The murder of Wichita Kansas abortion provider, Dr. George Tiller, 67, leaves some interesting political fallout. Dr. Tiller was serving as an usher at his regular church, The Reformation Lutheran Church, when a he was fatally shot to death, and a blue 1993 Taurus was seen speeding away from the murder scene. Late reports are that the arrest of a gunman has taken place.
Dr. Tiller was always a very controversial figure in the whole abortion question because he was one of the rare providers of late term abortions in the United States. Many in the antiabortion movement absolutely hated Tiller who was often nicknamed, "Tiller the baby killer". Tiller was shot in both arms once before. And Tiller was once put on trial in Kansas for violation of 19 misdemeanor laws in regards to abortion providing, but found not guilty on all charges.
Part of the problem for the antiabortion movement in the aftermath of the murder of Dr. George Tiller is that they might have have eliminated a hated figure. But at the same time the more radical elements in the antiabortion movement have now pushed themselves closer to being viewed as domestic terrorists and have also increased the likelihood of prosecution under racketeering and other organized crime laws. The antiabortion movement hardly needed to paint themselves into this legal corner of being branded as domestic terrorists and now subject to some newer and more serious laws enacted since 9/11.
The antiabortion movement didn't really gain very much today. In fact, they lost a lot of legal ground. This movement really needed to take the high moral ground on the abortion issue if they ever hoped to sway more public opinion in their direction. Instead, they have only rallied more on the pro-choice side today, as well as given judges a new incentive to allow tougher laws against the more radical elements of the antiabortion movement.
One very controversial figure hated by the antiabortion movement may be gone today. But the antiabortion movement lost a lot of political ground today as well. For the antiabortion movement, Tiller's murder is a pretty good example of winning a battle, but sacrificing losing the war for that battle's sake. That's not gaining very much.