Watch out for 'Minnesota Right to Life' scam
In the last couple months, a group called "Minnesota Right to Life" has emerged on Facebook, and it recently sent out a fundraising letter asking for money.
This group is a scam created by the Dorr brothers, well-known scammers who have created fake groups (both gun rights groups and pro-life groups) in a number of different states. You can learn more about the Dorr brother scams at MNScammersExposed.com and DorrBrotherScams.com.
Despite its deceptive name, Minnesota Right to Life is not affiliated in any way with the National Right to Life Committee. MCCL is the sole Minnesota affiliate of the National Right to Life Committee. We at MCCL have been working to protect innocent human life since 1968, and we will continue to do so long after the Dorr brothers have moved on to their next con.
Minnesota Right to Life has been making false allegations about pro-life legislators and MCCL, and has sought to raise money from well-meaning pro-life people by touting a bill that it falsely asserts could immediately end abortion. Here are responses to these dishonest claims.
Responding to false Dorr brother claims: Taxpayer funding of abortion
The Dorr brothers have aggressively accosted pro-life legislators with video cameras and falsely accused them of supporting taxpayer funding of abortion. (Despicably, they even told the small child of a strongly pro-life legislator that his father "votes to kill babies.")
In making this allegation, the Dorr brothers refer to a vote by legislators on a 2017 omnibus spending bill. They claim that a vote for that bill was a vote for abortion funding. But under the Minnesota Supreme Court's 1995 Doe v. Gomez decision, taxpayer funds pay for abortions for women receiving state assistance—whether legislators like it or not.
How can we stop this funding? We can get it overturned by getting the Court to reconsider the issue and reverse itself. And we can do that by passing a ban on abortion funding that, when it gets challenged in court, could give the Court the opportunity to reconsider.
MCCL and pro-life lawmakers (the very same ones attacked by the Dorr brothers) have, of course, often tried to enact such legislation to ban taxpayer funding of abortion. In fact, we've been working to ban abortion funding ever since Doe v. Gomez was handed down. In two recent periods when pro-lifers controlled both the House and Senate (including 2017!), we were able to get a ban passed through the Legislature. Unfortunately, Gov. Dayton vetoed it both times. MCCL and pro-life legislators will try again this year.
But finally ending taxpayer funding of abortion will not be quick or easy. That's why it hasn't happened yet! Beyond getting legislation through the House and Senate and signed by the governor, we need good justices on the Minnesota Supreme Court—justices who will, when given the chance, reverse Doe v. Gomez and uphold the ban. (That's one reason why elections for governor are so important—because the governor appoints justices to the Court.)
But MCCL and our pro-life allies in the Legislature will not give up. In addition to our legislative efforts against abortion funding at the Capitol, MCCL works during election years to inform voters about the stakes and about where candidates stand. And our State PAC supports legislative candidates who will vote to ban abortion funding, and supports candidates for governor who will sign such legislation into law and who will appoint good justices to the Court.
MCCL has also worked to spread awareness of Doe v. Gomez and build public support for ending it. That’s why we’ve produced fliers and brochures about it. That's why we discuss Doe v. Gomez in MCCL News every December, which marks the anniversary of that ruling. That's why we issue a press release (along with social media and MCCL News coverage) about abortion funding every April when new numbers are released by the state. That's why we talk about this problem on our Fall Tour and elsewhere.
And that's one reason why we continue working to pass legislation to ban taxpayer funding of abortion. Even when the odds of enactment are not currently good, it can draw attention to this ongoing injustice to unborn children, women, and taxpayers.
Minnesota Right to Life is not doing anything to stop taxpayer funding of abortion. It is merely smearing those who actually are.
Responding to false Dorr brother claims: 'Corruption' at MCCL
The Dorr brothers have alleged "corruption" at MCCL because of an endorsement of 7th District congressional candidate Michelle Fischbach, who is married to MCCL Executive Director Scott Fischbach. This charge is simply false. The MCCL Federal PAC, which is a completely separate fund from MCCL, endorsed Michelle. Scott is no longer involved with the Federal PAC so as to avoid any conflict of interest (he announced that he was stepping down from the Federal PAC last year before his wife launched her campaign).
The Federal PAC endorsed Michelle based on her own clear merits, not because of a family connection. Her long and proven pro-life voting record, pro-life legislative leadership experience, and viability in the general election far surpass that of any other candidate in the race.
Responding to false Dorr brother claims: The 'Life-at-Conception Act'
To raise money from unsuspecting pro-lifers, Minnesota Right to Life is touting its support for a "Life-at-Conception Act," which, the group says, would "finally put an end to abortion in Minnesota" and "[save] lives immediately." That's a lie. This bill has not actually been introduced in the Legislature and stands no chance of passage, but even if it were signed into law, it would not go into effect. That's because it would be immediately challenged in court and then struck down. It would save no lives and do no good. It could never go into effect as long as current Supreme Court precedents are in force.
In its fundraising letter (which is filled with bizarrely inaccurate statements), Minnesota Right to Life offers this rationale for the Life-at-Conception Act: "In their wicked Roe v. Wade decision of 1973, the Supreme Court stated that if life was ever declared to begin at conception by the states, then those states would be free to protect those unborn lives before they were born."
That's just false. In Roe v. Wade, the Court said that abortion must be legal whether states like it or not. That's the legal reality we have been dealing with for the last 47 years. It's why good Supreme Court justices (and the pro-life presidents who nominate them) are so important—we need more justices who will faithfully apply the Constitution and allow protection for unborn children.
MCCL and the pro-life movement as a whole have always worked to foster respect and protection for all unborn children from the time they come into existence at conception. But if we want to actually make a difference and save lives, we have to be strategic. That's why MCCL has taken the approach that we have. We recognize that saving some lives is better than saving none. We want to save as many lives as we can as quickly as we can.
The courts have severely limited what we can do legislatively. But we have still made progress. In Minnesota, we have enacted laws like Woman's Right to Know and Positive Alternatives, which save lives every day from abortion. Abortion numbers have significantly dropped over the last few decades—in part because of these pro-life laws. And we continue to pursue pro-life legislation at the Capitol, such as a current bill to protect pain-capable unborn children from late abortion (similar laws are in effect in 15 states, contrary to claims made in the Dorr brothers' fundraising appeal).
Even the U.S. Supreme Court has (haltingly) moved in the right direction—due to the additions of some justices nominated by pro-life presidents. In its Planned Parenthood v. Casey decision, the Court (while still upholding Roe v. Wade) opened the door to more protections for unborn children and pregnant women (which is why our Woman's Right to Know law could be enacted). In its Gonzales v. Carhart decision, the Court upheld a ban on a particularly gruesome abortion procedure. And the Court has an opportunity this spring to take a big step forward in a crucial Louisiana abortion case.
So we've made progress both legislatively and judicially, but there is much, much more work to do. The Life-at-Conception Act, however, won't accomplish anything. Whenever someone promises a simple and immediate end to abortion, you can bet that it's too good to be true!
Be careful and discerning
In this era of social media and "fake news," it's never been more important to be careful and discerning. The Dorr brothers are established scam artists. Nothing they say can be believed, and giving them your money will not advance the pro-life cause in any way.
Please share this article with other pro-lifers you know—so no one is misled by these scammers!