Abortion doctor George Tiller’s effort to dismiss the misdemeanor case against him seems like a bit of a stretch. But hearings this week have shown that the public was correct to be concerned about former Attorney General Phill Kline’s dogged pursuit of Tiller and abortion records.
Tiller’s attorneys contend that Kline convinced a Topeka judge to let him subpoena medical records based on a false claim – that Tiller wasn’t reporting to authorities cases involving sexual abuse of minors. An internal memo shows that Kline had neither a complainant nor an allegation that Tiller knowingly violated the law. It’s even more serious that Kline’s office may have deliberately misled the judge by presenting a specific case as evidence of a possible reporting violation when it knew – or should have known – that Tiller had in fact properly followed the law.
The hearing has also revealed how Kline’s office worked closely with anti-abortion groups. And former Kline investigator Jared Reed testified that he believed Kline’s office was willing to do whatever it took to get a conviction, “up to and including breaking the law.”
That’s what it looked like to many voters, too.
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