Wednesday, March 02, 2005
Phill "the Pfisherman" Kline
"Look, he spells "Phill" with two l's; that should tell you enough right there," writes John Carroll of the San Francisco Chronicle. "Kline, in a news conference, talked a lot about 10-, 11- and 12- year-old- girls being raped, although there is no evidence at all that the clinics treated even one such patient. Indeed, the subpoenas for the records do not mention either the age of the patients or the existence of charges of abuse..."
"Kline says he is investigating possible child rape. Balderdash! He is trying to make anti-abortion politics by invading the privacy of women who have exercised their constitutional right, after much anguish," says an editorial in the Winfield (Kansas) Courier. "He is harassing those women. The business about rape is a smokescreen... But for the chief law enforcement officer of the state to play politics with the privacy of law-abiding citizens in this way is shameful. worse, Kline is exploiting the matter to raise funds."
"Kansans deserve a full explanation of this gross intrusion into medical confidences that are supposed to be carefully protected by law," says the Bennington (Vermont) Banner. "But Kline, a fervid anti-abortion campaigner throughout his career as a Republican politician, would not answer reporters' questions about his investigation. "Clinics should not act to protect the secrecy of the predator," he insisted in a statement, offering a blanket smear in lieu of a proper explanation."
"Phill Kline, the attorney general of Kansas and a long-time abortion rights opponent, is subpoenaing the complete medical files on dozens of girls and women who have had late-term abortions," says the St. Petersburg (Florida) Times. "It is an unjustified fishing expedition that is more about the culture wars than crime fighting. If the subpoena is allowed to stand, this tactic is certain to be adopted by other ideologically driven prosecutors."
"'If this breach of medical privacy is allowed to go forward, no one of us, man or woman, can have confidence that our medical records can be held as private,' said the Rev. Bill Ester, pastor of West Side United Methodist Church in Wichita and co-chairman of the Kansas Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice."