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Missouri’s last abortion provider is about to shut down, Planned Parenthood says


Reported By Andy Marso |

Missouri could soon be the first state without a single place providing legal abortions. Planned Parenthood officials said Tuesday that the state is on the verge of pulling the license from its St. Louis location, which is the last one still providing abortion services following the passage of a series of restrictive laws.

But in a conference call Tuesday, Leana Wen, the president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said that clinic will likely end those services Friday because of a “weaponization of the licensing process.”

“This is not a drill. This is not a warning. This is a real public health crisis,” said Wen, a physician from Baltimore. “This week, Missouri would be the first state in the country to go dark — without a health center that provides safe, legal abortion care.”

Wen said Planned Parenthood will sue in an effort to continue providing abortions past this week. Wen said the Missouri Department of Health and Human Services plans to pull the St. Louis clinic’s license because of a refusal to submit employees to “interrogation” by regulators.

“The state is insisting that seven doctors, including residents and fellows who are obtaining medical training, be subject to interrogation that could result in them losing their medical license or even be subject to criminal prosecution,” Wen said.

Colleen McNicholas, a physician at the St. Louis clinic, said the state is attempting to strictly enforce a law requiring women seeking abortions to get a pelvic exam that she said is “invasive” and “medically unnecessary.”

A spokeswoman for the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, which regulates abortion licenses, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Planned Parenthood used to offer abortion services in Kansas City and Columbia, in addition to St. Louis.

But those clinics had to stop offering them due to a law requiring that doctors who perform the procedure have admitting privileges at a local hospital. The Columbia clinic was also damaged earlier this year by an arson fire that the FBI is investigating as a possible hate crime.

The path forward for the clinics is further complicated by a bill just signed into law by Gov. Mike Parson that prohibits all abortions past eight weeks of pregnancy. That law, which takes effect in August, would practically rule out all abortions except those done by taking pills that can be received through the mail and don’t require a brick-and-mortar clinic.

“By signing this bill today, we are sending a strong signal to the nation that, in Missouri, we stand for life, protect women’s health, and advocate for the unborn,” Parson said in a statement. “All life has value and is worth protecting.”

That law is expected to be challenged in court.

The ACLU also filed a petition drive Tuesday to get it reversed through voter referendum.

“This week, Missouri may become the first state without a health center that provides abortion, even without the courts having to say they are overturning Roe v. Wade,” said Jennifer Dalven, the director of the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project. “This is a direct result of a years-long effort by anti-abortion politicians to pass medically unnecessary restrictions that burden providers with the goal of forcing them to shut down. This has been their end game for years, but it’s contrary to what the overwhelming majority of people in this country want.”

According to a Gallup poll, about 80% of Americans believe abortion should be legal in some or all circumstances.

Legal abortions are available just across the state line from Missouri at a Planned Parenthood in Overland Park and the Hope Clinic for Women in Illinois.

According to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, about half of the 7,048 legal abortions performed in the state in 2018 were done on women who came in from other states. The vast majority of those out-of-state women — 3,279 out of 3,498 — were from Missouri.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Kansas City Star health reporter Andy Marso was part of a Pulitzer Prize-finalist team at The Star and previously won state and regional awards at the Topeka Capital-Journal and Kansas Health Institute News Service. He has written two books, including one about his near-fatal bout with meningitis.

Missouri Rolls Back Minimum Wage Hike In Effort To Bolster Business


Reported By Andrew West | July 6, 2017 

The massive liberal outcry for an increase to the minimum wage in America has backfired in St. Louis, Missouri, and now the state is taking action.

In many locales across the nation, particularly in the ultraliberal west, the minimum wage for American workers has been bumped from $7 and change to $15.00 – an enormous increase with dire consequences.  Not only have massive corporations such as McDonald’s been forced to replace flesh and blood workers with kiosks, but small, family-run businesses are shedding employees faster than you can say “order up!”.

Now, after feeling the adverse effects of paying a minimum wage of just $10, Missouri is looking to roll back the destructive switch in order to preserve the state’s heritage as a business-friendly destination.

“And Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens agrees. Next month, the minimum wage will return to $7.70 an hour — ten bucks an hour was a mistake, he says.

“‘Despite what you hear from liberals, it will take money out of people’s pockets,’ Greitens said.

“Cities all over the country have been boosting their minimum wage. It’s up to $15 an hour in Seattle, but it’s going in the opposite direction in St. Louis.

“But after nationwide protests, the minimum wage went up on July 1, or will go up soon — from Chicago to Flagstaff, Arizona, and Los Angeles to Washington, D.C. “

In St. Louis, several mom and pop restaurants were particularly hard hit by the change that just happened to coincide with an increase in product costs and taxes.  This triple-whammy of expenditures had many fearing for the future of their businesses.

Liberals continue to push the boundaries of entitlement and welfare in our nation, and their constant push for an unreasonable $15/hr minimum wage is just another symptom of that sickness.  To require any business to provide even the most inane of employees with a wage of such magnitude, especially given the sudden nature of these changes and the severity of the increase, is downright destructive.  American businesses will surely need to pass these costs along to the consumer, inflating prices and decreasing bank accounts.

In reality, the minimum wage hike will be directly transferred right back to the consumer in the form of those inflated prices, negating the entire experiment altogether.  If you make more money, but also have to spend more of it so that other employees can get their enhanced wage, you’ll find yourself at a net zero change.  It becomes a farcical campaign promise from the left that, in reality, is nothing more than a ball and cup magic trick where you simply move the money around instead of creating it or spending it.

Filibusted: Missouri Democrats Fail to Block Religious Liberty Bill Concerning Same-Sex Marriage


waving flagReported by Roger Severino / March 09, 2016 / Roger Severino is the director of the DeVos Center for Religion and Civil Society at The Heritage Foundation.

The cultural left still wants to crush dissent from its new sexual orthodoxy, no matter how small. (Photo: Whitney Curtis/REUTERS/Newscom)

A minority of Missouri legislators held a much needed religious liberty proposal hostage in Jefferson City over the last two days. Democrats there filibustered for over 36 hours against SJR 39, a commonsense bill that would let Missouri citizens vote to ban government discrimination against people of faith because of their beliefs about marriage.Yes I am a Christian

This was the most misguided filibuster since Wendy Davis tried (and failed) to block Texas from adopting reasonable limits on late-term abortions and commonsense clinic safety standards.

As we have seen in Indiana, Georgia, and West Virginia, big business and the left have once again teamed up with government actors to form a triumvirate of cultural cronyism aiming to block popular religious freedom protections.

Missouri’s proposal is sound public policy and should be adopted. It ensures continued religious freedom, a freedom that is acutely threatened in the wake of the Supreme Court’s redefinition of marriage last summer. Those who remain true to their religious beliefs about marriage need protection from government discrimination like never before, and the Missouri proposal provides just that.

Opponents of the Missouri proposal nevertheless claim that it will lead to widespread LGBT discrimination. This is false.Combined

The Missouri proposal does not take anything away from anyone. It specifically says that it shall not take away anyone’s right to a government marriage license, to receive government benefits (such as health insurance or tax deductions), or to visit a sick spouse in a hospital.

The proposal is an antidiscrimination measure that protects the rights of all Missourians to be free from government punishment and coercion when they live out their beliefs about marriage.

The Missouri proposal would protect this freedom by a constitutional amendment, which means that once the want_rel_liberty_rprotections are in place, people of faith will be insulated from state judges or politicians that are (or may become) hostile to religious freedom. It means the people of Missouri get a direct say in their own governance. It means that religious freedom is protected for all, both now and in the future.

The protections in SJR 39 are precise, clear, and concrete—so much so that a filibustering senator was asked to point to a provision, any provision, in the proposal that was discriminatory but was unable to.

This is because the Missouri proposal would prevent discriminatory government action, not unleash it. Here are some examples:

  • The proposal prevents the state government from penalizing pastors and clergy who decline to perform CP 01marriage ceremonies contrary to their religious beliefs.
  • It protects houses of worship and Knights of Columbus halls from being forced to use their facilities to host weddings that run counter to their beliefs.
  • It prevents government from stripping religious adoption agencies of their licenses or contracts because they operate under the belief that every child deserves both a mother and father.
  • It ensures that schools, charities, elder care facilities, and crisis pregnancy centers will not lose equal access to government programs or be denied tax exemptions because of sincere beliefs about marriage.

In short, like the federal First Amendment Defense Act on which it is based, the Missouri proposal would guarantee that religious institutions can retain their religious identity in private life, in public life, and in service to the poor and the needy in the community.

The proposal also protects people like Barronelle Stutzman, a 70-year-old florist from Washington state who was happy to serve gays and lesbians but was sued, fined, and harassed because she declined, based on her Christian faith, to make custom floral arrangements to celebrate a same-sex wedding. It would likewise protect the Klein family of Oregon, who were fined $135,000 for declining to make a cake celebrating a same-sex wedding in violation of their faith.RadicalChristianExtremist

Contrary to the mischaracterizations of opponents, the Missouri proposal protects only “closely held” businesses, only when they provide goods or services “of expressional or artistic creation” and only in the context of wedding celebrations and marriages that they cannot in good conscience endorse. In practice, this means family-owned bakers, florists, and photographers would be protected when providing custom wedding services, but not Hilton hotels.

Big Gay Hate MachineBut even these modest protections are still too much for some. Big Business still wants to crush its small competitors. The cultural left still wants to crush dissent from its new sexual orthodoxy, no matter how small. But perhaps worst of all, a few government actors still want to deny the people of Missouri the ability to even have a voice in determining their own future on these matters.

The people of Missouri should get to decide whether their state will be an inclusive place that protects reasonable and long-standing religious beliefs about marriage now and for the generations to come. This proposed constitutional amendment will give them that chance if only the obstructionists using extreme tactics get out of the way.

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Illegal Alien Released Due To Paperwork Mix-Up Allegedly Slaughters Five In Kansas City And Missouri


waving flagReported by Chuck Ross, Reporter, 03/09/2016

URL of the original posting site: http://dailycaller.com/2016/03/09/illegal-alien-released-due-to-paperwork-mix-up-allegedly-slaughters-five-in-kansas-city-and-Missouri

An illegal alien from Mexico who was recently released from jail in Kansas despite having a deportation detainer placed against him, has been arrested and charged with murdering four people in Kansas City, Kan. and is the prime suspect in another slaying in Missouri. Pablo Antonio Serrano-Vitorino, 40, was apprehended shortly after midnight Wednesday in Montgomery County, Mo., the Missouri State Highway Patrol announced.How is Trump Looking Now

The Mexican national had been on the run since late Monday, when he allegedly shot four men with an AK-47 in a house in Kansas City, Kan. One of the men was Serrano-Vitorino’s neighbor while the other three were reportedly visiting the residence.

The Kansas City Star reported that Serrano-Vitorino lived in the neighborhood with his wife and two small children. Neighbors said they knew of no beef between Serrano-Vitorino and his neighbor.

“This was a random act,” an aunt to two of the men told the Star. “They were innocents.”

The owner of the house where the men were found said he was allowed into the residence early Tuesday morning.

“It looked like he just stepped in the door and blew them away,” the owner, Steve Manthe, told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Serrano-Vitorino is also suspected in the murder of 49-year-old Randy J. Nordman. He was found dead in his home near New Florence, Mo., which is where Missouri state troopers found Serrano-Vitorino’s abandoned Dodge Ram truck.  The Missouri State Highway Patrol said Serrano-Vitorino was arrested after a citizen called to report that a man had approached him with a gun. Troopers responded and found Serrano-Vitorino lying face down in a ditch near Interstate 70. He is being held on $2 million bond for the Kansas City murders.

Serrano-Vitorino on the radar of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) as recently as September, when the federal immigration agency placed a detainer against him following an arrest in Overland Park, Kan. But a paperwork mix-up may have allowed him to remain free.Oh good

KSHB reported that ICE sent the detainer request to the Johnson County Sheriff’s office rather than to the Overland Park municipal court, where he was being held on a local charge.

“Further record checks indicate that ICE erroneously issued the detainer to Johnson County Sheriff’s office instead. ICE regrets the error,” ICE spokeswoman Gail Montenegro told KSHB.

Montenegro did not immediately respond to a request for additional comment.

Serrano-Vitorino had been previously deported in April 2004 after being ordered removed by a federal immigration judge.

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BREAKING: Sharia Law on the March – in Missouri


waving flagWritten by Michael Becker — November 30, 2015

URL of the original posting site: http://joeforamerica.com/2015/11/breaking-sharia-law-on-the-march-in-missouri

Looks like Sharia Law is rearing it’s ugly head again, this time in Columbia, Missouri.

15-1129 Muzzie1Columbia police on Wednesday arrested a 53-year-old man who allegedly pulled a teenage family member out of Hickman High School by her hair and slapped her.

Police re-sponded at 3 p.m. Tuesday to the school, 1104 N. Providence Road, for a child abuse call, Officer Latisha Stroer said in an email. Youssif Z. Omar was at the school and noticed a 14-year-old female family member was not wearing a hijab, a traditional headscarf that some Muslim women wear. Omar became irate, Stroer said, grabbed the girl “very violently by the hair” and pulled her outside and down a flight of stairs.

“Not wearing a hijab.”  A perfectly good reason to beat the hell out of your cousin.

Omar allegedly slapped the girl’s face and pulled her into his car by her hair, Stroer said. Police arrested Omar on suspicion of child abuse, a felony, at 5:10 p.m. Wednesday at his residence in the 1700 block of Timber Creek Drive. He was released from the Boone County Jail after posting a $4,500 bond.

I suspect when the girl gets home and has to face her parents they’ll finish the beating her uncle started.  Disrespect like that can’t be tolerated.  In a Muslim home.

Omar is not some “radical” Muslim that we should fear.  No sir.  Omar is a good, moderate Muslim who wants his family to be seen as “righteous” by Allah.  Or Muhammed.  Or whoever.

How do I know that?

A University of Missouri graduate teaching assistant is accused of grabbing a teenage family member by the hair and pulling her out of school because she wasn’t wearing a traditional headscarf worn by some Muslim women.

Certainly the University of Missouri wouldn’t hire a radical Muslim would they?  He was released on a measly $4,500 bond so he can’t be on a terrorist watch list or anything like that, so he’s just a good, moderate, Muslim.  Who wants Sharia Law imposed on his adopted home.

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Cops shoot and kill alleged gunman who murdered rookie Kentucky state trooper


waving flagPublished September 14, 2015 / FoxNews.com

A man suspected of killing a Kentucky trooper was shot and killed by state police early Monday morning, police confirmed to FoxNews.com.

Authorities said 25-year-old Joseph Thomas Johnson-Shanks, of Missouri, was located in a remote rural area near I-24 around 7 a.m., following an all-night manhunt. Johnson-Shanks was armed with a handgun and did not comply with several commands to drop his weapon, according to Sgt. Mike Webb.

“That gave the trooper closest to him no choice but to fire his agency-issued weapon, striking him multiple times,” Webb said.

Johnson-Shanks was arrested while police waited for EMS at the scene and he died from his injuries at a local hospital at 8:23 a.m. Webb said he wasn’t aware of any statements Johnson-Shanks may have made prior to being shot.

A statement released early Monday said that Trooper Joseph Cameron Ponder, 31, was pronounced dead at a Princeton, Ky., hospital after being shot multiple times late Sunday night. Ponder had been a state trooper since January of this year.

The statement said that Ponder was conducting a traffic stop Sunday on the westbound side of Interstate 24 in the western part of the state at about 10:20 p.m. local time. The statement said that the driver who was being stopped took off from the scene, with Ponder pursuing him for approximately nine miles.

At that point, according to the statement, the suspect’s car abruptly stopped, causing Ponder to crash his car into the vehicle. Police say the driver, Johnson-Shanks, got out of the car and started shooting at Ponder, hitting him multiple times. Bullets also struck the hood and windshield of the police cruiser, authorities said.

After the shooting, authorities said that Johnson-Shanks fled the scene on foot and was considered armed and dangerous. Interstate 24 was shut down in both directions early Monday to assist in the search.

“Pray for our guys that are out here,” Kentucky County Executive Wade White told reporters, according to KVFS.

Ponder, from Rineyville, was a U.S. Navy veteran who was stationed at the police post in Mayfield after graduating from the academy, KVFS reported. He reportedly had plans to move closer to home within the next year.

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Report: Suspect in Kentucky trooper’s shooting was active in #BlackLivesMatter protests

It didn’t take long for Shannon Watts of Moms Demand Action to blame the NRA’s agenda of “guns anywhere, anytime, for anyone” for the fatal shooting of Kentucky State Trooper Joseph Ponder. Suspect Joseph Thomas Johnson-Shanks, 25, was reportedly killed by police during a subsequent manhunt in a wooded area close to Interstate 24.

Rather than pointing fingers at the NRA, Watts and others might want to look into the #BlackLivesMatter movement. According to the New York Daily News, photos posted to Johnson-Shanks’ Facebook page show him not only at several protests over the death of Michael Brown, but at Brown’s funeral as well. Other photos show him with his arms raised along with the caption, “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot.”

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A war on cops?

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The Daily News also reports that two women and two children were in the car with Johnson-Shanks when he shot Ponder. Johnson-Shanks’ 18-year-old niece was arrested and charged with first-degree hindering prosecution or apprehension.

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Judge blocks new federal rule on jurisdiction of waterways


waving flagPublished August 28, 2015; FoxNews.com

EPA Monster

Thirteen states led by North Dakota asked Erickson to suspend guidelines that they say are unnecessary and infringe on state sovereignty. The federal government says the new rule clarifies ambiguity in the law and actually makes it easier for the states to manage some waterways. It wasn’t immediately clear if the injunction applied to states other than the 13 led by North Dakota.”

The other states involved in the lawsuit are Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Nevada, South Dakota and Wyoming.

State officials in North Dakota said the new rule will cost the state millions of dollars and take away from more important programs. State Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring said there’s “confusion and anxiety” among farmers and other landowners over the initiative.

North Dakota congressman Kevin Cramer called the judge’s ruling a “victory:” “North Dakota landowners and energy workers and their peers around the country will be temporarily spared the devastating consequences of an onerous rule. This is appropriate, given the judicial history of this issue and its impact on states and property rights. The injunction provides time for Congress to continue working toward a fix and for a complete judicial review of the legal merits of the rule.”

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At the very least, state officials argued, more time was needed to study the rule, which was finalized on May 27.

The government lawyers said during a hearing in Fargo last week that North Dakota’s objection wrongly assumes some bodies of water will be affected. They also argued the state is already going through some of the permitting procedures they’re complaining about.

North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem — along with attorneys general and officials from 30 other states — sent a letter last month to the EPA and the Army Corps asking that the law be postponed at least nine months. Lawyers for the states say they heard nothing back from the government, so they filed a request for a preliminary injunction.

The federal government said the request for an injunction was better suited to be heard by the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rather than a federal judge, but Erickson rejected that notion.

“The Waters of the United States rule is unlawful and an abuse of executive power,” said Julia Slingsby, press secretary of the Natural Resources committee in a statement to Fox News. “The judge’s decision to block the rule— which was challenged by 13 states – is encouraging, especially as EPA’s credibility has been questioned in the past month. The EPA needs to be stopped before it does more harm to our nation’s precious water resources.” 

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