Rep. Kathy Tyler testimony for abortions called into question


Last year, North Dakota became the first state to ban the abortion of babies with Down syndrome. It was a small but important step in protecting the lives of those with disabilities, who are often the most vulnerable among us. Unborn children prenatally diagnosed with a disability are, without question, the most helpless and endangered human beings among us. So the fact that North Dakota state lawmakers stood up in defense of these unborn children is more than just laudable. It’s incredible, and more states should follow suit.

Their neighbor to the south is trying to do just that. The bill in question is HB 1240, which would ban the abortions of children because they have Down syndrome. One so-called pro-life Democrat, Kathy Tyler, testified against the passage of this bill. In her rather strange testimony, she claims that her priest told her that Jesus would be pro-choice (aka pro-abortion), saying that she didn’t have any connection to this issue – and yet here she was, emotionally testifying in favor of allowing women to basically practice eugenics in the womb. You can listen to the audio here.

I’m not on the list this morning. And I don’t know why I’m so emotional about this. First of all, being a Democrat is a minority here. I am a pro-life Catholic Democrat, so I’m in more of a minority than anybody else around here. And I listened to this, and it puts me in a really, really tough spot. [Redacted] is my priest, in Milbank. And when I was asking him for, to sign my petition, and I say, “I’m a pro-life Democrat.” And he goes, “Well, you know what? Jesus was pro-choice.” And I stood back, and I went, “Whoa.” And I think, with the previous testimony, and that comment, and the little lecture I got after that – we have free will – and there is no way I would ever urge anyone to have an abortion. No way. Um, cute story: I don’t have any experience with Down syndrome. And I appreciate the emotion and the, the stories, and the, the families that support that. My oldest grandson was born way, way before the wedding. And my oldest granddaughter was full-term at six months. It was never a decision. Abortion was never, ever even thought about. And that’s because of the way my family believed. I look at the law that we passed out of the House yesterday with the bill, and I look at the bill that you’re looking at today. Neither one of them is enforceable. All they are going to do, with these bills, is to promote lying. If I need — if I was a person who chose to have a sex discrimination, sex selection abortion, or an abortion because of Down syndrome, there is no way that I would tell my doctor that was the reason I was having that abortion. It’s going to make a liar out of those parents. It’s totally unenforceable, and I think we need to look at it from that aspect. I appreciate all of the, the testimony. I appreciate the decisions. I appreciate from the heart. But you know, we have to have some common sense in what we as legislators are doing with this bill. And I would urge you to oppose this bill. Thank you.

It’s rather rambling testimony, but two things stood out immediately for me: the priest who she claims told her that Jesus was “pro-choice,” and her obsession with the idea of this bill making liars out of parents. They’re both interesting, because Tyler herself lied about this priest. A Catholic priest, telling a legislator that Jesus is for abortion? That set off some warning bells. So I contacted him and asked him to clarify. This was his response:

Please understand that I am NOT in anyway supportive of any type of abortion. My conversation with Representative Tyler was in reference to free will. God gave us the choice to choose life or death – with the consequences of our choices.

That’s hardly a ringing endorsement for abortion. And it seems that Tyler lied about what her priest told her. She took a conversation about free will and warped it into a defense of abortion, all the while insisting that she’s pro-life. It’s hard to make sense out of something so insane.

Tyler also offers nothing to back up her point of view…no evidence, no data, no statistics, nothing. She only mentions what her personal opinion is, and then whines about how it would make people lie. It’s a strange thing to complain about, considering that most criminals do lie about crimes. Rapists don’t often march into a police station and announce that they just raped someone. Neither do thieves or murderers or drug addicts. Yet somehow, some way, we still manage to have things like rape, murder, robbery, and theft against the law. By her logic, we should just do away with all of these laws and let people do whatever they want. Because hey, we all have free will, and everyone’s just going to lie about it anyway. Anarchy for all!

Also strange? For someone evidently so against the thought of people lying, she seems to do it quite often: both in her testimony regarding her priest, and in calling herself pro-life. You can’t be pro-life and fight for abortion.

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