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Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 11/30/2010

Late abortions being offered in Germantown

By Rob Stein

A Nebraska doctor who performs abortions late in a pregnancy is planning to begin offering the controversial procedures at a clinic in Germantown, Md., an official said Tuesday.

LeRoy Carhart plans to begin working on Monday at Germantown Reproductive Health Services, which already performs abortions earlier in a pregnancy, according to Vicki Saporta of the National Abortion Federation.

"Women will have increased access to reproduction health care services, which is a good thing for women in Maryland and the surrounding area," Saporta said in a telephone interview.

Carhart could not immediately be reached for comment.



Dr. LeRoy Carhart shows his emotions during a news conference in his office in Bellevue, Neb., Tuesday, June 2, 2009, following the death of Dr. George Tiller. (Nati Harnik - AP)

In November, Carhart said he planned to open new clinics in Iowa and the Washington area because Nebraska had implemented a new law that made it illegal to perform abortions beyond the 20th week of a pregnancy.

Only a handful of doctors publicly acknowledge they perform abortions in late pregnancy, and Carhart has been the target of antiabortion protests. George Tiller, who was one of the few doctors who were public, was fatally shot by an antiabortion demonstrator while attending church in Wichita in 2009. Carhart said he worked with Tiller in Kansas for 11 years. Carhart said he had hoped to continue providing the procedures at Tiller's clinic, but decided to look for locations elsewhere after Tiller's family decided not to re-open that facilitiy.

At the time, Carhart refused to disclose the exact locations of the new clinics, and would not say whether the Washington clinic would be in the District or one of the Virginia or Maryland suburbs, citing concerns about abortion protests. The location was selected based on a combination of factors, including which jurisdiction had the most favorable laws, he said.

"Operation Rescue is working with Maryland and Washington, D.C. pro-life groups to employ peaceful, legal means to halt Carhart's plans to do late-term abortions in Germantown," the group said in a statement. The anti-abortion group has long protested the activities of Carhart and other abortion providers.

By Rob Stein  | November 30, 2010; 12:00 PM ET
Categories:  Abortion  
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Comments

Just another murderer with a license to kill babies who breath and cry. Wonder how many he's killed and expects to face his Maker with a clear conscience?

Posted by: stellamaris | November 30, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

@ stellamaris-
I do believe that's his concern. Not yours. Don't want an abortion? Don't have one. Let women decide what they want to do for themselves.

Posted by: ravensfan20008 | November 30, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

What, a late-term abortion clinic opening here in Maryland before a decent suicide/euthanasia clinic? WTF?! Where are our priorities, Marylanders?

Posted by: FedUpInMoCo | November 30, 2010 1:44 PM | Report abuse

Late abortion clinics? What's next, 24/7 abortion clinics?

Posted by: blasmaic | November 30, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

@ravensfan20008

"Don't want an abortion? Don't have one."

Sounds awfully like this little gem from the past...

"Don't want a slave? Don't own one."

Your logic is pathetic.

Posted by: bmorrett | November 30, 2010 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, Dr. Carhart. My check is the mail.

Posted by: shewholives | November 30, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Before you all continue to show your ignorance, learn why they do late term abortions. You must have a medical reason for either the mother or unborn fetus to perform a late term abortion. Not just anyone can walk into a facility and say I don’t want this child. Before you start sending our American Women to foreign countries to save their own lives, how about we educate the ignorant first. Is it more important to you that we put the lives of the women carrying these babies at risk, not to mention their mental stability. Most people who need late term abortions don’t find out that they need them until they are in that late term. Until you are in the position that most of these FAMILIES are in, to have to make that decisions, no one should be judged or have their rights taken away from them. This is not just a woman's rights issue. This is a human rights issue for the people that the situation affects. So until you have walked in these shoes, people should just go about their own business. Cause it's not affecting their lives in any way. NOT saying to not have an opinion, just make sure you are educated in all of the facts before you voice it.

Posted by: kenw1 | November 30, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

@ravensfan20008

"Don't want an abortion? Don't have one."

Sounds awfully like this little gem from the past...

"Don't want a slave? Don't own one."

Your logic is pathetic.

Well said. It's like "against murder, don't commit one." We ALL deal with the consequences of abortion. All of us.

Posted by: linguist64 | November 30, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Well said, kenw1!

Posted by: ariesgirl4 | November 30, 2010 2:47 PM | Report abuse

@kenw1 it is not ignorance to be against late term abortions. SOME of these abortions are done because the pregnancy is affecting the woman's health. But MOST of them are done because there is a birth defect found in the fetus. Sometimes it just may be that the baby will have Down Syndrome. And some women can use mental health as a reason for a late term abortion. You can always get some doctor to agree that a pregnancy is affecting a woman's mental health. A baby has a chance of living outside the womb after 24 weeks, so the doctor is killing the baby, there is no question about that. Do you know how late term abortions are performed? It is beyond heartbreaking! I don't see any reason why late term abortions should be legal in this country unless the woman's life is in danger and I guarantee that is a small percentage of these abortions that are performed.

Posted by: dctax4u | November 30, 2010 2:58 PM | Report abuse

"Operation Rescue is working with Maryland and Washington, D.C. pro-life groups to employ peaceful, legal means to halt Carhart's plans to do late-term abortions in Germantown," the group said in a statement...

and if that doesn't work will we find out that O.R. provided hour-by-hour movement tracking of clinic personnel, a checklist of their security protocols or personal safety devices, and Cheryl Sullenger's private number laying on the dashboard of the NEXT doctor killer's automobile?

and my kudo's goes to kenw1 also. Late term abortions have nothing to do with convenience and everything to do with necessity. Don't believe? Here's a link you should look at -- http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/the_daily_dish/2009/06/its-so-personal-the-roundup.html -- Maybe these stories will open some eyes...but I doubt it.

Posted by: WilyArmadilla | November 30, 2010 3:02 PM | Report abuse

It never ceases to amaze me who instrusive the right to lifers are when they want to control the life a pregnant woman, but after the baby is born, they disappear into thin air like a buch of kids who just put a baseball through a window.

Whether a woman choses to have an abortion or not is the decision of that woman and her doctor.

And don't you know it will be the same people who so "value life" (of the unborn child) who will willfully and with pre-meditation murder doctors and their staff at the first opportunity.

When the government begins issuing social security numbers to fetus then and only then will abortions be "murder." Until that time, they are a medical procedure and no one's business other than the mother and her doctor.

Posted by: asmith1 | November 30, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

That's why my comment was that it is ok to have your own opinion, just make sure you are educated about the facts and what goes on from a families perspective, who needs this procedure. It is ignorant to make comments like "Just another murderer with a license to kill babies who breath and cry. Wonder how many he's killed and expects to face his Maker with a clear conscience?"

And I agree, some people will try to take advantage of the system (just like people do with every subject matter), and maybe an idea is to make the processes tougher (not longer because thre is a cutoff point where it becomes too late). Maybe Minimum doctors visits required or certain specialized doctors must be seen. BUT you can't punish the people who truely need it just because there are some people who want to try to beat the system. And that is the problem with the system. We are an all or nothing society. It is no one has permissions or everyone. Just because you want to take it away from the small percentage who are looking for a quick fix, you are ALSO taking it away for the families that are punished with having to go through this awful situation.

And yes, I know exactly how they are performed. Do YOU? Have you ever seen it, read the procedures, know the side affects, been to a facility, been in a woman's head that has carried a baby for 30+ weeks taking pictures, buying clothing, setting up a nursery, only to find out from 4 doctors that your baby is in the .001% of several severe disorders that your baby will not live past birth. Ever been the husband or living child of that woman and trying to live your life knowing that is emotionally killing her inside. And yes, it is a very cruel procedure for the WOMEN who actually go through it. Some are never able to recover physically or mentally. Some are never able to have children again. And other are strong enough to bounce back and try again.

And YES, I've seen both sides. I've seen the loving life of a child that was supposed to be dead several months after birth but has now lived 11 great years.

It is the worst decision a women and family have to make. I don't wish it on anyone.

It is this doctor's right to support these women who physically need this procedure. Why make a woman from the east coast travel all of the way to Denver or out of the country to save her life and end the suffering of something that doesn't know. We have doctors that support every type of disease and issue. I commend this doctor for standing up for what he believes in and supporting these women.

And not that it matters, but I speak all of this from the Male perspective, who has had to support others who have gone through these awful conditions.

Posted by: kenw1 | November 30, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Against abortion? Have a vasectomy.

Posted by: shewholives | November 30, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

asmith1 - since no one had a social security number before FDR took office, does that mean that no murders were committed in the US until the 1930s? And does that mean its okay to kill an illegal alien if they don't have a social security number?

Posted by: GabrielRockman | November 30, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Against abortion? Don't have one.

Posted by: shewholives | November 30, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Against killing doctors? Don't kill one. Let dangerous psychopaths decide what they want to do for themselves.

Posted by: GabrielRockman | November 30, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

I'm torn on this issue. If someone is pregnant, she should decide long before the 6th month whether or not she wants that baby. Early abortions are no more than the removal of a clump of cells. At the 6th month the fetus has developed human form with a beating heart and developed brain. However, at the 6th month stage it may be determined that the growing fetus has a detrimental effect on the mother's health. Who do we save, the mother or a fetus? It's a moral dilemma I personally don't want to deal with; only the mother has the right to make that decision and it will be with her for the rest of her life. If it is her voluntary decision, let her make it. Personally I don't think a fetus is human until it's at least 30 years of age and not being supported by over-indulgent parents. (Get this -- Federal Government employees can have their grown, adult, married children on their health insurance coverage up to the age of 26 with the possibility of a longer term. If you are supporting an adult, married child at age 26 you have more problems than health insurance coverage.)

Posted by: Baltimore11 | November 30, 2010 4:31 PM | Report abuse

The abortion debate brings out some of the most ignorant, closed-minded arguments on both sides of the debate. People have been saying "Against abortion? Don't have one." for decades with no attempt to understand the fundamental flaw in that logic, yet continue to say it anyway.
If we can filter out those with flawed arguments in this debate, and don't name-call, it would make for a more interesting discussion.

Posted by: bsumner | November 30, 2010 4:49 PM | Report abuse

"Late abortions being offered in Germantown"

Uh-oh. I hope my mom doesn't find out and get a 34-year-overdue procedure to rub out her biggest mistake -- Yours Truly.

Posted by: FedUpInMoCo | November 30, 2010 4:51 PM | Report abuse

"If you don't want an abortion, don't have one." Where is the social responsibility in that statement? It's like saying that if you don't want to do harm, then don't do it but allow me to. If you can convince me that when you were a fetus and your gender, height, skin color, eye color, hair color and texture,native IQ and multiple other traits were already determined, but it was not you but just a mass of tissue inside your mother, then I would be all for the "choice" that you speak of. Until then, I am for doing no harm.

Posted by: kwar70777 | November 30, 2010 4:57 PM | Report abuse

And like medical marijuana, the medical reasons that have been used to permit late term abortions have been shown to border on the absurd, not even remotely close to life and death issues. Oh well. We were told to believe that the oceans would rise and boil but for Barack Obama's election.

Yet,I'm not supposed to NOT believe my "lying eyes and ears" when I clearly see and hear a very, very, viable beating heart at 30 weeks. This is the slippery slope of Roe v. Wade and the so called "privacy clause".

Nevertheless, Carhart will absolutely be legally permitted to stop beating hearts. There will be great protestations to that new service in Gtn. It will be a carnival atmosphere, replete with Kevlar vests, security and supporters from both sides. Eventually, as the night surely follows the day, some lunatic will catch an opportunity and Carhart will stop doing late term abortions. And so it goes.

Posted by: GregGrapsas | November 30, 2010 5:21 PM | Report abuse

The victims of this tragedy are countless. The viable fetus, the expecting mother, and the friends and relations. This choice that is made is the lessor of two evils, but still evil. Sometimes it is as simple as the evil of an inconvenience or the choice over one life over another. Either way the effects are the same, pain and suffering. The choice should always be for life and never lifestyle. In instances where Ectopic Pregnancies are to a point where the fetus can no longer be moved into the uterus, this mother faces a terrible choice, probable death of herself and her child, small chance one can live, or remove the fetus and most likely live. This is not a choice which one would choose to make. But this choice is not in the Third Trimester, neither are most, even the articles posted by Wilyarmadilla are all within the second Trimester, sad as they were. Choosing death now or death later for a fetus with disabilities is no choice, with no mercy, no compassion.
The choice women make on this issue makes victims everyday, but it is a choice which must do the most good and the least evil. I pray for those who made the wrong decision, feel they made the wrong decision, or even made the right decision, because that decision was not made lightly and will be carried with them as a constant doppelganger of 'the choice'.

Posted by: JDKL | November 30, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse

My commendations to Dr Carhart and the Germsntown clinic. Dr Carhart should find Montgomery County a far more congenial place than some parts of the country. His medical practice is a boon to women with serious late term problem pregnancies in this general area. I met Dr Carhart some years ago. If memory serves, he is an active church member. Welcome to Maryland! -- Edd Doerr

Posted by: EddDoerr | November 30, 2010 5:37 PM | Report abuse

looks like I will need to volunteer to protect the good doctor and women in need from the American Taliban and terrorists.

Whatever happened to law and order and respect for others?

Posted by: nuanced | November 30, 2010 5:38 PM | Report abuse

I wish the Washington Post had not felt the need to specify the location of these services. This will only serve to bring out the religious true believers who often employ terrorist type tactics.

The women seeking these procedures are already going through very difficult periods, and should have some privacy at such times.

Posted by: 189AROD | November 30, 2010 5:47 PM | Report abuse

Who cares

Posted by: dickinyobooty69 | November 30, 2010 5:54 PM | Report abuse

NO ONE WANTS TO HAVE A LATE TERM ABORTION!!! NO DOCTOR WANTS TO PERFORM A LATE TERM ABORTION!!!

But... it is a women's right to decide what is best for her and her unborn baby.

CHOICE - That is what it is all about!!!

My body - my decsion - not yours!!!

Posted by: cglenden1 | November 30, 2010 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Don't want a slave, then don't have one sound like perfectly good logic to me and to my great grandmother who was freed by the children of slave owners. Abortions do not kill babies, period! Not every pregnancy results in a baby and natural abortions santified by God kills ends more pregnancies than all the doctors and street quacks in the world.

Posted by: eearcher | November 30, 2010 6:54 PM | Report abuse

Suggesting that an unborn child has no rights because it is contained within its mother's body is a sick delusion. It's even more shocking and disgusting to say that a child almost ready to be born can be killed and disposed of with no legal consequences. I don't know how people like Carhart live with themselves after killing so many babies and throwing their little bodies away.

Posted by: bokamba | November 30, 2010 10:34 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, WaPo, for using "anti-abortion" to describe these groups. I'm glad neutral parties are moving away from that misnomer they chose for themselves. You can't drive to an abortion clinic in a car with a "Support our troops" magnet to deliver a pipe bomb and call yourself "pro-life".

Posted by: inspired4 | November 30, 2010 10:58 PM | Report abuse

eearcher's comment may be lost among all the vitriol. God our Lord and Savior is the GREAT ABORTIONIST. He provides abortions for nearly one third of all pregnancies and then gives guidance, courage and love to others to help with ending pregnancies that He could not provide safely. And get over it folks an abortion ends a pregnancy period. All the other inflammatory word-calling just perpetuates the misunderstanding. If you believe that life begins other than described in Genesis (C2v7) of Christian Bible as well as in other holy texts that is your choice. I applaud Dr. Carhart for his love and care, I admire him for his courage and I thank God for the skill You have given this special doctor who will be ministering to women and their families facing late in their pregnancies such weighty choices. If you doubt that this is a faith based calling know that the Germantown center (as has all Dr. Carhart's and Dr. Tiller's health facilities and most all pro-choices health facilities ) participates with Faith Aloud, has chaplains and Faith communities welcoming his services. I pray for the community to welcome this reproductive health center as well.

Posted by: bands4us | December 1, 2010 8:21 AM | Report abuse

I wish the anti-abortion protestors would read and listen to this post but unfortunately I doubt it. It is my opinion that anti-abortion protestors do not want to think about what late term abortion really is and why it is so vital nor do they actually want to examine their own beliefs. They would rather blindly continue to believe their slanted view points, usually based on no personal experience or knowledge of the situations.

Late term abortion is there to provide options for women in two situations:
1) where the mother's life is in danger
2) where the fetus has a major medical abnormality.

My challenge to those against late term abortion is, if you can, imagine for one minute that you are pregnant (or your partner is pregnant) with a much wanted and loved baby. To your devastation you find out your baby will die soon (days, weeks, or months) after birth. If you continue the pregnancy you will have to watch the baby you already love die in pain while you can do nothing. Can you really honestly say that quickly ending the pregnancy and avoiding your baby having to go through that is wrong? Do you really have the inability to understand that these women are devastated by the most difficult decision they will ever have to make and their partners are just as devastated. This is not murder or anything close. It is simply parents chosing the only option they feel they can live with.

And if your opinion is founded in religion. Do you honestly believe God wants these women, babies and families to suffer? And if so why did he invent abortion and give these doctors the ability to help women in these terrible situations?

Oh and yes I do know how late term abortions are performed.

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