By Cheryl Sullenger
Columbia, MO – Operation Rescue has submitted a petition to Federal Court Judge Nanette Laughrey signed by nearly 700 citizens asking her to recuse herself from a case involving the Planned Parenthood abortion facility in Columbia, Missouri, after her husband, Chris Kelly, was photographed entering the facility.
Planned Parenthood sued the Missouri Department of Health (DOH) in Federal Court after it was notified of the Department’s intent to revoke Planned Parenthood’s Columbia facility license. A Senate sub-committee investigation discovered that Planned Parenthood’s only physician held bogus “refer and follow” privileges that did not allow her to treat patients at University Hospital as required by law. Those phony privileges were deceptively passed off as full staff privileges to the Department of Health, which issued the Columbia Planned Parenthood an abortion license last year. Once it became apparent that the Columbia facility did not actually meet licensing requirements, the DOH began the revocation process.
Planned Parenthood’s suit was assigned to Judge Nanette Laughrey, who blocked the Department of Health from enforcing state law. Laughrey is a leftist judge appointed by former President Bill Clinton.
Kelly’s presence at the Planned Parenthood office on March 10, 2016, raised questions about a possible conflict of interest. Kelly is a former Democratic state legislator who now runs a lobbying and consulting business.
“Kelly’s meeting at Planned Parenthood raises serious questions about his relationship with the abortion organization. This casts an appearance of impropriety on Laughrey’s dubious decision to allow Planned Parenthood to maintain an abortion license that it obtained through questionable means,” said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman. “We call on Judge Laughrey to recuse from the case since to her husband’s apparent involvement with Planned Parenthood creates a conflict of interest.”
The petition and signatures were sent to Judge Laughrey’s office via FAX transmission on the afternoon of April 21, 2016. The case is Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri v. Lyskowski, case number 2:15-cv-04273-NKL. The next hearing in the Planned Parenthood case is set for April 28.