Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Norma McCorvey, "Jane Roe," Arrested At Sotomayor Hearing

The Huffington Post

WASHINGTON — The plaintiff in the landmark abortion-rights case Roe v. Wade, who became an abortion protester in recent years, was among four demonstrators arrested Monday for disrupting Sonia Sotomayor's Supreme Court nomination hearing.

Norma McCorvey, 61, of Texas, better known as "Jane Roe," began screaming that Sotomayor was "wrong" about abortion during the opening statement of the newest member of the Senate, Al Franken, D-Minn.

McCorvey's suit led to the 1973 Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion. But in recent years, she switched sides to speak out against abortion.

Capitol Police identified the other three arrested as: Robert James, from Virginia; Andrew Beacham of Indiana; and Francis Mahoney of Florida. Police did not provide their hometowns.

The first outburst came during Sen. Dianne Feinstein's opening statement. A man in the back of the room interrupted the California Democrat's remarks by shouting: "Senator! What about the unborn!" He called abortion "genocide."

Sotomayor briefly turned her head toward family and friends seated in the front row as the first protester was taken away and his shouts faded.

The initial episode prompted a warning by the Judiciary Committee chairman, Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., that no displays for or against the nominee from observers would be tolerated.

McCorvey was among a group that had been in seats reserved for the public. She began shouting as the group was escorted out so a new group could enter. Another man protested in Spanish.

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