Posted by on September 19, 2023 2:42 pm
Categories: News Washington Examiner

Lawyers for DC anti-abortion activist applaud Chip Roy for FACE Act repeal bill

FILE – Anti-abortion activists Lauren Handy, front, with Terrisa Bukovinac, from left, Jonathan Darnell, and Randall Terry, speak during a news conference in Washington, April 5, 2022. Five anti-abortion activists, including Handy, a woman who was discovered to have five fetuses in her home, were convicted Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2023, of illegally blocking a reproductive clinic in Washington, The Washington Post reported. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta, File) Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP

Lawyers for DC anti-abortion activist applaud Chip Roy for FACE Act repeal bill

Gabrielle M. Etzel September 19, 01:47 PM September 19, 01:48 PM Video Embed

The attorneys representing Lauren Handy, who is awaiting sentencing on federal charges of blocking access to a Washington, D.C., abortion clinic, told the Washington Examiner that they applaud Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) for introducing legislation to repeal the FACE Act, a law that makes it a federal crime to block access to abortion clinics.

“But for the courageous and sacrificial actions of Lauren Handy and her colleagues, this bill would probably have never seen the light of day,” Steve Crampton of the Thomas More Society told the Washington Examiner. “May it be the beginning of a movement to restore limited government and ordered liberty in our land.”


Roy’s bill aims to repeal the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act, which “prohibits threats of force, obstruction, and property damage intended to interfere with reproductive healthcare services.”

Handy, the director of activism for the left-wing group Progressive Anti-Abortion Uprising, was convicted under the FACE Act as the lead organizer of a protest at the Washington Sugi-Clinic in 2020.

U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, appointed by President Bill Clinton in 1997, ruled unexpectedly in Handy’s case to keep her and the four other defendants in custody until sentencing because the jury ruled that they did not engage in an “entirely nonviolent” protest because a clinic worker sustained an ankle injury during the protest. Handy and her fellow defendants face up to 11 years in prison.

Crampton and his colleague, Martin Cannon, previously told the Washington Examiner that they intended to file an appeal on the grounds that the FACE Act is no longer applicable since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. They argue that this decision ultimately eliminated the federal government’s interest in protecting access to abortion.

“Our Constitution separates power between the federal government and the states for a reason, and we ignore that safeguard at our own peril,” Roy told the Daily Signal. “The FACE Act is an unconstitutional federal takeover of state police powers; it must be repealed.”

Roy will be joined by Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) who plans to introduce a companion bill in the Senate.


“This bill is welcome news though it is long overdue,” said Crampton. “The federal takeover of states’ rights has been going on for decades and citizens of all stripes should oppose it … We are grateful to Congressman Roy and Senator Lee and their co-sponsors for introducing this legislation.”

“This is a monumental step towards justice for our preborn siblings and Rescuers alike. The FACE Act has been flying under the radar for decades, and only now when it has been truly challenged, has the truth about it come to light,” said PAAU Executive Director Caroline Taylor Smith in a press statement. “The FACE Act must be repealed, and I am proud to stand next to anyone who will support nonviolent means of achieving justice for all.”

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