Wendy Norris

RH Reality Check

Wendy Norris is a freelance writer from Denver, Colorado now working on assignment for Rewire. She was previously a New Journalist Fellow for the Center for Independent Media and managing editor of The Colorado Independent. She is editor/founder of Unbossed.com.


All Work

Anatomy of a FACE Act violation

Wendy Norris

Kansas has long been a hotbed of anti-choice protests stoked by a hard-right political climate and conservative religious views. But the prairie state is now home-base for the most radical elements of the movement.

Will Ab-Only Retire With Obey?

Wendy Norris

The nation's capitol is swirling today with talk of the impending retirement of another veteran lawmaker, David Obey (D-Wisc.). His retirement could have major implications for reproductive health issues in the House.

‘Motherhood Politics’ Hijacked Healthcare Debate

Wendy Norris

Instead of looking at the areas of most importance to all of us on healthcare, the conversation is hijacked by this central concern about whether women are going to continue to choose to be mothers, says Marie Wilson of The White House Project.

Remembering Roe in Denver: Real People, Real Stories

Wendy Norris

Colorado women at a "Remember Roe" event tell of the driving forces behind their advocacy for choice in a state in which "personhood" threatens Roe, and conservative lawmakers try to kill a bill banning gender rating in insurance policies.

Crowdsourcing Condoms: Where They Are and Are Not

Wendy Norris

Condoms prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections. But finding them in a store can require the tracking skills of a bloodhound. An investigative report by Wendy Norris on access to condoms in Colorado, including an interactive map.

Regional Groups Find Allies in New Places

Wendy Norris

While ultra-conservatives attempt to derail health reform with intellectually dishonest charges of taxpayer-funded abortion, state and local pro-choice advocates seek more centrist issues to attract allies to the greater cause.

Egg-as-Person State Law Campaigns Attract New Faces, Old Radicals

Wendy Norris

The so-called "personhood" movement promoting constitutional rights for fertilized eggs got a fresh shot in the arm in recent days with ballot initiatives gearing up in Florida and renewing efforts in Colorado and Montana. And a host of familiar nationally-known and emerging local activists from hard line anti-abortion groups are leading the new charge to ban abortion, contraception, and other comprehensive reproductive health care.

Abortion

Carhart Stands Firm Amidst Protests

Wendy Norris

The biggest "pro-life" proponent in Bellevue, Neb., didn't join the phalanx of 65 anti-choice protesters on the sidewalk next to Dr. Leroy Carhart's clinic over the weekend. He was too busy providing reproductive health care to dozens of women inside.

‘Egg-as-Person’ Crusade Drives Big Money to Anti-choice Groups

Wendy Norris

In just five short years, the primary movers and shakers in the absolutist anti-abortion/anti-choice movement seeking to promote the “personhood” of zygotes (the single cell that forms after a sperm fertilizes an egg) have amassed nearly $58 million in tax-deductible contributions for their cause. A special investigative report by Wendy Norris for Rewire.

Personhood Bill Lays Egg in North Dakota Senate

Wendy Norris

Anti-abortion activists who rallied behind Colorado’s Amendment 48 last year came up with another big goose egg Friday when the North Dakota Senate rejected a “personhood” bill that sought to confer constitutional rights to zygotes.

Fanning the Radical Anti-Abortion Flames in Colorado

Wendy Norris

An internecine fight has been brewing between warring camps of absolutists that oppose abortion under any circumstances versus those who advocate for incremental change or are willing to make exceptions in certain cases. Latest battleground: Colorado.

Using “States’ Rights” to Restrict Abortion

Wendy Norris

Conservative activists are gearing up to enact state laws to restrict abortion. Colorado is once again serving as a political incubator in yet another attempt to chip away at Roe v. Wade, this time in the form of an amendment stating that life begins at conception.

In Colorado, Playing “Who Hates Abortion More?”

Wendy Norris

Hard-line anti-abortion forces in Colorado say they are backing off their fiery criticism of conservative U.S. Senate candidate Bob Schaffer for not supporting a controversial state ballot measure. Or are they gearing up for Round Two?

“Egg-as-Person” Backers Call Out Conservative Wimps

Wendy Norris

Proponents of Colorado's "egg as a person" initiative have just one month left to submit petitions to the Colorado secretary of state to certify the measure for the Nov. 4 ballot. Now, in the frenzy of the signature-gathering push the campaign is taking a decidedly more aggressive tone -- toward its own.

Dobson Takes His Marbles and Goes Home

Wendy Norris

This afternoon, Focus on the Family Action issued a strongly-worded press statement that Rev. James Dobson "cannot, and will not, vote for Sen. John McCain."

The cultural outreach arm of Focus on the Family, the Colorado Springs-based evangelical religious center and publishing powerhouse, relayed Dobson's statement, which it stressed, was a personal opinion and not made on behalf of the tax-exempt nonprofit ministry.

"I am deeply disappointed the Republican Party seems poised to select a nominee who did not support a Constitutional amendment to protect the institution of marriage, voted for embryonic stem-cell research to kill nascent human beings, opposed tax cuts that ended the marriage penalty, has little regard for freedom of speech, organized the Gang of 14 to preserve filibusters in judicial hearings, and has a legendary temper and often uses foul and obscene language.

I am convinced Sen. McCain is not a conservative, and in fact, has gone out of his way to stick his thumb in the eyes of those who are. He has sounded at times more like a member of the other party. McCain actually considered leaving the GOP caucus in 2001, and approached John Kerry about being Kerry's running mate in 2004. McCain also said publicly that Hillary Clinton would make a good president. Given these and many other concerns, a spoonful of sugar does NOT make the medicine go down. I cannot, and will not, vote for Sen. John McCain, as a matter of conscience.

But what a sad and melancholy decision this is for me and many other conservatives. Should Sen. McCain capture the nomination as many assume, I believe this general election will offer the worst choices for president in my lifetime. I certainly can't vote for Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama based on their virulently anti-family policy positions. If these are the nominees in November, I simply will not cast a ballot for president for the first time in my life. These decisions are my personal views and do not represent the organization with which I am affiliated. They do reflect my deeply held convictions about the institution of the family, about moral and spiritual beliefs, and about the welfare of our country."

Much to the surprise of the conservative religious movement, Dobson also withheld an endorsement from fellow preacher Mike Huckabee's presidential bid at the Values Voter Summit last October, as reported by Colorado Confidential.

Mitt Romney's candidacy has not been well-received by religious leaders on the political left or right due to deep, long-standing theological differences between mainline Christians and the Church of Latter Day Saints, in which Romney is a prominent member.

While Dobson was not expected to throw his hat in the Romney camp, it has created a bit of a political pickle for him as Colorado's GOP establishment - long-time allies of Focus on the Family -  are publicly supporting the former Massachusetts governor.

Proposed Anti-Abortion Measure Draws Foes

Wendy Norris

The 35-year battle to overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v Wade decision is once again firmly planted in women's wombs. This time, instead of directing their wrath at women's clinics, abortion foes are targeting a much different constituency -- fertilized eggs.

Toxic Pollution Reporting Weakened

Wendy Norris

When does saving multibillion dollar companies a few bucks supersede the public's right to know about toxic emissions? The EPA, with a kick in the pants from the president's budget office, thinks it knows -- and it's now.

President’s Veto Kills Dems’ Ab-Only Fix

Wendy Norris

In one fell swoop, President Bush tells children he won't ensure they receive health care - but he will make sure they're at risk for sexually transmitted infections as a result of the abstinence-only programs his administration will continue to fund.

Colorado Ranks Low in Contraception Access

Wendy Norris

Colorado ranks 40th in the country on access to contraception. The state does not allow Medicaid coverage for family planning, and has no policy on access to emergency contraception. But is the tide turning?

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