Police arrested Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell earlier this week and charged him with eight counts of murder. Seven are for practicing illegal abortions in which he allowed viable babies to be born, then cut them open with scissors outside the womb — an action a clinic worker stated Gosnell performed “hundreds” of times. The last was for the death of a 41-year-old refugee from Nepal, Karnamaya Mongar, who received an overdose of Demerol during an abortion in Gosnell’s unsanitary clinic, the ironically named Women’s Medical Society. Although abortion is legal, Gosnell stands accused of violating the federal Born-Alive Infant Protection Act, which forbids children to be murdered after they have been extracted from the birth canal.
When given the opportunity to vote for a measure that would ban this grisly practice in the state of Illinois, then-State Senator Barack Obama voted no.
Gosnell’s “Shop of Horrors”
The practices and conditions inside Kermit Gosnell’s abortion clinics are instructive. The Philadelphia Inquirer described the scene:
Semiconscious, moaning women sat in dirty recliners and on bloodstained blankets. The air reeked of urine from the flea-infested cats permitted to roam the clinic. There was blood on the floor and cat feces on the stairs.
According to investigators, Gosnell used rusty instruments that spread venereal disease among patients.
Several state departments — including the Pennsylvania Department of Health, Department of State, and Department of Public Health — as well as local health care providers turned a blind eye to conditions at the clinic. So did the National Abortion Federation, an organization dedicated to examining abortion facilities. According to Time magazine, the NAF inspector called WMS “the worst abortion clinic she had ever seen,” but “never passed the information on to other authorities.” Sanitary conditions and health violations alone take up a disconcerting amount of District Attorney R. Seth Williams’ 281-page report to the grand jury.
The pollution of the surroundings matched the corruption of the procedure performed. Gosnell reportedly delivered viable children, then cut their spinal cords with scissors — a process he called “snipping.” Clinic worker Tina Brown testified that as a baby squirmed in his hands, Gosnell joked, “that’s what you call a chicken with its head cut off.” He enjoyed cutting off babies’ feet and keeping them in jars on the premises. Other aborted body parts, or whole babies, could be found in jars and cat food containers.
This method of abortion was legal until 2002, when President George W. Bush signed the Born-Alive Infant Protection Act (BAIPA). Barack Obama’s opposition to a similar bill in the Illinois State Senate is perhaps the most shameful mark in his career.
Obama: Pro-Abortion Extremist
As a state senator in Springfield, Barack Obama opposed the Illinois version of the Born Alive Infant Protection Act in 2001, 2002, and 2003. The bill roared to life after Jill Stanek, a nurse at Christ Hospital in Oak Lawn, testified to the gruesome practice in that hospital. Abortionists would induce labor, then allow unborn children from the fifth month onward to die, a practice that took up to eight hours. Stanek testified one baby “was left to die on the counter of the Soiled Utility Room wrapped in a disposable towel. This baby was accidentally thrown in the garbage, and when they later were going through the trash to find the baby, the baby fell out of the towel and on to the floor.”