Archive for Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Tiller’s abortion clinic sold

September 26, 2012


— The shuttered Wichita abortion clinic formerly operated by the late Dr. George Tiller has been bought by an abortion-rights group that intends to reopen it as a family and women's health center that will offer abortions, among other services, the group's executive director said Wednesday.

Julie Burkhart said the Wichita-based non-profit group Trust Women Foundation Inc. purchased Tiller's former clinic in late August. Erin Thompson, an attorney for Tiller's widow, Jeanne, confirmed the sale.

Burkhart, a former Tiller employee who also founded a separate Trust Women political action committee, has said for months that she was trying to raise money for a new clinic in Wichita. All of Kansas except for the Kansas City area — has been without an abortion clinic since an anti-abortion zealot murdered Tiller at the doctor's church in May 2009.

Tiller was among a few U.S. doctors known to perform abortions in the final weeks of pregnancy, but Burkhart said the new clinic won't offer such services, largely because Kansas legislators have tightened restrictions on late-term procedures. But she said the new clinic will perform abortions earlier in pregnancy as part of a wide range of obstetrical and family care.

Burkhart declined to discuss the details of the sale, but property tax records available online list the appraised value of the property as $734,100. Burkhart said she can't say yet exactly when the new clinic will open or how many doctors will work there.

"It's about more than abortion. We're about serving the needs of women," Burkhart said during a telephone interview. "Thousands of women right now have to travel three hours-plus for medical services. It's a burden on women. It's a burden on women's families."

Kansas has three abortion clinics, but all are in the Kansas City area. The Wichita Eagle first reported the sale of Tiller's former clinic, based on public records.

The limited liability company that owns the property, Kellogg Investments, filed a document Tuesday with the Kansas secretary of state's office, listing a new agent, Topeka attorney Robert Eye, who declined to comment Wednesday. The same one-page document lists the Trust Women Foundation as the only member of the company, and it is signed by Burkhart and dated Monday.

Kellogg Investments previously had been operated by the Tiller family, and after Tiller's death, his widow was the only person listed as owning 5 percent or more of the company.

"The family is no longer involved," Thompson told The Associated Press, saying she had no other details.

Abortion opponents have been watching for signs that a new clinic would open in Wichita, and earlier this months, anti-abortion groups said the expected Burkhart to open one early next year.

"It is tragic Burkhart appears poised to re-engage in destroying unborn children and exploiting women for money," Mary Kay Culp, executive director of Kansans for Life, said in a statement Wednesday.

In a recent advertisement circulated by email to abortion-rights supporters, Trust Women said it was looking for medical staff experienced in first and early-second trimester abortions and planned to open its clinic between mid-November and January 2013.

Burkhart said the group looked at seven or eight buildings but concluded others were not the correct size or needed too much renovation. Tiller's former clinic, with 8,800 square feet of space, had been listed for sale starting in 2010.

"We never looked at renting," Burkhart said. "Frankly, this building was the best building. It made the most sense for us."

But when Tiller operated the clinic, it was the site of regular protests by abortion opponents, including large "Summer of Mercy" demonstrations both in 1991 and 2001. Burkhart was a clinic employee and ran ProKanDo, a PAC formed by Tiller, from 2002 to 2009.

Burkhart acknowledged the building's past was an issue in the search for a new clinic site but said the good that can come from reopening it as a medical center "outweighs any stigma that people might see."

"We want to work to take the abortion piece of health care out of the corner and normalize it," Burkhart said. Women should not be ashamed. Women should not be intimidated."


Enlightenment 5 years, 2 months ago

Best of luck with the opening Ms. Burkhart. There need to be more clinics that offer a range of women's healthcare, inclusive of abortion services.

avarom 5 years, 2 months ago

No need for abortion services if any woman truly wants an abortion... all they need to do is take a Flu Vaccine...there is enough Thirmerosal/mercury to kill anything.

Romans832 5 years, 2 months ago

I don't equate pregnancy with illness; therefore, I cannot call abortion "health care." I receive health care when I am sick.

deec 5 years, 2 months ago

If a woman is having an ectopic pregnancy or has gestational diabetes, does that meet your definition of illness?

Romans832 5 years, 2 months ago

Fair question. I am not terribly knowledgeable about gestational diabetes, so I turned to Wikipedia. From what I read, this is generally not life-threatening for the mother, so I would not call that an illness requiring an abortion for its cure. In addition, the webpage for the American Diabetes Association does not mention abortion as a treatment for gestational diabetes. Yes, I would consider an ectopic pregnancy an illness related to pregnancy.

deec 5 years, 2 months ago

I didn't say abortion was a treatment for diabetes. I asked if it qualified as an illness.

Liberty275 5 years, 2 months ago

If you had a tapeworm, would you equate that with an illness?

Dan Matthews 5 years, 2 months ago

Wow. So you are equating unborn babies with tapeworms? smh

ebyrdstarr 5 years, 2 months ago

And then there's preeclampsia and hyperemesis (sp?) and any number of other conditions. Good grief, the idea that pregnancy is not a health issue is nothing but willful ignorance.

Cait McKnelly 5 years, 2 months ago

Pregnancy is not an illness. But denying that it requires healthcare is a very foolish and dangerous thing to do. However, given your screen name I'm left to assume that you are one of those people that are more than happy to let women die and their fetus die with them and call it "God's will" rather than intervene.

avarom 5 years, 2 months ago

I would go even further and bet He has No Spine either or a Uterus!! Maybe He's Not from this World........Maybe He's from URANUS!

Liberty275 5 years, 2 months ago

He has a clue. A doctor kills a potential human and that is against his religious beliefs. The clue points to murder in his eyes. And he's right. It is murder. We are human from conception. What's it called when you kill a human in cold blood?

You can reject his god-centered world view and words all you want, and question his definition but you don't have to belittle the man for beliefs.

Better you should just write "No" instead of "Clueless".

Make no mistake, I am absolutely pro-abortion. Any term, any reason, a woman has the right to do with her body as she wishes. Under 16 is a little different.

ebyrdstarr 5 years, 2 months ago

I'm curious. Why is under 16 different?

ebyrdstarr 5 years, 2 months ago

I'm well aware. But from liberty's perspective, I'm curious why he or she thinks that's relevant.

Katara 5 years, 2 months ago

I figured you were but if you are not able to consent to sex when under 16, why would you be considered able to make medical decisions regarding your body?

It seems pretty consistent thinking but it does seem out of character for him (in terms of what the state should be allowed to regulate).

ebyrdstarr 5 years, 2 months ago

It's inconsistency from that particular poster that made me curious.

But I would argue that regardless of age, no one should be forced to carry a pregnancy to term against her will.

Katara 5 years, 2 months ago

I don't disagree on that but one could argue that someone under 16 may not be very sure what her will really is. I'm not sure I feel comfortable leaving those decisions to children.

Bob Forer 5 years, 2 months ago

"You can reject his god-centered world view and words all you want, and question his definition but you don't have to belittle the man for beliefs."

Those words are rather ironic coming from someone who is quick to belittle folks who espouse political beliefs different than his narrow libertarian viewpoint.

ThingTwo 5 years, 2 months ago

It's the conviction in his words which reflect his/her narcissistic relationship with a higher power. Judging everyone other than himself while sitting between a monitor and chair is what he/she does best.

Cait McKnelly 5 years, 2 months ago

No more eager to "kill innocent children" than you are to deny food, shelter, education and healthcare to already born children.

Mike Ford 5 years, 2 months ago

nice to know that as poor people and their children starve you don't care about them. you only care about the wedge issues that your small brain can wrap itself around. to think that the world can go in the tank and three issues are embraced by the small brains.....god, guns, and abortion.....some people are distracted like bugs in a bug about them being born but don't worry if they struggle and end up poor or cannon fodder.......

Cai 5 years, 2 months ago

These comments for the most part sadden me.

This clinic will provide abortions, yes. but so many of you are missing the other piece of this. SO many women can't find a women's health clinic that would provide IN pregnancy care (you know... that care you need because you've chose to continue your pregnancy?) , birth control, STD tests, etc.

This clinic will provide all of THOSE services too.

Liberty275 5 years, 2 months ago

Yes, a fetus is a human. But a fetus is not an American.

The argument isn't about the child in the womb, it is about the constitutional rights of the woman with the womb. The unborn child has no rights of any sort.

There are two sides to every coin. If you can force a woman to carry a child to term, you can just as easily force her to abort. If you can control her body, you can make her do anything.

If you can talk a woman out of aborting a child, good for you. You have done the species a service and you can feel confident your god will smile upon you. But unless it's your daughter. it really isn't your business.

In_God_we_trust 5 years, 2 months ago

Our Rights do not come from the Constitution (there is no such thing as Constitutional Rights, if they did, the government could take them away), Rights listed in the Constitution are enumerated or listed that come from the authority of God. God is the authority behind the United States of America Constitution, and the source of your Rights. So if you will claim Rights as an American, you have to acknowledge God, because He is the source of your Rights. God says you shall not kill.

Cait McKnelly 5 years, 2 months ago

This borders on the laughable. You, sir, are no Constitutional scholar. Watching someone bend themselves like a pretzel trying to explain how the US Constitution is "based on God" is highly entertaining.
I'll leave you with a quote.
"Isn't it interesting that a country founded to allow freedom from religious persecution is now using religion to persecute freedoms?" (author unknown)

Dan Matthews 5 years, 2 months ago

Wow. Now someone is equating unborn children with aliens. How low our society has become.....

avarom 5 years, 2 months ago

And, Declaring fetuses to be legal persons with rights would generate countless legal and social dilemmas. Fetuses would have to become dependents for tax and estate purposes, be counted in official census-taking, and be subject to many other laws affecting persons. Wouldn't every zygote have to have a Social Security Number, as well as a Certificate of Conception? The sheer absurdity of this proposal reveals that society does not think of fetuses as persons in the normal sense at all, and would have great difficulty trying to treat them as such.

MarcoPogo 5 years, 2 months ago

Since we're inserting whatever words we want, let's substitute the word 'FETUS' with 'LYCANTHROPE'; now can we kill it?

Frederic Gutknecht IV 5 years, 2 months ago

Let me get this right, you want the fetus (which in you logical mind is a "slave") to enslave the pregnant woman, forcing one slave to carry the "fetus/slave" to term? You don't even realize how insane that is, do you? You, my friend, are a terrorist at heart.

Cait McKnelly 5 years, 2 months ago

Calling it "Tiller's abortion clinic" is inflammatory and an attempt at an insult. First, he was DOCTOR Tiller. Give the man the respect of his title. Two, he ran a full service women's clinic that included much, much more than just abortions, even including, /gasp, prenatal services. I don't know who wrote the headline but their prejudices clearly shine through.

jhawkinsf 5 years, 2 months ago

"Governor" Brownback, "President" Obama, "Justice" Scalia, "Secretary of State" Kobach, "Former President" Bush ... I have yet to see a single complaint that earned titles were being denied.

The AP news article today making note of this sale mentioned this clinic, when run by "Dr." Tiller, was one of very few nationwide that performed late term abortions, setting itself apart from other clinics. Perhaps that explains why abortion was so prominent in the description, rather than full service woman's health clinic. Just a guess, though.

jhawkinsf 5 years, 2 months ago

Yes and no. Live in Kansas, yes. First logged in while in S.F., hence the user name.

With your permission, I will continue to opine.

Cait McKnelly 5 years, 2 months ago

In my opinion, Operation Rescue is a domestic terrorist cell. They operate in a highly shadowy way that is just this side of the letter of the law and technically legal They receive stolen property "anonymously" and flaunt it and don't return it. (To my knowledge, they still have not returned the shred stolen from the Kansas City clinic. One hopes that clinic has since invested in a chip shredder.) And they have the crazy zealots that will actually spend the hundreds of hours needed to reconstruct shredded documents. There is also the very troubling fact that Scott Roeder had Cheryl Sullenger's private phone number in his possession. Given that she lied and initially said she didn't even know Roeder, the excuse she eventually gave for that fact held no more water than a tea strainer.

Kathy Theis-Getto 5 years, 2 months ago

You are so right Mach. In fact the Feds watch some our own little terrorists on this forum very closely.

Cait McKnelly 5 years, 2 months ago

So are you excited, artichokeheart? Got your sign and your boots and your fake blood and pictures of monkey fetuses ready?

Mike Ford 5 years, 2 months ago

let the economy go...... let reality go.....some people love the distraction of this whole abortion issue enough to ignore's the woman's choice.... not a gazillion willfully deceived godlicans who create an issue while ignoring all of the blood spilled in the name of their religions so that other cultures and lands could be conquered....their cultures vanquished.....and the guilty allegedly forgiven.....

Cait McKnelly 5 years, 2 months ago

He doesn't have any and can't. In fact, if anybody is in bed with the legislators it's Americans United for Life, the anti-abortion arm of ALEC. They create cookie cutter anti-abortion legislation for people like Lance Kinzer to sponsor and pass.

Christine Anderson 5 years, 2 months ago

I do believe abortion is murder, and yet I will be voting Democrat this year, because I finally came to realize there are many issues to weigh, not just one. I do not believe in the use of violent means to further pro-life beliefs. Yes, those who criticize pro-lifers for caring only about life before birth, you have a very valid point. If we as a people, (and our political candidates) claim to be pro-life, then it must include ALL life. It must include not revering a governor who doesn't give a shirt about children after they are born, as evidenced by his cuts in food stamps and medicaid. It must include funding things like the Ryan White foundation, instead of spending the money on a damn rose garden ! It must include the belief that our disabled and elderly's lives are equally preciious as ours. It means don't shut down their respite care programs that allow them to remain in their homes. Being truly pro-life means ALL stages of life.

Dan Matthews 5 years, 2 months ago

Ummmm, couldn't that also mean the same thing? Abortion = reducing the number of unwanted pregnancies?.....

Cait McKnelly 5 years, 2 months ago

You ask a good question but you need to understand that to some people, ANY reason, even if it's to save the life of the mother, is "insignificant and minor". To them, the women in this equation simply aren't worth anything more than an incubator. They would quite literally prefer that she die and take the fetus with her because she, in and of herself, isn't worth saving. I know that sounds outright insane but the man currently running as the Republican candidate for vice president believes this. He has stated that he would prefer to see abortion outlawed entirely, even to save the life of the mother.

Katara 5 years, 2 months ago

There won't be any examples for 3rd trimester abortions for insignificant, minor reasons because that is illegal in all states. All states restrict late-term abortions (considered after 22-24 weeks).

This article is very informative and well-written. It does talk about Dr. Tiller. It provides facts about later-term abortions and contains lots of informative links.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.