DENVER (CBS4) – Four days after the Planned Parenthood shootings in Colorado Springs, pro-choice and anti-abortion rights groups blame each other for the violence.
It’s not clear why the suspected gunman, Robert Lewis Dear, opened fire. Investigators say the shooter talked about “baby parts,” but they also say they don’t know yet what his motive was.
The pro-choice movement held a news conference at the state Capitol on Tuesday. They say anti-abortion rhetoric incited the killer, while some Republicans counter and say Planned Parenthood itself is to blame.
“We’re here to demand a more civil, fact-based discourse, and less fear mongering,” Amy Runyon-Harmes with ProgressNow Colorado said at the Capitol. “Today we call on right wing politicians across the state and the nation to stop their false attacks on Planned Parenthood and to apologize for the lies that are directly contributing to the politically motivated violence in America today.”
They say those politicians share some of the blame for what happened at the Planned Parenthood in Colorado Springs. They pointed to a hearing at the Colorado Capitol about accusations of fetal tissue trafficking as evidence. Sen. Kevin Lundberg, R-Berthoud, headed up the hearing.
“To say that a legitimate discussion in state Legislature on specific issues that impact Colorado law would yield a result like that is just stretching things beyond belief,” Lundberg told CBS4 Political Specialist Shaun Boyd.
Republican Rep. JoAnn Windholz went further, writing on Facebook: “Violence is never the answer (but) … The true instigator of this violence and all violence at any pph (Planned Parenthood) facility, is pph themselves. Violence begets violence.”
“When one of our own elected officials is saying ‘violence isn’t the answer, but.’ And ‘violence begets violence,’ we’ve gone too far,” Runyon-Harmes said.
While none of the Republican leadership denounced what Windholz said, Lundberg told Boyd there is no justification for the violence, saying it is the opposite of the pro-life perspective.
NARAL Pro-Choice is asking the Department of Justice to investigate the Colorado Springs shootings as domestic terrorism.