER. This is the most important one. SDCHF has lots of volunteers but with the increased workload this last week they need more people to lend a hand.

Contact SD Healthy Families to volunteer or to get more information.

If you still want a yard sign contact their office. The most recent word was that they were going fast but they still had a few left.

Rally - Tomorrow - Noon - Be There

WHO: Jan Nicolay, Campaign for Healthy Families Co-Chair
Kate Looby, state director for Planned Parenthood
Rep. Casey Murschel
South Dakotans who believe Referred Law 6 simply goes too far

WHAT: Press Conference and Rally

WHEN: Wednesday November 1, 2006 12:00 PM CST

WHERE: Old Federal Courthouse Square
Phillips Avenue between 12th and 13th Street
Sioux Falls, SD

Also in Rapid City at 9th and St. Joseph

Tribes - No Endorsement On Abortion Ban

The Argus front page today has details on how the ban is playing out with Indian voters.

None of the tribes has endorsed either side and personal opinion on the issue is varied. Some stated that this issue is none of men's business. Others felt the ban was a non-issue due to sovereignty, while some were offended by government intrusion into personal decisions. Some said they would vote for the ban. The head of the Pine Ridge domestic violence program said that abortion really has not been an issue anyone discussed before until the ban and that there is a diversity of thought on the issue.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Don't Forget Wednesday Noon Rally

Stand Up South Dakota Rally.

Noon this Wednesday.
In Sioux Falls in front of the Federal Courthouse 900 S. Phillips
In Rapid City at 9th & St. Joseph

Be there, stand up for South Dakota and overturning the ban.

More Vote Yes How Low Can They Go

One of their tactics that had gained less notice in the media was the co-opting of the Native American community. Vote Yes produced a number of signs that attempt to confuse voters into thinking that the Native American community has lended their support to the Vote Yes campaign.
None of the tribes have endorsed this tactic by Vote Yes. This is another desceptive tactic by Leslee Unruh to co-opt a group of people without their consent for her own means. We have also been told that Vote Yes tried to put up these signs on various reservation land and the locals went and took them down.

It has also become well known that Vote Yes is staffing its campaign almost exclusively with pre-teens and teenagers. With the exception of about 5 adults the campaign is being staffed by kids. So where are the adults that support this? Maybe there aren't any. CNN TV had a story today that had video confirming what was already well known. It showed the campaign headquarters and a street protest that was almost entirely under age teens, many not old enough to drive. Adults don't believe enough in this issue to staff their campaign and they have to rely on the kids of whatever local fundamentalist church that is lending them to the campaign.

Then that brings us to the really ugly portion of their campaign. Vote Yes has been begging within the religious extremist communities for protesters to come to South Dakota. Evidence of this has been in numerous print articles and also in their recorded conference call. Instead of getting adults to help staff their campaign they brought in some rather crazy extremists. Unruh has tried unsuccessfully to distance herself from them, but there are clearly ties and the same group has been cited with Vote Yes campaign signs inside their trucks.

The tactics Vote Yes has employed through these people is inexcusible. They are not only protesting outside Planned Parenthood almost daily with their fetal porn pictures but they are taking pictures of innocent people entering the clinic. They are also taking pictures of cars and license plates. These pictures are being posted on the internet. The bulk of people using Planned Parenthood are obtaining contraception and other routine healthcare. They are being singled out and harrassed with this tactic by Vote Yes. This same group has gone out and harassed people publicly opposing the ban and posting their pictures on the internet also.

Just remember if your thinking of voting yes, this is what your supporting.

SD Doctor's Personal Take On Abortion

This from a recent Sioux City Journal article.

"When Dr. Marty Allison was pregnant for the fourth time, she learned that her baby had anencephaly, a condition in which major parts of the brain do not develop. She decided to end the pregnancy because the baby could not have lived outside the womb.
"My husband and I, between the two of us and our God, made the decision that was appropriate for our family and for us. We were allowed to do that," said Allison, a pediatrician in Pierre.
Allison said such decisions should not be made by state government, and that is why she is opposing a ballot measure that would ban nearly all abortions in South Dakota.
"My position is one of pro-life. I don't believe in abortion on demand or for reasons of convenience," Allison said.
But the proposal on the Nov. 7 ballot does not allow abortions in cases of rape, incest, a threat to a woman's health or when a fetus cannot survive, she said.
"I believe there should be some exceptions," Allison said. "I believe there should be some compassion for women in those cases

Then there was this rebuttal from a Dr. Hansen from Vote Yes.
If a pregnant woman has breast cancer, she could have surgery, Hansen said. And radiation or chemotherapy, which could endanger a fetus, might not be necessary until the baby could be born, he said."

Might not. Might not be necessary. But what if it is? The law provides no option for a woman and a doctor in that case. There is also no exception in the ban that would allow a pregnancy to be terminated in situations like Dr. Allison's where the fetus has such a severe abnormality that it will clearly not survive once born.

This ban is a medical nightmare. We must not let religious extremism trump healthcare.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Unruh's A History Of Violence, Extremism and Criminal Behavior

We were recently connected with an individual with direct inside knowledge of the formative years of at least one half of the crazy Unruh clan. We were provided with a direct account from someone who knew Allen and his family well. You have to remember that small town South Dakota, no one holds a secret or at least not very long or very well.

Allen attended was was described as a "war like" evangelical Mennonite church near Marion. Hmm Marion, SD isn't that where Rounds is from?

This direct comment was the kicker.
"Allen’s father was an arrogant, show-off, two-bit, shyster con-man, and a wife abuser if there ever was one. The method he used to get rid of his wife’s pregnancy still haunts me - a
coat hanger would have been kinder."

The person who contacted us did so as they felt knowing the kind of situation at least one half of the Unruh clan grew up in might give some light to who he is today. How such a violent and corrupt upbringing might be playing itself out in such hatred of women or even a role reversal of what he was subjected to growing up.

Then there was this comment by the person who contacted us.
"Violence is the only family characteristic that has an inheritance guarantee and, in my opinion, legislating a woman’s body demonstrates a deranged violent hatred for women. Using potential babies as their scapegoats, and also using religion to justify and rationalize their own worst case of abuse against women"

DIA: Audio Truth about Referred Law 6

Robbinsdale Radical has details on some new radio ads produced by Democracy in Action, a grassroots group of women from Democratic, Republican and Independent backgrounds.

The spots include the real words, names and stories of people in South Dakota.

If you want to help get these spots on the air before election day contact DIA to contribute.

South Dakota Votes No on 6

A new poll done by Mason-Dixon for the Argus Leader shows that the majority of South Dakota voters plan to vote NO on 6. When compared to the previous reliable poll done in July this shows an increase in voters who will reject the ban.

When you think about this it is interesting. To date the vote yes camp has spent millions of dollars (provided courtesy of Jerry Falwell) and bombarded people with ads, rallies with speakers and yard signs. Dispite this large campaign, voters have turned away and most will reject the ban.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Pregnancy Advocate Group Blasts Vote Yes

The National Advocates For Pregnant Women has blasted Vote Yes on 6 for its misleading campaign claiming exceptions.

Even people advocating for women and pregnancy are blasting Vote Yes and the ban.

Guardian UK Puts The Squeeze On Vote Yes

The perspective of the ban issue from outside media is always interesting. The Guardian has some unique insight on the details of the ban campaigns.

"This is America's abortion debate in its purest, most distilled form: yes or no. There is no province for doubt. Should a woman be compelled to carry a baby to term when doctors tell her it will be born with no brain? Should a pregnant woman forgo potentially life-saving medical treatment for the sake of the baby she is carrying? Should a woman be forced to give birth to a child conceived in rape? Yes, yes and yes, says Leslee Unruh, the guiding light of South Dakota's anti-abortion activists."

The Guardian managed to corner Unruh and get her to admit exactly how cold and harsh this ban is and the horrible consequences it will have for women in South Dakota. Unruh's response seems extremely cruel for someone who claims to care about women.

The Guardian also reports that Vote Yes IS being used as a staging grounds for the anti-abortion picketing going on around town. Is there any doubt left that the angry protestors, the graphic signs and billboard vehicles are part of their strategy?

"Unruh is based at an industrial shed near the airport in Sioux Falls. This is where the protesters gather before they set out for the Planned Parenthood clinic, with their stark posters reading: "I regret my abortion.""

This statement Unruh made to the Guardian should make the entire state take notice. Not only does she admit that Vote Yes is currently losing the campaign but admits that she will continue to jam her agenda down the state's throat next year too. It's time to stop these extremists in their tracks.

"Unruh knows the stakes are high, and she acknowledges that her opponents may have the edge. But that does not deter her. If the ban is defeated, she says, she will march right back to the state legislature in January and start over again. "It will never be over," she insists."

British Medical Journal: SD Ban A Threat To Women's Health

In this week's BMJ, a senior doctor raises serious concerns over abortion law in the US state of South Dakota.

The article from the British Medical Journal also mentioned the constant harassment Dr Marvin Buehner is receiving from Vote Yes people who are picketing his office and intimidating his patients. Dr. Buehner does not perform abortions and is having his practice attacked simply for speaking out as a medical professional.

The ugly intimidation from Vote Yes continues.

Today 4pm - Stand Up Against The Ban

Don't forget. 4pm today. Stand up against the ban.

Meetup is at the SD Healthy Families office 109 N. Main (corner of 9th and Main) in Sioux Falls.

Walmart Generic Program Fails Women

Walmart has been in the news recently for their $4 prescription drug program. Anything that helps people obtain needed medications without having to decide between food and medicine is a good thing. Something that is missing is contraception. Not a single one is in the program.

Many common forms of birth control pills are available in generics. The cost for these common generic forms is between $12 and $25. This is comparable to the cost for many of the drugs now on Walmart's $4 list, like Amoxicillin or Albuterol. There is no cost excuse why Walmart would not put these drugs on the $4 drug list.

Walmart has a bad track record for discriminating against women's health and drug access. They received criticism for refusing to stock emergency contraception. Walmart reversed this decision after much outcry, but reports show that many stores claim to be out of stock or their pharmacists refuse to dispense it.

Putting some of the generic birth control pills on the discount program could mean that millions of younger and low income women would opt for pro-active responsibility and also more consistent contraceptive use. Twenty dollars may not sound like a big deal but to someone living on a college student's meager income or women counting change to get enough groceries to get through til payday this would make a considerable difference.

Anyone connecting the dots how this could lower the abortion rate?

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Vote Yes Clueless On Rape Statistics

Yesterday it was Leslee Unruh of Vote Yes for 6 being given the smackdown by a Mpls. reporter about emergency contraception. Leslee claimed 14 days, the reporter shocked and stumped Leslee by informing her the FDA says 72 hours maximum.

Today's proof of the utter cluelessness of Vote Yes and Leslee is this gem from a Times UK article.
"One of her posters is of a girl who was raped, refused the morning-after pill and gave birth to a girl she has no regrets about keeping. Ms. Unruh is proud of her, but does not want to dwell on rape. “It’s so rare anyway,” she says."

Vote Yes and Leslee Unruh really seem to be utterly clueless about their own issues.

South Dakota has the 12th Highest ranking in the U.S. for rape per capita.
"South Dakota’s 40.4 reported Forced Rapes per 100,000 people, ranked the state 12th highest."

"According to criminal investigators and the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), an average of 35 rapes per month were reported on each of three South Dakota reservations: Rosebud, Cheyenne River and Pine Ridge."

"Fire Thunder refers to the large number of unreported rapes on reservations as a "quiet crisis." Half of the 38,000 enrolled members of the tribe are 18 and under. "So we have a high population of childbearing women." She estimated as many as 80 percent of rapes go unreported on the Pine Ridge Reservation."

So to Vote Yes who claim to care about women, having the 12th highest rape per capita ranking is not worth talking about.

Vote Yes Hail Mary Pass: Not So Much

Vote Yes thinks they have a "hail mary" that is going to salvage their floundering campaign that has been plauged with media criticism for false information and infighting within the campaign.

They released a new commercial featuring another rogue doctor. Dr. Patricia Giebink claims to have worked for Planned Parenthood at one time, though this claim has not been verified or proven. Dr. Giebink is now coming out against the ban. This sudden supposed turn of position makes anyone ask the real question. Why would she suddenly change her position?

The only record we can find so far on Dr. Giebink was her testimony against a proposed law in 1997 on late term abortion. During that legislative session she is listed as appearing on her own and not as a representative of Planned Parenthood.

South Dakota being South Dakota, nothing goes unnoticed and in a state of less than 755,000 finding out is easier than a largely populated state.

This was commented over at SD War College:
"Patti Giebink, daughter of long-retired Sioux Falls orthopedic surgeon Robert Giebink changed her position on abortion after being "born again." She is the sister-in-law of Mary Ann Giebink, not her sister.

The Giebink family is a very interesting study in contrasts between the left and right, religion and secularism, "hinged" and "unhinged," morality and immorality, not unlike the polarization of American society in microcosm, with the line of im/morality sometimes fuzzily drawn (as is often the case) in places that might be unexpected to some

It is a common tactic of anti-abortion groups and related fundamentalist churches to specifically target and pressure doctors who perform pregnancy terminations to join their churches in order to convert them and get them to publicly reject their former life.

It appears pretty clear that Patricia Giebink fell off the reality train somewhere along the line.

Wed. November 1st - Rally Against The Ban - Be There!

The big rally in March was a great success. Be there Wednesday!

Make sure you take the time to stop by this rally. The last rally was a great success and kick off for the petition drive that got us were we are today.

Join the South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families at a Rally to kick off our Get Out The Vote efforts in the final week before the election. You will hear inspirational testimonies from leaders in our state along with ordinary citizens just like us who believe the legislature has simply gone too far.

Join us at the rally and help demonstrate your support for repealing the abortion ban!

WHAT: Election Rally to Repeal the Abortion Ban

WHEN: Wednesday, November 1st; 12:00 noon -- 1:00pm

WHERE: 400 block of S. Phillips Avenue
Federal Courthouse in Sioux Falls
Corner of 9th and St. Joseph
Rapid City

Join us over the lunch hour -- you won't regret it. This event will be jam-packed with your friends and neighbors all working towards the common goal of defeating Referred Law 6!

Friday - Don't Forget Stand Up Against The Ban

Don't forget tomorrow is stand up against the ban visibility.

Where: SD Healthy Families office 109. N. Main Ave (downtown Sioux Falls corner of 9th & Main)
meet up there for more info on where to go.

When: Be there at 4pm sharp

Why: Let's show everyone that South Dakota does not support restrictive and dangerous laws!

Contact SDHF for more information

Vote Yes Can't Get People To Come To Its Events

There has been some debate, ok some whining by the Vote Yes people because the media printed the attendance figures of their recent Vote Yes rallies featuring Alan Keyes and other Christian Nation zealots.

Mrs. Ellis posted details over at Clean Cut Kid, that the Aberdeen paper's figures upset the Vote Yes people. The well known to be conservative leaning Aberdeen paper stated that only 250 people showed up for the Vote Yes rally featuring Keyes.

Northern Valley Beacon posted the other day that a recent event at NSU. The event about the abortion ban sponsored by United Campus Ministries had asked a number of people on the opposition to speak but all declined. The event featuring anti-abortion speakers drew exactly 3, yes 3 people beyond the anti-abortion supporters there to speak.

Now our impression of Aberdeen is that it is not the hotbed of liberalism in South Dakota. They could not draw a crowd for either event.

There have also been reports of coerced sign placement by Vote Yes. Signs are being handed out to parishioners at certain fundamentalist churches in town. There seems to be quite a bit of peer pressure at some churches for the members to post signs or else.

More Unhinged Anti-Abortion Protesters Show Up In Sioux Falls

This is becoming a daily occurance. Another van plastered with home made billboards, the graphic fetus pictures and religious condemnations has shown up in Sioux Falls. This one is a newer van, it has the rear license plate covered up and is not one of the vans previously spotted in Sioux Falls. It had either a Wisconsin or Florida plate on the front.

Just remember that Leslee Unruh and her Jerry Falwell legion of extremists were the ones begging these people to show up. This was well documented in their conference call, where they asked religious extremists to come to South Dakota.

Anti-Abortion Protesters In Sioux Falls Cross The Line

"Outside South Dakota's only abortion clinic, on the west side of Sioux Falls, protesters carry signs with photos of a dismembered fetus and take photos of everyone who enters the Planned Parenthood facility. The pictures will be posted later on a website. "

We found this at the end of another national media outlet piece on the abortion ban.
Even many in the anti-abortion camp find this behavior to be WAY out of line.
This is straight up harassment. The groups that have been hanging out on 41st street
causing trouble have been tied to the First Assembly church across the street, Bound 4 Life, some Wisconsin group of protesters and South Dakota local anti-abortion activists.

Taking pictures of unwilling medical patients that are on private property seems that it would be illegal, at the very least it is quite wrong no matter what the situation.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Rep. Al Novstrup Removes All Doubt About His Character

Al, what a guy! His recent behavior at an event at NSU recently leaves little doubt about the kind of person he is. Is this really what people want representing them in Pierre?

"Staff members of the South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families were invited to speak to the forums, but they declined. They did set up an information table in the lobby of the Union where the forums were to be held. They put up a sign on the table that said:

"The views of the South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families will not be represented here today."

After the afternoon forum, Al Novstrup took it upon himself to remove the sign. As the sign did not advocate anything but merely informed people in the Union that the group would not be speaking, no one can figure why Novstrup did that, other than to put on a demonstration of tyrannical power.

When the noon session was over, Lindsey of the campaign staff approached Novstrup, who had the sign rolled up under his arm, in the lobby and asked if she could have the sign back. Novstrup held it out to her, but when she reached out to take it, he withdrew it and put it back under his arm."

You can read the whole sordid mess and the dismal attendance figures for the anti-choice crusaders here.

The only people who showed up for the event were the speakers for vote yes, a couple of their immediate family members and 1-3 people. Sounds like vote yes is having some problems with support for their issue?

Heppler at SDP : Vote No on 6

South Dakota Politics is well known as a very conservative Republican blog. Heppler posted his opinions on the ballot initiatives. We were honestly very surprised about what side of the fence he fell on many of the issues, he made clear reasoning for his decisions. We are not sure if the others at SDP share his position or not.

Heppler's picks:
On 6: No
On C: No
On E: No
On 4: Yes
On 7: No

His reasoning for no on 6.
"I'm voting no, as I've explained before, because this is bad public policy (not because I support abortions). I don't understand how this law is going to fix the problem. What's at stake here is to reduce abortions, right? Wrong. Banning them won't fix it, it only pushes the problem out of South Dakota. "

Mpls TV Busts Unruh On EC Claims

KARE 11 out of Minneapolis busts Leslee Unruh and Vote Yes on 6 on the emergency contraception claims. They have been repeatedly trying to confuse voters that emergency contraception can be used for up to 10-14 days. The drug manufacturer and FDA say otherwise. KARE corners Leslee and gets her to finally admit there is only a 3 day window on EC. Too bad they had not also cornered her on the recently passed law allowing pharmacists to refuse to dispense it or that only about half of the pharmacies even carry it.

"Leslee Unruh, the founder of Vote Yes for Life, told KARE 11: "The law is not doing anything to harm a woman from going and getting emergency contraception."

In an interview with Unruh, KARE reporter Scott Goldberg pressed Unruh on this point, because her group's suggestion -- that access to the so-called "morning-after" pill is an equal alternative to abortion -- does not square with an analysis by the Food and Drug Administration.

Last year, the FDA's chief of drug research wrote, "There are no clinical data that indicate emergency contraceptive drug products will disrupt a fertilized egg that has already implanted."

In the interview, Goldberg said: "Emergency contraception, Plan B, works within three days of unprotected sex."

Unruh then asked, "Are you sure of that?"

Goldberg said, "According to the FDA."

Unruh shook her head.

Later in the interview, Goldberg said, "It's too late to use emergency contraception after you're pregnant. So this law does, in fact, ban abortion for women who get pregnant as the result of rape or incest. Correct?"

Unruh said, "No. She goes to her medical doctor prior to."

Unruh stressed the words "prior to" and insisted that, prior to the sperm meeting the egg and the fertilized egg implanting itself - and after a woman has been raped or is the victim of incest - she can take advantage of that three-day window in which emergency contraception is most effective."

Creepy Sleepy - Both Sides Of The Abortion Ban

Creepy Sleepy has podcasts featuring both sides of the abortion ban. First they interviewed "Pastor Dan" in podcast #74 and then in #75 they spoke with someone from the SD Healthy Families campaign.

#75 asked some basic questions on the facts of the ban and is interesting if your looking for SDHF's stance on the issues or the facts they are providing to prove their position.

#74 is a bit uh, interesting. The guys from Creepy Sleepy were respectful and gave the pastor the chance to fully explain his position on the ban. What became very apparent in the interview was that support of the ban was completely and totally guided by these people's view of religion and the bible. The pastor's answer in a nutshell to any opposing viewpoint or person was that they should read the bible and convert to his way of thinking. We found that very informative.
Some other portions of the interview that proved enlightening was when they asked pastor Dan about how the conservative churches help women and babies. They asked if the churches provided any sort of support for these women and children. After some stammering he replied that they send money to crisis pregnancy centers. Most people already know that crisis pregnancy centers provide no ongoing support of any kind to women and children and their only function is to coerce women into not having an abortion, even using false information to do so. Something else Creepy Sleepy asked the pastor was how he felt about the idea of a convicted rapist having paternity rights to a child that a rape victim was forced to give birth to under the law. The pastor thought about it for a minute, found it problematic but they dismissed it as no big deal and went on to call the ban "very good".

Wow, just wow. This supposed pastor seemed to not have any real issue with women being forced to deal with visitation and all the other face to face issues that go with custody and such in family law with the criminal who raped them.

This is the kind of disregard for women and mentality held by the people supporting the ban.

Media Details Unruh & Vote Yes Criminal Behavior

This one is a must read. Talk to Action has a expose on Leslee Unruh, her non-profit groups and Vote Yes on 6's criminal behavior.

We we just want to reassure Leslee that orange jumpsuits will be in fashion this Spring. We'll send you some matching tangerine lipgloss.

SD Pastors Urge No On 6

The Rapid City Journal today has a piece on South Dakota pastors who are urging voters to reject the abortion ban.

"Ministers from Episcopal, Methodist, Presbyterian, UCC and Lutheran churches read from their denominations’ positions on abortion rights. The national governing bodies of those five denominations have taken official positions that abortion should be legal and safe, something that may surprise voters who are under the misconception that all Christians support a ban on abortions, Stewart said. Some Christian, Jewish and Muslim religious authorities believe that abortion is permissible in the early weeks of a pregnancy and that an abortion may be called for to save the health or life of a pregnant woman, the abortion-rights clergy stated."

(photo from the RCJ)

Stand Up Against The Abortion Ban - Friday

Be there or be square!
If you're against Measure 6 (the abortion ban/HB 1215) join others and let your voice be heard!

When: Friday October 27th (this Friday) at 4pm
Where: SD Healthy Families Office
109 N. Main - Sioux Falls
(meet there to find out where to go and get information)
What: Join others to show your support for overturning the abortion ban

If you have questions or need more information contact SDHF

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Even More Anti-Abortion Protestors Showing Up In Sioux Falls

More of the ugly protestors are showing their faces and some of the out of state ones have come back. The street protestors with the big posters of stillborn fetuses are back out on 41st St by the Planned Parenthood building. These people are directly across the street from Roosevelt High School. How nice of them to subject the students there to this almost every day.

The beat up out of state pick-up truck full of nasty billboards is also back. This appears to be the same person who showed up about mid-summer causing problems for businesses and parking in front of the Argus Leader. If people remember our coverage of this person back then they will remember that this person has made a career out of purposely causing trouble and has a very long criminal record to go with it.

The information on the guy with the truck in Sioux Falls:
Ronald Brock has a long history of violence and purposely causing trouble on a number of issues.

He is advocating murdering doctors as a form of abortion protest.
He was active in the disturbance and protest over Terri Schiavo.
He was protesting to support Judge Roy Moore's battle over the 10 commandments.
He supports hate and discrimination against homosexuals.
He has been arrested 80 times and claims to have spent 3 of the last 6 years in jail or prison.
He also ties to Operation Rescue and Troy Newman another protester constantly breaking the law. Newman has a long record of illegal activity, clinic violence and IRS violations.
Brock was also arrested along with some Operation Rescue activists during a disturbance turned violent at an Episcopalian church in Mississippi when they hit an abortion rights supporter with a car.
He also was in trouble at Virginia Tech for violating University rules about demonstrations.
"Two trucks circled the Drillfield showing pictures of aborted fetuses, the Ten Commandments and a Sept. 11 image of the World Trade Center. The Life and Liberty Ministries group consisted of about 20 people including children as young as 10. Virginia Tech Police Chief Debra Duncan said the group came onto campus grounds without the proper authorization from events planning and had no clearance to display posters on the grounds or to pass out literature about their cause."
Then there was this incident where they protested a school for not allowing anti-homosexual hate t-shirts on campus. In his own words his goal was to cause a disturbance and get arrested.

This is what Leslee Unruh has brought to our state.

Anti-Abortion Group Working Sioux Falls College Campuses

We have received reports of a group handing out literature to students on Sioux Falls college campuses. The literature is misleading and directs students to go to a website that contains more false information and graphic images. These images are well known to be inaccurate and are of extremely late term pregnancies either terminated for fetal deformities incompatible with life, or stillborn. The group passing out this graphic misinformation to students is associated with an evangalist named Chris Lascelles. This individual is associated with a group called Youth With A Mission.
Make of it what you will, but just more unwelcome out of state fanatics courtesy of the vote yes people.

Yankton Paper: Reject Abortion Ban

The Yankton Press and Dakotan has come out and urged voters to reject the abortion ban. The paper claimed the ban goes too far. The article is somewhat long but a very thought out argument and worth the read. This statement from the article sums up the paper's opinion.

"Frankly, an abortion ban won't save many lives. It will force people to look elsewhere or turn to dangerous back-room methods that could prove fatal. What's needed instead are such things as better sex education, spiritual counseling, more domestic guidance and other approaches that will remove the motivations that drive abortion. Address these matters instead, and abortion may someday become a rarely-used procedure.

Referred Law No. 6 is not a solution. It eradicates reasonable exceptions for a truly profound procedure and generates serious health care questions. Something better and safer is needed. That's why voters should reject No. 6.

Add the Yankton paper to the growing list of sources rejecting the ban. So far we have not found one public official or media outlet telling people TO vote for this mess.

Take Action - Show Up Friday!

Tired of not feeling like your views are not being heard on the abortion ban issue? Get out on Friday and join others to show your support for overturning the ban and voting NO on 6.

When: Friday October 27th (this Friday) at 4pm
Where: SD Healthy Families Office
109 N. Main - Sioux Falls
(meet there to find out where to go and get information)
What: Join others to show your support for overturning the abortion ban

If you have questions or need more information contact SDHF

VY on 6 Lawyer Admits Ban Has No Exceptions

Kevin Wooster who seems to be the lone journalist in South Dakota these days has more real reporting on the exceptions tango going on with Voteyesforbackalleyabortion.

Matt McCaulley, the former legislator who had a direct hand in drafting the law and is the current lawyer for the vote yes campaign clearly admitted the ban has no exceptions. Nobody could get an abortion in South Dakota for any reason other than death. He then proceeded to try to make the standard excuses of why its not so bad after all, really, it has some nice door prizes - Oh look! A puppy! At least McCaulley is capable of separating the fact from the fiction even though he presented both to Wooster.

"Sioux Falls lawyer Matt McCaulley spoke the words that other supporters of Referred Law 6 have avoided: The ban would not allow abortions for pregnant women with health problems or those known to be pregnant from rape and incest, unless the procedure was needed to save their lives, he said Monday."

"There is no provision in Referred Law 6 that allows a doctor to abort the child to help the woman’s health,” said McCaulley, a former state legislator and current legal counsel for, the lead organization promoting the law."

"McCaulley also said there is no exception in Referred Law 6 that would allow a victim of rape or incest to get an abortion after she has been determined to be pregnant. Women could use emergency contraception before a pregnancy could be detected, however, he said." (our note. That is 24-72 hours you have)

"The law, which is up for public vote on the Nov. 7 general-election ballot, does indeed make it clear that a doctor may perform an abortion on a pregnant woman only when the procedure is needed to save her life, he said."

Any questions?
They have been outright lying in their ads. But that is a given for most people.
So will the rest of the media pick up on this before election day and make sure the voters have the facts straight before they decide how to vote?

Monday, October 23, 2006

Watertown Speaks - Local Comments From The Straw Poll

We didn't catch all of the comments the paper posted with the straw poll results at first. They are more interesting than the straw poll itself. What is even more interesting is that these comments are coming from locals in a mostly conservative rural town in South Dakota.

" Abortion is between a woman and her doctor. Not Roger Hunt - not Brock Greenfield! Not the Catholics!"

"If men became pregnant, abortion would not be an issue."

"I find it amazing that the “pro-life” people (most of whom supported the Bush war and capital punishment) are willing to embroil the state in a multi-million dollar lawsuit that will take money away from children's education and welfare."

"The abortion issue should not be a ballot issue. This should be an individual decision between a person, God & their doctor."

"#11 - Should make clear exceptions to incest, rape, etc."

"I'm in my 70s and the last legislative session was the biggest joke I have ever seen. Maybe it's time for a party change."

"11 ballot issues = failure of legislature and governor."

Watertown Paper Straw Poll Show Ban Defeated

Progressive on the Prairie mentioned the Watertown Public Opinion Newspaper's straw poll.
This is what Progressive on the Prairie had to say about the straw poll and it's track record:
"or years (if not decades), the Watertown Public Opinion has run a "Straw Ballot" on election issues and candidates. The ballot is printed in the paper and "voters" have to mail or bring in an original, not a photocopy. It has been highly accurate over that time. While the Straw Ballot may not nail the percentages, it has been an excellent barometer of the ultimate outcome on both issues and races."

#11. Referred Law 6 - To ban abortions in South Dakota, the only exception is to prevent the death of the mother.

45% Yes

55% No

It's narrow but it's still a win. Now take into consideration that Watertown is generally not as progressive as say, Sioux Falls, Rapid City or Vermillion. The abortion ban fared worse than some of the other morality legislation in Watertown. So does that mean its not playing well even in a conservative rural town?

The Abortion Ban Debate - In A Nutshell

Some people have asked why you don't see tons of public propaganda for Voting No on 6. It's not because people do not support it. When you talk to people most are taken aback by the idea of the ban and are not happy about having the anti-abortion people parading around there state. As this commenter over at CCK pointed out, many people opt to not advertise their opinion out of concern that they will be attacked or their property will be vandalized. Considering the behavior of the anti-abortion activists in South Dakota (not to mention out of state ones) there is room for people to maybe be a bit aprehensive. The commenter worked at Planned Parenthood and the comments are from events that are not recent. This means the stories are not recent events done by out of state protestors. This is the day to day behavior of certain South Dakotans that want you to vote for their ban.

"I don't agree with any type of vandalism to any type of property. However, I'd ask you to consider two points, perhaps to reconsider this rant or perhaps to allow you a bit of empathy for the pro-choice people of this state.
1. I worked at Planned Parenthood in Sioux Falls for a year. During that one year, I had my car hit with paintballs, we had two individuals shit in front of the door to the clinic (caught 'em on tape with their pants down) and we had our parking lot and front door spray painted with typical pro-life propaganda. The spray painting was on my last day-- what a nice send-off. Those are just a few examples, something happened almost weekly.
2. You will most likely not see a plethora of Vote No on 6 signs-- not because people aren't going to overwhelmingly Vote No (because look at all the houses without the Vote Yes signs) but because some people are, probably rightfully so, intimiated and/or scared to put up signs. Some reasons given to turning down the Vote No signs--afraid of: property damage, car getting keyed, pets harmed, and/or neighbors approaching them with the pro-life propaganda. Just remember-- these people are still going to vote No on 6.
So before you go whining to the press about some political signs getting damaged, think about this-- how'd you like to go to work and have a big pile of steaming human feces in front of the door? Or feeling so intimidated that you're afraid your dog will get poisoned if you put up a damn yard sign? Just a couple of contextual points. This is what the pro-choice people of South Dakota face on a DAILY basis-- not just when election time rolls around

SD Legislators Tell Media - The Ban Has No Exceptions

Clean Cut Kid just posted this today. We are posting the entire letter, it seems to have impacted CCK's bandwidth capacity.

October 23, 2006

To Members of the Media:

We write today to set the record straight about a patently false statement being broadcast by the Vote Yes for Life Political Committee’s latest political advertisement. The advertisement claims that Referred Law Six “does provide exceptions for the life and the health of the mother.” As is well known, and has been widely reported, there is no exception for the health of the mother in the ban passed by the legislature. We believe this patently false statement is designed to deliberately mislead the people of South Dakota about the restrictive ban passed this year by the South Dakota Legislature.

Vote Yes is also claiming there are exceptions for women who have become pregnant as a result of rape and incest. The only exception in this abortion ban is to prevent the death of a woman. Deliberately misleading the public does not lend to the integrity of a debate the voters moved to put on November’s ballot.

We offered amendments to allow exceptions for rape and incest. All of those amendments were rejected.

When this bill was being debated in the legislature, we authored two amendments to add a health exception to the ban. Both of those amendments failed, however, and the bill was signed into law without a health exception.

The facts about the health exception are indisputable.

There are no exceptions for abortions if a woman’s health is at risk:

On February 9, 2006 the South Dakota House of Representatives debated HB 1215. During the course of that debate, Representative Dale Hargens offered an amendment to provide for an exception for abortions performed to protect the health of the pregnant woman. That amendment failed 27 to 41, with two members absent. Later that day, the abortion ban passed the House without a health exception.

Later that month, on February 22, 2006, the bill moved to the floor of the South Dakota Senate. During that debate, Senator Dave Knudson offered an amendment to provide an exception to HB 1215 for instances in which a woman’s health is in jeopardy. That amendment failed 13 to 22. Following the vote, the Senate passed the abortion ban and the bill was sent to the Governor for his signature.

The Argus Leader reported, “The Senate also defeated a proposed amendment to insert an exception to allow an abortion to protect the health of a pregnant woman.” [Myers/Woster, Sioux Falls Argus Leader, 2/23/06]. According to the Aberdeen American News, the Senate “refused to accept an amendment for exceptions regarding the health of the mother that was offered by (Senator) Knudson.” [Mercer, Aberdeen American News, 2/23/06]. The health policy correspondent from National Public Radio noted, “There's an exception for the life of the pregnant woman, but not for her health.” [Rovner, NPR, 2/28/06].

The South Dakota Section of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists reports “[t]he ban includes no exception to protect a woman’s health,” and adds that “where a condition is not life-threatening but compromises or worsens a woman’s health, physicians’ hands are tied by this broad ban.”

Attorney General Larry Long says in the state’s “2006 Ballot Questions” guide, the only exception is for abortion performed by a physician “to prevent the death of the pregnant woman.”

There are no exceptions for abortions if a woman or girl becomes pregnant from rape or incest:

On February 9th, 2006 during House debate on HB1215, Rep. Hargens moved that HB 1215 be amended allow termination of pregnancy which was a result of rape or incest. There was no debate. Rep. Mark Willadsen moved for that motion to be tabled, no debate was allowed, and the amendment failed.

Rep. Hennies moved on that same day to amend HB1215 be amended to allow termination of pregnancy which may have been a result of rape or incest. The only debate allowed on this amendment came from Rep Keri Weems and she stated the following: “Thank you Mr. Speaker. Well, this amendment, 1215RB is more liberal than the previous amendment because it includes the words ‘which may have been the result of rape or incest’ I urge you to defeat this amendment and pass the bill. Thank you.” Rep. Larry Rhoden moved to table the amendment and in a roll call vote the motion passed 42 to 25 (3 excused).

Later that month on February 22, 2006 Sen. Stan Adelstein offered an amendment to allow an exception to allow termination of pregnancy as a result of rape or incest. Sen. Knudson requested a roll call vote and the amendment was rejected 14 to 21.

A position statement on HB 1215 from the South Dakota Section of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists states, “The ban includes no exception for rape victims, even though an estimated one in six US women has been the victim of attempted or completed rape.”

The South Dakota Section of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists also states, “The ban includes no exception for victims of incest, often girls and young teens.”

Everyone involved in this debate in Pierre knows that the proponents of HB 1215 were adamant that no health exception be included in the ban. They actively worked to defeat our amendments and other efforts to include a health exception in the ban. Now, with public polling showing the ban likely to be overturned in November, they’ve become desperate and resorted to lying.

We want to be clear: There is no health exception in the abortion law South Dakotans will vote on in November. There are no exceptions for women who become pregnant as a result of a violent sex crime. The sponsors of the bill had an opportunity to add health, rape and incest exceptions on February 9, 2006 and again on February 22, 2006. Not only did they choose not to include a these exceptions, they actively worked to defeat our efforts to add these exceptions into the bill.

We can agree to disagree on HB 1215, but we cannot condone any political entity engaging in outright lies on this, or any other issue in our state. The people of South Dakota deserve better. We urge the Vote Yes for Life Political Committee to stop running their false advertisements and misleading the public on this complex issue. We encourage and expect honest debate.


Thomas Hennies
Casey Murschel
Clarence Kooistra
Elaine Roberts
J.P. Duniphan
Stan Adelstein

Kick That Horse In The Ass

We don't know who Donald Pay is but he summed up the current debate on the abortion ban very well and he is quite right in his determination of what needs to happen in these last two weeks before the election.
"I always think the best thing is for your adversaries to hang themselves with their own words, and the pro-1215 side has spew lots of controdictions.The pro-1215 side has put the noose around their necks, but I’m not sure the anti-1215 side is up to the task of smacking the pony on the rump and completing the hanging.The best thing the anti-1215 side could do is create lots of doubt in the last few weeks. The few people not decided or swayable on this are people who aren’t heavily invested in the issue. Put the contradictory comments in an ad and say, “Now the SUPPORTERS are backing away from this BAD LAW. Either THEY don’t know what it means, or their LYING. It’s a BAD law.” Comment by Donald Pay

Abortion Ban Agitates South Dakota

Another story in the national news wires (it was in multiple big city papers).

We are trying to not post large articles in the blog the next two weeks as things get busier.
One thing we have noticed in the ongoing media coverage is the commentary from outside the state that South Dakota is an intensely private culture and non confrontational.

There is one portion of the article though, that we felt compelled to post directly:
" Dr. Marvin Buehner, an obstetrician in Rapid City, says the law would tie his hands when treating patients with serious medical complications.
Buehner recounted the case of a 38-year-old woman who was diagnosed with rectal cancer at the same time her 13-week pregnancy was confirmed. "The oncologist recommended radiation to the pelvis and immediate chemotherapy, which would have been fatal to the fetus," he said.
Buehner said the woman, whom he described as "pro-life," agonized over the dilemma but ultimately decided to abort "because she felt she had an obligation to her other children." Had the ban been in effect, Buehner said, he could have gone to jail for terminating the pregnancy.
"I would have had to prove my termination prevented her death," he said, "and I can't do that."
A small group of physicians who support the abortion ban argue that the law allows them to treat a pregnant cancer patient. The statute says medical treatment that results in the "accidental" death of a fetus is not a violation.
That makes Buehner furious. If you treated that woman's cancer without terminating the pregnancy first, he said, "you'd have a dead fetus in an irradiated pelvis in an immune system compromised by chemotherapy. So when she starts to hemorrhage from her miscarriage, emptying her uterus will be fraught with peril

More National Media Blasts Vote Yes

Add this to the long list of national media blasting the ban supporters.

Shelly Lewis: Lying about "Abortion Hurts Women".

Vote Yes - Still Refusing To Correct Inflated Numbers

Voteyesforbackalleyabortion is still refusing to come clean about their grossly inflated claims of support. They were claiming 120 doctors supported their cause, yet can only produce about 20.
They were claiming a network of 400 churches through the Witherspoon network yet have not provided a single stitch of proof that any such number of churches support their cause.

So if they had such wide support for their crusade why are they unable to verify their claims. Maybe because they made the entire thing up?

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Tired Of The Lies? Do Something About It!

Help debunk the desperate lies of the harsh religious extremists trying to keep hold of their abortion ban. Get this commercial on TV as much as possible. It costs around $200 to run a TV spot. Donate whatever you can and email SD Healthy Families and tell them you want your donation to go to putting that ad on TV. Were challenging all of the SD bloggers to do the same and post this request to your blog this week.

No On 6 Yard Signs

Here's a cool idea. You can print off your own No On 6 sign to put in your window at home, work, school, your car.
If you have not heard No On 6 yard signs are in. You can contact SD Healthy Families to pick one up.

Ignore The Rhetoric - Look At The Evidence

SD Straight Talk went back and found the original debates from the Legislature on HB1215.

There is the evidence that they shot down all exceptions to the ban. There is also the Attorney General's explanation on the ballot telling people there are no exceptions in this ban.

Tell at least one other person, send them the post from SD Straight Talk, send them the RCJ editorial. Just make sure people know the truth about the ban and know that they are being lied to by religious fundamentalists who care nothing about women or this state.

Rapid City Journal Rejects The Abortion Ban

The RCJ is quickly becoming the more relevant paper in the state as they at least stick their neck out and discuss the important issues. The Argus increasingly panders to the angry religious right or avoids the issues all together.

The RCJ editorial board came out against the ban and also rejected all of the excuses the Vote Yes side has used to try to convince people that the ban is a good idea.

"There are few issues on which the dividing lines are more clearly drawn and the opposing sides further apart than the abortion issue. Those occupying the middle ground usually favor allowing abortion with restrictions. Anyone could see that HB1215, the law to ban most abortions in South Dakota, would create turmoil because it discarded all exceptions except one - to save the life of the mother. On that basis, we argued unsuccessfully against it becoming law. We now see the results. South Dakota has become the national battleground for abortion rights. This is precisely the battle that opponents of abortion wanted to fight when they sponsored HB1215. Their goal has always been to overturn Roe vs. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court decision that established a woman's right to seek an abortion legally."

"We opposed HB1215 on the grounds that it didn't include exceptions for rape and incest. Our review of abortion records found that just 23 of 814 abortions performed in 2004 were because the woman was a victim of rape or incest. That's 2.8 percent of all abortions done in the state. Even if HB1215 had included exceptions for rape and incest, it still would have been the most restrictive abortion law in the country."

"The reason for not including exceptions for rape and incest is because only a law without exceptions (other than to save the mother) had a reasonable chance at directly challenging Roe vs. Wade.
Is it South Dakota's mission to overturn Roe? Can we afford to carry the fight all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court

"It remains our view that HB1215 goes too far in restricting abortion and that South Dakota can't afford to carry water for the national campaign to overturn Roe vs. Wade.
Our position is a No vote on Referred Law 6

Add the RCJ to the list of groups and influential people who have rejected this ban.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

People Tell Their Stories About How The Ban Would Devistate Lives

These two stories by local residents in response to a letter to the editor at the Argus leader really hit home about the devistating impact this abortion ban would have on families in South Dakota.

Unfortunately, in reality the decision is not just that easy.
In June my wife and I were ecstatic to learn that we were expecting identical twin boys. Soon we would be faced with an agonizing decision that would bring us face to face with the ramification of SD’s proposed abortion ban.

One of our babies was very sick as blood supply restrictions had resulted in development of his brain at the expense of his tiny body. His brother was doing better, however, his heart was deteriorating as he was pumping blood for both babies.
Without intervention there was a small (<> "

I'm really glad that the world is so black and white for you. For many, it isn't.
Let's say that there's a mother of 4 children who receives devestating news: she has cancer. At the same time, she also discovers she is pregnant. Since Referred Law 6 prevents administering any chemical which could lead to the death of the fetus, she could be denied chemotherapy. This is a huge gamble, since early treatment is crucial when it comes to treating cancer. I'm sure you would try to tell me that that falls under the exception, but there are many who would say "Well, people survive cancer all the time! You're not in any [i]immediate[/i] danger." Referred Law 6 could ultimately make this family motherless.
Right here in South Dakota, there are also many women who are on medications to treat a variety of illnesses, from heart disease to depression to schitzophrenia. These drugs allow women to lead normal, healthy lives, and even to raise children. They can, however, be deadly to a fetus. Under Referred Law 6, since there is no exception for the health of the mother, and none of these conditions are immediately life threatening, a woman could be forced to go off of these medications, since they could result in birth defects or a miscarriage. Meanwhile, going off of these medicines can have catastrophic results for the woman's life.
It's too bad you want to make a difficult situation even harder.

Vote Yes Doctors Say They Won't Give Women Emergency Contraception

Clean Cut Kid also had this gem of information.

Dr. William Waltz, one of the doctors in the Vote Yes TV as claiming there were exceptions for rape and incest victims. The ad endorses emergency contraception for rape and incest victims.

But their doctors are saying they won't give women emergency contraception.

"asked him whether he'd grant a patient's request to fill a prescription for emergency contraception, [Dr Waltz] said he wouldn't--because he wouldn't want to participate in the destruction of an embryo."

KELO: Vote Yes Providing False Information

This is significant. KELO has a long history of playing favorites to the religious right. They do at least take the integrity of the election seriously. Kelo has debunked a number of claims by Vote Yes including some new ones.
(Hat tip to CCK)

"The narrator of the ad reads, “We’re all doctors in South Dakota. Science now proves that life begins at conception. Over 96 percent of abortions performed in South Dakota are for birth control."

Sponsors of the ad say that statistic came from a report on abortion by the South Dakota Department of Health. So we pulled that report and added the numbers ourselves -- not including abortions performed because of rape or incest, the mother's health, or those in the "other" or "un-answered" categories. We came up with 85.5 percent, not more than 96 percent like you hear in the ad.

We contacted the Vote Yes For Life campaign for a response to our findings. A spokesperson says the group stands behind the ad. She says they included the "other" and "un-answered" percentages from the report in their count to come up with the claim that more than 96 percent of abortions in South Dakota are for birth control reasons
. "

"The next major claim in the ad involves whether there's an exception for the health of the mother. The ad says yes.

"This measure does provide exception for the life and health of the mother,” the narrator says.

But the wording of House Bill 1215 does not include the word "health" with regard to the exception.

The bill reads, "No licensed physician who performs a medical procedure designed or intended to prevent the death of a pregnant mother is guilty of violating section 2 of this Act."

Under this wording, an abortion can only be performed if the woman's life is in immediate danger—not simply for other health reasons. This is also outlined in the Attorney General's ballot explanation, which states, “…unless the person is a licensed physician performing a medial procedure to prevent the death of a pregnant woman.”

"The ad continues, "And the morning-after pill may be taken in any event, including sexual assault or incest."

While this statement is true, it needs to be put in context. Many medical experts agree emergency contraception must be taken within 72 hours after sex and it’s not necessarily available in all cases of sexual assault and incest because pharmacists and physicians in South Dakota are not required to administer the drug in any circumstance

But wait. Notice what we bolded from the KELO report above. Vote Yes tried to tell a member of the media the outright nonsense about emergency contraception and how long it can be used.

"Vote Yes supporters claim the morning after pill does provide an option for victims of rape and incest, also adding that they believe emergency contraceptives can be effectively used as long as 14 days after sex."

They have been pushing this little gem of misinformation on various boards and in person for months. KELO debunked it, though more politely than maybe they could have.

Lets solve this once and for all that they are blatantly lying about this.

From the FDA website:
6. How should Plan B be administered?

Plan B should be taken orally as soon as possible and within 72 hours of unprotected sex. The second tablet should be taken 12 hours after the first tablet. Data shows Plan B is more effective the sooner treatment is started following unprotected sex.

From the drug manufacturer's website:
Plan B® should be taken within 3 days (72 hours) of unprotected sex and can reduce the risk of pregnancy by 89%. But the sooner you take it the more effective it will be.

Friday, October 20, 2006

SD Healthy Families Has A New TV Ad Out

They have a new TV ad out. It uses some of the orginal footage from their previous ad but clearly points out the lack of exceptions in the ban. It also pointed out the opposition to the ban from the South Dakota OB GYN Assoc.

They did a very good job of clearly addressing the points and dispelling the misinformation from the other side. They did it without becoming negative or nasty.

ABC News: Ban Has No Exceptions, Doomed To Fail

ABC news has a look at the current fight over the abortion ban. It is interesting to see the take from national news outlets that are not constrained by local pressure.

"The law they're fighting for bans abortions in all cases except when the life of the mother is at stake. There are no exceptions for rape, no exceptions for incest, no exceptions for fetal deformity. No exceptions."

" The law's advocates say it most certainly does allow exceptions for rape and incest, though the words "rape" and "incest" cannot be found anywhere in the legal language. And a fair reading of the law's wording leaves their assertions open to challenge, to say the least."

David Kranz, a columnist for the Sioux Falls Argus Leader, says the strategy has been clear for a long time.
"In my opinion, I think it was just put together to challenge Roe v. Wade," Kranz says. But what makes this an interesting contest is you can find a lot of people in South Dakota who call themselves pro-life but who oppose this ban on abortion. David Volk, a former Republican state treasurer, is one of them.
"I think it's going to be defeated, and I hope it is," he says."
"I think they passed the wrong bill, and I think because of that they can actually hurt the pro-life movement," Volk says."

New England Journal Of Medicine Shows Ban Without Health Exception Is Dangerous

The New England Journal of Medicine has some good examples in a recent article that expose the lengths seriously ill women would have to go to when facing a health crisis in South Dakota under the new ban.

"In the United States, nearly 20 percent of hospital beds are in facilities with religious affiliations, most of which prohibit physicians from providing abortions.2 According to the Guttmacher Institute, although nationwide about 1 in 14 abortions is sought for health reasons, only two hospitals in Nebraska offer pregnancy terminations, and they do so only under rare circumstances, such as intrauterine fetal death; each of these hospitals performs fewer than 10 pregnancy terminations per year. Nevertheless, in 2004, women from many other states traveled to Nebraska for abortions — at Carhart's clinic. Occasionally, when a hospital refuses, Carhart is asked to terminate a pregnancy that threatens a woman's health. In a recent case, a woman with severe pregnancy-associated renal failure traveled 200 miles by ambulance for an abortion. She arrived with her hospital identification bracelet and an intravenous line in place, underwent the procedure, and was shipped back to her hospital bed."

"Similar events have occurred in many other states. In 1998, the Louisiana State University Medical Center in Shreveport refused to provide an abortion for Michelle Lee, a woman with cardiomyopathy who was on the waiting list for a heart transplant, despite her cardiologist's warning that the pregnancy might kill her. Hospital policy dictated that to qualify for an abortion, a woman's risk of dying had to be greater than 50 percent if her pregnancy was carried to term; a committee of physicians ruled that Lee did not meet this criterion. Since her cardiomyopathy made an outpatient abortion too dangerous, she traveled 100 miles to Texas by ambulance to have her pregnancy terminated. "

This has been brought up many times about the ban, there is nothing in the ban language that states the severity of the condition or probability of death that would qualify a woman for a pregnancy termination under the ban. The law is horribly vague leaving doctors not able to interpret the law.

Vote Yes - The 120 Imaginary Physicians

So when will someone call out Vote Yes on their current outright lie? They have been claiming they have 120-150 supposed doctors supporting their cause. They have yet to prove it. No proclamation of these doctors, no anything.

Why? Because the do not exist. This is an outright brazen lie and the media must call them on this.

They have about 23 doctors who have publicly stated they support the ban. They do not have 120.
When will the media call them on this outright lie? It took weeks for someone to finally grow a spine and ask the real questions on the TV commercial.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

National Blogs Slam Vote Yes On 6 For More Dirty Tricks

Vote yes is getting another beating in the media for even more dirty tricks.
Source 1
Source 2

More on the deceptive TV ads, people are calling them on this left and right.

Claiming in a mailing that there is an exception for rape and incest.

Destroying literature of candidates that don't support their ban and replacing it with their own.

Harassing people at churches that don't publicly support their ban.

A bogus website intended to confuse people into thinking it was the SD Healthy Families

Placing their signs on property without permission or on government property in violation of the law. (We have seen so many violations just around Sioux Falls that we have lost count)

Anti-Choice Protesters Dress Up As Roaches

Troy Newman of Operation Rescue, an anti-abortion group with ties to Vote Yes on 6, Leslee Unruh and Gov. Mike Rounds is in the news. Some may remember Newman, who was out in Pierre during the legislative session pushing for the ban.

Newman and another man dressed up as cockroaches to intentionally disrupt a political debate between Gov. Kathleen Sebelius and her Republican challenger, Sen. Jim Barnett down in Kansas.

Make sure you remind people that this is the character of the people behind the ban.

No On 6 - Yard Signs Are Here!

Are you tired of seeing those yes on 6 signs all over town?

Many people have expressed their frustration with only seeing one side's signs out.
Now you can do something about it.

Get your own Vote NO on 6 - No Exceptions for rape, incest or health yard sign.

Yard signs are ready to go in Sioux Falls. Other cities should be getting theirs soon. Call Planned Parenthood at 605-361-5100 to get your own sign or to volunteer to put them up.

Don't forget Words of Choice, a benefit theatre production of powerful stories of men, women and the right to choose. All proceeds go to benefit pro choice activites in South Dakota.

Friday October 20, 7 pm -- Sioux Falls, 200 W. 6th Street, 2d Fl Courtroom, $5 at door

Saturday October 21, 7 pm -- Sioux Falls, Back Alley Theater, Morrison Commons, Augustana, Free (Suggested Donation $5)

Monday October 23, 7 pm -- Brookings, South Dakota Art Museum Auditorium, 1000 Medary Ave. S., $2

Tuesday, October 24, 6:30 pm, Vermillion, USD Farber Hall, Old Main, Free

Thursday, October 26, 7 pm, Rapid City, Dahl Fine Arts Center, 713 7th Ave.. $5

Friday, October 27, 7:30 pm, Rapid City, Dahl Fine Arts Center, 713 7th Ave.. $5

Discord At The Vote Yes On 6 Compound

It is a good thing to have a very diverse network of friends, you never know when it will come in handy.

We have it on good authority that there is much under the table discord among the people at the Vote Yes on 6 campaign. This is not just the low level soccer mom volunteers but some of the more involved people in the campaign. There seems to be a large amount of disagreement on the tactics that are being used and some of the people that are being allowed to be involved with the cause. We were told that most of this was personal frustration and private backbiting while face to face people were being civil and pretending that nothing was wrong. Some of the things cited were anger over the decision to claim the ban had exceptions, people involved in the group that others disliked their stance on the issue or religious affiliation and dislike among some of the alliances with certain groups and people to support the cause. The person we spoke to said they were fairly disillusioned with the whole thing, that the behind people's backs discussions were bothering them and that they were considering withdrawing from the campaign.

Vote Yes on 6 - Falls Back To Tactic Of Last Resort

Voteyesforbackalleyabortion has been receiving a large amount of backlash for their deceptive campaign tactics including the outright claim of health exceptions in the ban.

Today they have swapped for a new TV commercial and abandoned the doctor's claiming health exceptions that don't exist commercial. The new commercial is available on their website.

The new tactic is to use "think of the children", the old tried and true tactic of last resort when losing an argument. The commerical is still very deceptive, though less so than the other two. This one shows a number of ultrasound images of late term fetuses. The commercial speaks about protecting those who can't speak for themselves. They purposely use late term images to attempt to deceive the viewer into thinking that is the "face of the issue". In South Dakota abortions are only performed prior to 9 weeks, at that point the fetus is about the size of a peanut.

What this new stance proves is that they have fallen back to their last available campain tactic. The lies and spin on the exceptions issue has blown up in their face and they have had to abandon that tactic. The reverse feminist tactic claiming that abortion takes away womens rights didn't fool anyone and never gained traction. Their other options left were to adopt a religious reasoning stance. This has already been proven ineffective as the majority of the churches in the state have rejected the ban. Publicly taking a religious based stance would have never worked as it would expose that the ban has religious motivations only, something they try hard to hide. The other option would be to trod out the stillborn fetus pictures, this tactic has already proven to only anger the public more towards them. The option that is left in their bag of tricks is to claim they are advocates for fetuses. This is a very weak leg to stand on and nowhere to go with it. The protector of fetuses tactic has been used before and does not do anything to change minds or highly motivate either camp of the decided.

RCJ Bravely Calls Out Vote Yes On 6 On Deception

Kevin Woster at the RCJ did what the rest of the media is too afraid or lazy to do. They called Vote Yes on 6 out on their deceptive campaign tactics. Woster asked the hard questions and finally someone got some answers.

"Opponents of Referred Law 6 on Wednesday called on television stations statewide to stop running a campaign advertisement they say implies that the proposed abortion ban would allow women to have an abortion to protect their health. Former Republican state Rep. Jan Nicolay of Chester, a co-chairwoman of the South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families, said Wednesday that a television advertisement by the organization includes a “patently false” statement by a doctor implying that there is a health exception in the abortion ban.
In the advertisement, Dr. Mark Rector of Sioux Falls says, “This measure does provide exception for the life and health of the mother.”
There is no language in Referred Law 6, however, allowing abortions for health reasons. The only exception stated in the law to allow abortions is to save a pregnant woman’s life. Because of that, Nicolay contends that Rector’s statement in the advertisement crosses the line between political spin and clear deception.
“For that statement to be made by Dr. Rector — to me, it’s deceiving the people,” she said. “We’re talking about a very deep, personal issue for people who need appropriate medical attention. And they can’t be misled.”

Woster did what a real journalist should, he asked the other side for direct and honest answers.

But when asked if Referred Law 6 would allow a pregnant woman with serious health problems who wasn’t in immediate danger of dying to obtain an intentional abortion, Oliver wouldn’t answer directly

"When asked the same question again, Oliver said: “I’m not going to get backed into a corner for something that hardly even exists. You’re missing the whole point of the discussion. We’re talking about something that’s incredibly rare and that physicians are bound to treat, especially obstetricians. They are bound to treat two patients, not one.”

Oliver, one of the senior members of voteyesforbackalleyabortion clearly tried to avoid the issue and make it go away. He had the opportunity to set the record straight and decided instead to avoid the issue.

There is no language in Referred Law 6 that says a pregnant rape or incest victim could get an abortion, unless it was needed to save her life. There is language that clarifies that women, including rape and incest victims, could still use emergency contraception. Emergency contraception is most effective in the first three days after unprotected sex and is not universally available in South Dakota.

The official ballot explanation about the bill approved by South Dakota Attorney General Larry Long says it would “prohibit any person, at any time, from using any instrument or procedure on a pregnant woman for the specific purpose of terminating her pregnancy, unless the person is a licensed physician performing a medical procedure to prevent the death of the pregnant woman.”

Lindsay Roitman, a campaign manager for the Campaign for Healthy Families, said the statement by Rector in the advertisement shows that Referred Law 6 supporters have realized that the law they celebrated after the Legislature acted last winter is too extreme to win support from South Dakota voters this fall.

“They are resorting to tactics of desperation and dishonesty, just flat-out lying,” Roitman said. ”Leslee Unruh used her son-in-law to deliberately deceive the voters of South Dakota by claiming there is a health exception.”

The story also mentioned that the local TV stations are considering referring the issue of the deceptive ads to their legal counsel to see if they are in violation of FCC law.

* Sidenote, there is also a post over at Clean Cut Kid that the RCJ is going to allow Voteyesforbackalleyabortion to put the election day edition of the paper in a plastic bag that will have "vote yes on 6" on the bag. No matter what candidate or issue it is a newspaper should not be selling such a blatant endorsement on election day. Please make sure you let the RCJ know that this kind of endorsment style advertising is wrong no matter who or what issue is asking to buy it. Does anyone know if the Argus is planning on doing the same?

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Doubt Raised On Zogby Abortion Poll

The group that paid for the recent Zogby poll on the abortion ban, the Christian Defence Coalition has been in trouble for push polling through Zogby in the past.

There was a similar instance of the Christian Defence Coalition doing push polling through Zogby over Terri Schiavo.

There have also been questions about obvious Amendment E push polling through Zogby.
Zogby's response to the push polling in E was that they simply do question polling for clients to "test a message" upon their request and not a direct yes/no on the issue.

The Christian Defence Coalition, Zogby and Vote Yes for Back Alley Abortion have all purposely not disclosed the details of the poll.

Media Exposes Vote Yes Reckless Spending

From this KELO story today.

As of the first of June 2006 Vote Yes had raised $88,000 for their campaign. By the end of that month they has spent almost the entire amount. They spent $87,000 in one month. Remember June? This was the time that little was going on and things like media buys or production had not even started happening yet. This was before Leslee Unruh went begging for Jerry Fallwell to raise a million dollars for her.

This sounds like extremely reckless spending and clearly suspicious since there was little to be spending it on in June.

So what DID Leslee Unruh blow $87,000 on in one month? All we can guess is lobster and cheap cosmetics.

Ms. Magazine Blasts Vote Yes Deceptive Ad

Ms Magazine has a newswire story today about the deceptive TV ads the voteyesforbackalleyabortion people have been using.

The media outside of South Dakota is capable of taking notice of the blatant lies being spread from the Vote Yes fortified compound. So far only ONE media source in South Dakota has had the spine to speak up.

Other States Dealing With Crazy Ballot Issues Too!

NPR's talk of the Nation was discussing various state ballot measures today. One that was mentioned was Missouri's stem cell ban. The "pro-life" far right religious backers of that ban are using the same style of misleading ads they are using in South Dakota to confuse voters.

In Missouri they are trying to convince voters that not banning stem cell research will allow their daughters eggs to be taken from them and they will lose their fertility. The local media exposed the falsehood of this claim as did NPR. These fringe groups have no problem lying to get there way in Missouri or South Dakota. How they are countering the misleading propaganda may be beneficial to doing the same in South Dakota.

The NPR story also touched on Amendment E and the SD abortion ban. We will have more on this later.

False Advertising In Vote Yes On 6 Gets Slammed

The RCJ had an article yesterday where SD Healthy Families publicly denounced the outright lies in the recent TV ad by voteyesforbackalleyabortion.

""The claim by supporters of this ban in recent television advertisements that there is an abortion exception for the health of the mother is patently false," said Dr. Marv Buehner, founder of the South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families, in a prepared statement Monday.
"The abortion ban criminalizes all abortions except to prevent the death of the mother," he continued.
Buehner was referring to a television ad, which can be seen at It features a group of doctors speaking in support of the controversial law

This is the TV ad featuring Leslee Unruh's son in law and two to three people who are not medical doctors in South Dakota yet pose as such while making the false claims of exceptions in the ban.

We still want to know when they are going to admit that their mystery 120 doctors do not exist either.