There is officially only one abortion clinic left in the state of West Virginia. The Charleston Gazette-Mail reported that the Kanawha Surgicenter has closed permanently. According to the facility website, abortions were committed there up to 18 weeks of pregnancy, by Dr. Gorli Harish.
On Tuesday, a note was posted on the door announcing that the facility was closed. Harish’s wife told the “Gazette-Mail” that the center was closing because Harish did not wish to travel to West Virginia every month anymore; they had moved to California to be closer to their children, and he had been commuting to the center to commit the abortions.
It was reported that medical supplies were left in a dumpster outside the facility, along with furniture. Harish’s wife said that medical records had already been shredded, but a man was found pulling syringes from the trash, indicating that staffers may not have been concerned with properly disposing of the equipment.
Unsurprisingly, a local pro-abortion organization mourned the closure of the facility. “A woman in need of reproductive health care in West Virginia already faces serious obstacles, whether she is seeking obstetrical or abortion care,” Margaret Chapman Pomponio, executive director of WV Free, said. “Closure of Kanawha Surgicenter just exponentially increased the challenges. Now that we are down to only one provider, it’s more important than ever that we stand together to protect this critical access.”
She then stated that politicians must protect the remaining abortion facility, and subtly decried the pro-life laws that have recently been passed. “No matter how one may personally feel about abortion, we should all be able to agree that women and girls deserve to be safe,” she said. “Women’s Health Center in Charleston is a safety net. WV FREE and the women’s health community calls on our elected leaders to protect what little access West Virginia women have left.”
In 2015, West Virginia lawmakers put a 20-week abortion ban into place, which the abortion lobby immediately slammed, even though only around eight women in the entire state of West Virginia had undergone a late-term abortion each year, and Americans strongly support banning late-term abortion.
Then, in 2016, West Virginia banned dismemberment abortions, which also created outrage among the pro-abortion lobby. Pro-abortion advocates tried to claim that using the term “dismemberment abortion” instead of the medical term, dilation & evacuation, was misleading, inaccurate, and intentionally inflammatory. But as Dr. Anthony Levatino, a former abortionist, explains, dismemberment is an accurate description of the procedure:
West Virginia is also home to one of the few pro-life Democrats left in the party. West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin has been a strong advocate for life, having broken with his party by voting to defund Planned Parenthood, and speaking out against Democrat efforts to abolish the Hyde Amendment, which he called “crazy.” “It’s something that I know most of the Democrats in West Virginia and most West Virginians would not agree with. I don’t either,” he said.
If pro-life laws continue to be passed, and West Virginians continue to fight for life, then the state may very well be the first in the nation to be completely abortion-free.