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Anti-Choice Groups Assured Harriet Miers Would Vote to Overturn Roe v. Wade; Wall Street Journal Reports Assurances Were Given in Briefing Arranged by Karl Rove

New York, NY — Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) expressed outrage over a report in today's Wall Street Journal claiming that, during an October 3, 2005, teleconference, two close friends of U.S. Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers, both sitting judges, assured religious fundamentalist groups that Miers would vote to overturn the landmark Supreme Court ruling Roe v. Wade if she were confirmed. The participation of the two judges on the call was arranged by White House advisor Karl Rove. The judges, Nathan Hecht of the Texas Supreme Court and Ed Kinkeade, a federal district court judge based in Dallas, are longtime friends of Miers. In recent weeks, Hecht has served as an unofficial spokesman for Miers, assuring rightwing critics of Miers' nomination of her qualifications.

"This is nothing short of outrageous, and the Senate Judiciary Committee should fully investigate these allegations. It is deeply troubling that the White House may be providing assurances to its most extreme fundamentalist supporters that Miers would vote to criminalize abortion access," said Karen Pearl, PPFA interim president.

According to the report, participants on the conference call were 13 members of the executive committee of the Arlington Group, an alliance of 60 religious conservative groups, including James Dobson of Focus on the Family, Donald Wildmon of the American Family Association, Gary Bauer of the American Values Coalition, Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council and Paul Weyrich of the Free Congress Foundation.

The Wall Street Journal report follows controversy over an October 2, 2005, conversation between James Dobson and Karl Rove in which Dobson claims he received assurances about Miers and learned things he "probably shouldn't know."


Planned Parenthood Federation of America


Gustavo Suarez (212) 261-4339


May 12, 2014