An abortionist likened pro-life advocates to terrorists when testifying against sidewalk counselors slapped with a lawsuit for advocating life outside of a Queens, N.Y., abortion clinic Friday.
“I see that [pro-life protesting] as a type of terrorism, yes, a type of terrorism toward the patients, definitely,” abortion-clinic-owner Merle Hoffman said during testimony in People v. Griepp et al — Judge Carol Bagley presided in the United States Eastern District of New York. The case began last week and is set to conclude Friday.
Merle Hoffman has made public references to pro-life advocates outside her clinic as “bullies” and the “American Taliban,” comparing the sidewalk counselors’ religious beliefs to the Taliban’s “misogyny and fundamentalism.” Hoffman also called the protesters particularly aggressive and insisted they “be bridled!” according to a press release sent to The Daily Caller News Foundation.
Hoffman, who Forbes dubbed the “Millionaire Abortionist,” has been operating since 1971 and runs the for-profit Choices Women’s Medical Center in Jamaica-Queens, N.Y. Hoffman’s abortion clinic sees roughly 50,000 women a year — the facility generated $10 million in revenues in 2016.
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman brought a lawsuit against the pro-life advocates, echoing Hoffman’s claim of protesters harassing and groping the women entering her abortion clinic.
Thomas More Society Special Counsel Martin Cannon is currently representing the pro-life advocates. “The rights we are guaranteed under the United States Constitution and First Amendment are on trial here,” Cannon stated during testimony. “Pro-life speech is protected speech, regardless of the New York Attorney General’s personal opinions about abortion,” he added.
Schneiderman has been a vocal supporter of Planned Parenthood and the services it offers. “I was proud to lead a coalition of attorneys general in filing an amicus brief against the Ohio state law that would defund Planned Parenthood,” Schneiderman said in April 2017. He also equated the ability to obtain an abortion with being “truly free and equal,” the press release states.
Hoffman appeared visibly irritated throughout much of her last week’s testimony, sighing loudly and tapping her fingernails on the witness stand, according to accounts of the case.
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