Germantown Pregnancy Choices
13230 Executive Park Terrace
Germantown, MD 20874
June 20, 2016
The Honorable Jan Schakowsky
Ranking Member, Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515
Dear Representative Schakowsky,
I am the Office Manager of Germantown Pregnancy Choices which is located directly across the parking lot from Leroy Carhart’s late-term abortion office in Germantown, MD. We are a pregnancy resource and referral center, offering financial, physical and emotional assistance to women who are considering, and in some cases, have had an abortion by Carhart. I am writing you about the inaccuracies and tone of your June 7, 2016 letter written to Representative Blackburn that was subsequently posted on the Democratic members of the Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives webpage “https://selectpaneldems-energycommerce.house.gov/news/press-releases/2016-06-07/democrats-call-investigation-possible-funneling-information-anti”.
As members of Congress on a Select Panel instituted by a standing Congressional Committee, all of you are my representatives. I am deeply offended by you and your fellow Democrats labeling us as “anti-abortion extremists.” Germantown Pregnancy Choices (GPC) staff and those we call sidewalk counselors have all been volunteering their time since early 2011. Our staff and the prayerful, faith-filled sidewalk counselors are there to talk with pregnant women as they come in for appointments. They are not there to harass but to engage the Moms in a loving dialogue of hope. We offer them a more informed ‘choice’ by educating them of all their options in light of the many situations that bring them to a late term abortionist. Our compassion for these women does not stop regardless of the choice she makes. We offer them post abortion resources with a compassion born out of experience since a number of our volunteers are post abortive themselves. We do not express judgmental attitudes, only sincere empathy and understanding. Be assured that these volunteers are not extremists, they are temperate, prayerful women and men who seek to help the those who come to Carhart’s office.
More specifically, from your June 7th letter you state: “Communications from lawyers representing an entity that you have targeted in your investigation indicated that - in addition to relying on information from anti-abortion extremists - Panel Republicans may be funneling information back to those individuals and groups. As we recently learned, anti-abortion activists have been made aware of the legal representation for an entity contacted by the Panel, despite such information not being public.” The ‘entity’ they are referring to is undoubtedly LeRoy Carhart based on the reference to his 1991 horse farm incident later in the paragraph.
Your letter has falsely accused us of receiving confidential information from Panel Republicans concerning Leroy Carhart’s legal counsel. We have received no such information, and your blatant misrepresentation of the truth must be called what it is: harassment of Prolife volunteers who stand in the way of your plan to derail the Select Panel’s investigations. The Select Panel Democrats have acted recklessly by stating that the Panel Republicans are “funneling” information to us in Germantown, and this serious, but erroneous allegation against the Panel Republicans demonstrates nothing but disregard for the gravity of this investigation by the Panel Democrats. We are law abiding and peaceful citizens, who have not earned this deliberate mischaracterization.
Because of the seriousness of this incident, I ask you and the other signatory Select Panel Democrats of the June 7th 2016 letter for 1) a letter of retraction and apology to the Select Panel’s Republican members accused by you of leaking privileged information, and 2) publish and distribute a retraction and apology to the pro-life community in Germantown for being inaccurately and misleadingly portrayed as uncaring, dangerous extremists.
It is my sincere hope that as the leader of the Democratic members of this panel you will not only abide by this request, but in the future, use greater discretion when relying on unsubstantiated information to discredit not just an entire investigation, but a lawful and peaceful segment of the population. As elected officials I would hope you would discontinue using disparaging terms for people you disagree with.
I have sent a letter to Representative Blackburn stating my concerns regarding your June 7, 2016 web post.
/ S /
Office Manager, Germantown Pregnancy Choices