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Pro-life pregnancy clinics are still being targeted by violence three months after the infamous Supreme Court leak revealed the court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
Police in Minnesota are looking for the vandals responsible for smashing windows and spray-painting in red, “if abortion isn’t safe, neither are you,” at Abria Pregnancy Resources in St. Paul late Sunday or early Monday, a local ABC affiliate reported.
The clinic’s director, Angela Franey, previously spoke out in support of the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn the federal right to an abortion, which was ultimately handed down in the case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization on June 24, nearly eight weeks after a draft opinion of the decision leaked to the press.
The clinic remained closed on Monday as staff cleaned up the damage but reopened as usual on Tuesday.
“It’s safe now and no one was hurt,” Franey told The Catholic Spirit, the official newspaper of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. “Our goal is to make things safe and secure again, to pick up the pieces, to meet the challenge face to face and continue to overcome these things with good, because that’s what we do.”
The incident followed acts of vandalism against three other pro-life clinics in St. Paul, Minneapolis and Northfield in recent weeks. The Northfield Women’s Clinic, about 40 miles south of the Twin Cities, was vandalized last week with its front window smashed and the words, “Fake Clinic Not Safe,” spray-painted on the building.
The center’s director, Teresa Edwards, told the Northfield News, “It has been a sad week.”
“Ever since the overturn of Roe, we have been getting suspicious calls and emails,” she said. “What’s especially sad is that we offer so many pregnancy resource services to the community.”
The vandalism in Minnesota makes up only a fraction of the attacks on crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs) across the country since the May Supreme Court leak. Within a week of the leak, at least five CPCs were attacked and dozens more have been targeted since then. Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America issued a study in June reporting more than 40 “incidents of violence, vandalism and intimidation” since the leak.
Progressive politicians, such as Democrat Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, have also verbally attacked CPCs. Last month, Warren accused the clinics of “torturing” pregnant women seeking abortion information and called on the federal government to “shut them down all around the country.”
“In Massachusetts right now, those crisis pregnancy centers that are there to fool people who are looking for pregnancy termination help outnumber true abortion clinics by three to one,” Warren told NBC 10 Boston.
Democrats like Warren say crisis pregnancy centers, or CPCs, disseminate misinformation about the risks associated with abortion in an effort to persuade women to give birth. She introduced the Stop Anti-Abortion Disinformation Act in June, which would direct the Federal Trade Commission to prescribe rules “prohibiting disinformation” in the advertising of abortion services.
CPCs are typically faith-based and offer reproductive health care, prenatal care and counseling to help expecting parents choose life over abortion. Most centers offer free STI testing and treatment, pregnancy testing, prenatal vitamins, ultrasounds, post-abortion care, parenting classes, adoption referrals, and even free baby clothes and diapers once the baby is born. The centers receive funding primarily through private donations and grants from religious organizations, but many states also allocate public money to the centers via programs like “Choose Life” license plates, according to the Charlotte Lozier Institute.
“Long-term data shows that pro-life pregnancy centers consistently have customer satisfaction rates above 95 percent, and a significant number of women find support at pro-life pregnancy centers through word-of-mouth referrals in their community,” Nichole Wilson, executive director of the Charlotte Lozier Institute, said Wednesday in a statement provided to Fox News Digital. “The inflammatory rhetoric of pro-abortion politicians, including Senator Elizabeth Warren and Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, flies in the face of reason.”
“Here are the facts,” she continued. “In 2019, more than 2,700 pro-life pregnancy centers served roughly two million women, men, and youth with nearly $270 million in services, most at little or no charge, and community-based care facilities for women, including Federally Qualified Health Centers and pro-life pregnancy centers, outnumber Planned Parenthood facilities 14 to 1.”
“This is what supporting women actually looks like. Attacking pro-life pregnancy centers? Not so much,” she added.
Heidi Matzke, director of the Alternatives Pregnancy Center in California, said during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing last month that her clinic has been forced to hire 24-hour security amid recent leftist attacks on facilities like hers.
“Just last week… a man approached our care center with an armed machete,” Matzke said during the July 12 hearing.
“We have been forced to hire 24-hour on site security. We have had to reinforce doors and bullet-proof our walls,” Matzke continued. “We’ve had to paint our building with anti-graffiti coating. We’ve added cameras, armed our staff with pepper spray and stopped running our mobile clinic because of threats of violence.”
Republicans are demanding that the Department of Justice work to prosecute groups, including one called Jane’s Revenge, that are attacking pro-life centers.
“The lack of a response from both the Justice Department and the White House is extremely, extremely disappointing,” Senate Judiciary Committee ranking member Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, said during the hearing. “Along with the threats against the justices, threats against pro-life and crisis pregnancy centers have dramatically increased since the leak of the Dobbs decision by pro-abortion extremists.”
Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., unveiled legislation on July 14 to protect CPCs and houses of worship.
“The Biden Administration has turned a blind eye while radical leftists attack pregnancy care centers and houses of worship,” said the senator. “And now left-wing politicians are trying to shut them down.”
The senator’s bill would enhance penalties for such attacks by making it a felony punishable with a criminal fine upwards of $25,000. It would also require a seven-year mandatory minimum prison sentence when such attacks result in arson.
Minnesota Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith, both Democrats, have been outspoken against CPCs. Smith last month called the centers a “sham” and signaled support for Warren’s comments about shutting them down. Klobuchar slammed the centers as being “disguised as clinics” and asked Google to intervene is stopped disinformation from CPCs.
In June, Klobuchar and Smith joined Warren in a letter to Alphabet Inc. CEO Sundar Pichai, demanding that Google limit the appearance of “anti-abortion fake clinics.”
Fox News Digital reached out to Klobuchar’s and Smith’s offices to find out if the senators denounce the recent vandalism against CPCs in their state, or if they support Hawley’s bill.
“Senator Klobuchar condemns all violence against these centers,” Klobuchar spokesperson Jane Meyer told Fox News Digital.
Smith’s office did not respond.
Fox News’ Tyler Olsen, Haris Alic and Kelly Laco contributed to this report.