The Other McCain

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Carhart Victim Identified: N.Y. Woman Sought Abortion for ‘Fetal Abnormalities’

Posted on | February 11, 2013 | 62 Comments

Jennifer McKenna Morelli with her future husband in 2008

Oh, this is heartbreaking: Jill Stanek reports that the woman who died at Dr. LeRoy Carhart’s Maryland clinic was a 29-year-old kindergarten teacher. Jennifer McKenna Morbelli of New Rochelle, N.Y., taught at Church Street Elementary in White Plains. She was married, and this was a wanted pregnancy — she had already named her daughter Madison Leigh — but about two weeks ago, “Jennifer learned her daughter suffered from fetal anomalies.”

Need more heartbreaking cruelty? Morbelli’s obituary states:

A Funeral Mass will be celebrated on Wednesday 10am at Holy Name of Jesus in New Rochelle.

Yes — she was Catholic.

New York Times to stop ignoring this story in 3, 2, 1 . . .

UPDATE: Remember that there was originally a complete news blackout of this woman’s death in the mainstream media. Despite the fact that it occurred Thursday in the Montgomery County suburbs of D.C. — and was the subject of a Friday press conference by pro-life groups — the Washington Post‘s first coverage of the story was limited to a 350-word item inside Sunday’s Metro section.

UPDATE II: The victim’s June 2008 engagement was announced in the Morris (N.J.) News-Bee:

Lisa and Kevin McKenna of New Rochelle, N.Y., announce the engagement of their daughter, Jennifer McKenna, to Timothy James Morbelli, son of Kathryn and Mario Morbelli of Morris Plains, formerly of Randolph Township.
The future bride graduated from New Rochelle High School and the University of Delaware. She is a kindergarten teacher.
Her fiancé is a graduate of Randolph High School and the University of Delaware, Newark. He is attending the New York University Stern School of Business, pursuing a master’s degree. He is a risk and P&L credit derivative analyst with Credit Suisse in New York City.
A June 2009 wedding in Newport, R.I., is planned.

And now, a February 2013 funeral is planned. Her husband, family and friends ought to be remembered in everyone’s prayers.

UPDATE III: Jeff Quinton points out that Maryland’s Democratic governor has made the state a haven for Carhart’s deadly practice:

The question must be asked: Is the administration of Governor Martin O’Malley partly responsible for her death? . ..
Under Governor Martin O’Malley, Carhart was granted a license to perform abortions in Maryland despite his track record and despite lies on his application to the medical board . . .

Bob Belvedere calls Carhart “The Germantown Butcher,” and Pete Da Tech Guy says that “late-term abortionist” is the perfect career for those who finish last in their class at medical school.

UPDATE IV: The bland phrase “late-term abortion” does not adequately capture the gruesomeness of these atrocities, which are legal in only four nations: China, North Korea, Canada and the United State. Jennifer Borelli was in her 33rd week of pregnancy — that is to say, eight months pregnant, and just six weeks from full term — and Steven Ertelt’s report gives some idea of the horrible multi-day ordeal necessary to terminate a pregnancy at that late stage:

According to information the pro-life group Operation Rescue released to LifeNews on Friday, the then-unnamed woman arrived at Germantown Reproductive Health Center on Sunday to start the abortion process. Local pro-life advocates protesting outside saw her every day until [Thursday], and described her as appearing “pale and weak.”
Early Thursday morning, the woman began suffering chest pain and other discomforts, the group informed LifeNews. Her attempts to reach Carhart were unsuccessful. The woman was taken by her family from her hotel to a nearby hospital emergency room at approximately 5:00 a.m. Efforts by hospital staff to contact Carhart or get informational assistance from the abortion clinic were unsuccessful.
Operation Rescue says the abortion patient suffered massive internal bleeding into her abdominal cavity. She slipped into a Code Blue condition approximately six times before finally succumbing to her injuries at around 9:30 a.m. The case has been placed with the Medical Examiner for further investigation.

This is legal. The state of Maryland gave Dr. Carhart a license to do this. Federal law provides special protections to such clinics against protests.

How do these “pro-choice” people sleep at night?

UPDATE V: Operation Rescue reports:

Efforts by family and hospital staff to reach Carhart when Mrs. Morbelli’s condition worsened were unsuccessful and [Carhart’s unavailability] may have contributed to her death.
“This is a case of not only shoddy practices, but patient abandonment that we believe rises to the level of criminal conduct,” said [Operation Rescue president Troy] Newman. “We will press for criminal charges in this case, in addition to Board discipline.”
In 2005, another Carhart patient, 19-year old Christin Gilbert, also died from the risky late-term abortion procedure employed by Carhart and other third trimester abortionists across the nation. Operation Rescue has documented nearly a dozen additional serious complications over the past three years related to this same procedure, raising serious questions about its safety.
“We urge the immediate passage of laws at the state level banning late-term abortions in order to protect other women and their viable babies from unnecessary injury and death,” said Newman.

Just FYI, the hospital where Jennifer Morbelli died is the same hospital where my three youngest children were born.






  • DarthLevin

    I’m sure the NYT will notice now, along with a call for the College of Cardinals to bring Christianity into the 21st century by electing Amanda Marcotte as the new Pope. For the New Tone and Civility!!

  • Evi L. Bloggerlady

    I am sorry for the McKenna family. They are in my prayers. I wish they had chosen differently but they have nothing but my sympathy.

  • Rita

    I don’t understand why this wasn’t attended to in a hospital – I’m not educated on the topic of pregnancy so this is a question not a judgment. This is so sad.

  • ThomasD

    Perhaps she was raised Catholic, maybe her parents are still practicing. I find it hard to believe she was practicing. Participating in abortion is automatic excommunication, latae sententiae is the exact term.

    According to those counselors, Sunday is when Carhart kills late-term babies by lethal injection into the heart through the mothers’ abdominal wall.

    Somehow I doubt she had time to reconcile, but hopefully she did.

  • Christy Waters

    I’m just curious to know what kind of fetal abnormalities the baby had that would warrant such an extreme action. RIP, both mother and child.

  • gloogle gloogle

    Abortion is wrong, for a lot of reasons. One of which resulted in this poor girl’s death.

    RIP. May God have mercy on all of our souls.

  • Bob Belvedere

    -Thanks for the link, Stacy.

    -This is, indeed, a real tragedy – in the truest sense of the word.

  • robertstacymccain

    It’s hard to imagine, really. And the grief of her family must be beyond description.

  • robertstacymccain

    Operation Rescue says that, according to Morbelli’s family, her unborn daughter was pre-natally diagnosed as suffering from some kind of disorder that causes seizures.

  • Steve Spangler

    and I know of too many circumstances in my own circle where the “fetal abnormality” turned out to be dirt on the lens or a goof in the lab.

  • Zilla of the Resistance

    I was 34 weeks pregnant when my daughter was born, and she was perfectly fine. I was 30 weeks pregnant when my son was born, as a preemie he spent 9 days in NICU before I could take him home, but my point is that if this woman had delivered, instead of aborted, her baby at 33 weeks, the baby most likely would have been born very much alive and the mother would probably be alive too.

    Think about that, and recognize the horror that I feel seeing this story.

  • Roxeanne de Luca

    Such a young, lovely girl. Now she’s dead and her baby is dead.

    One day, society will look back and wonder what decent person tolerated the barbaric atrocity known as abortion. People of faith believe that God will judge America for permitting this.

  • Evi L. Bloggerlady

    I am not going to comment on her motivations, other than to say I disagree. I do not know enough of the facts to go beyond that.

  • Zilla of the Resistance

    Prenatal testing is known for giving false positives, the baby actually may have been just fine before she was killed along with her mother. And I know people with epilepsy and other seizure disorders who have lived long, happy, and productive lives.

  • Christy Waters

    WHAT?!?! If that’s true, it sounds like that’s a disorder that could’ve been easily treated after birth, assuming it was diagnosed correctly! I just have to wonder if this woman sought a second opinion or was given ANY proper council at all before she made this decision. Wow! I’m just completely at a loss.

  • ThomasD

    It’s not possible to perform an EEG on a baby in the womb. Suspicion of seizure activity is based upon observed movement during ultrasound and electronic fetal monitoring (which can only reads heartbeat and uterine activity.

    If true, this is a horrific tragedy.

  • Evi L. Bloggerlady

    Excellent choice. In Bizarro World.

    If the charming Ms. Marcotte is unavailable, there is always Michelle Obama, Nancy Pelosi (who is supposedly Catholic),

    Or alternatively Andrew Sullivan!

  • Pingback: Woman who died at the hands of abortionist sought abortion because her child had “fetal abnormalities” « The Daley Gator()

  • sablegsd

    Her OB didn’t know until 8 months there were abnormalities? I find that hard to believe.

  • sablegsd

    I have a dog that has seizures. I give him medication and put up with his ongoing confusion about asking to go out AFTER he has gone in his “diaper.” Because I love him.

  • laura_PH

    Exactly! Late term abortion is not about the “health of the mother.” C-sections are faster and safer – better controlled- than a late term abortion. It’s about killing an inconvenient child. Just heartbreaking…

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  • Remomny

    You have no idea what she went through. You have no right comparing your story with Jennifer’s. Jennifer was a lovely, sweet, wonderful person who I’m sure agonized over the decision. Isn’t sitting in judgement of others considered a son? How dare you. Looking to win points with your post derived from ignorance and hatred at the expense of a woman who has died and her lost child.

  • Remomny

    pardon me-sin not son

  • Remomny

    don’t you have anything better to do than judge this poor woman based in partial truths and mostly inaccuracies. You make her or to be a monster and he was the exact opposite. You people are atrocities.

  • Charles G Hill

    My own daughter was reported by a medical crew as having strangled on the cord.

    Today she’s 34 and has three children of her own.

  • Mdc

    You people are disgusting. You know nothing about this girl or anything she and her family and child were going through. Try taking all of your negativity and time you waste online judging others and do something positive in your own lives, regardless of your stance on the issues. The sad truth is a young woman and her child are deceased and it’s her family and friends who knew and loved her who are suffering. And for those who have said they have been in the same position as Jennifer, well then be thankful that you can wake up and hold your child every morning. Only God can judge us.

  • Clever

    I am not against abortion but I think this doctor should be arrested. It sounds like an awful scam this guy has going on and now this wonderful lady is gone and her baby. I am just curious – who referred her to this doctor? He/she should be looked into as well.

  • Clever

    I agree with you and I my heart goes out to her husband and rest of the family and friends. I just feel like she should not be judged but these doctors that allow these things to happen should be judged. They take advantage of innocent sweat people and that makes me sick!

  • Eric Ashley

    You’re sure she agonized over her decision? But you are not in her shoes, which is the exact same ‘crime’ you accuse Zilla of. It sounds like Zilla had a very similar experience and denying her experience is unkind.

    Also, I have a great son, who just spoke to me a few minutes ago. He was born via C-section at 28 weeks, if I remember right. Had to spend six weeks in the NICU.

    As to judgement, the command is not to engage in hasty judgement, but to judge all things as best as I can describe things in the Bible off the top of my head with my layman’s knowledge.

    I hear pain in your voice. Jesus can heal those who acknowledge their need and trust that He will provide.

  • Sharon Mitchell

    I wouldn’t say the poster was ignorant. She wrote that she had experienced a birth that was less than normal. She delivered a preemie. Based on that knowledge and life experience she was relating her own event into the situation. The poster was merely stating that had the aborted fetus been delivered, the odds are very good it would have survived. I didn’t read anything about hatred or judgement of others. She made a reasonable statement based on fact. What a beautiful woman, the loss of her life is a very sad event for her family and friends I am sure. A very sad story indeed.

  • Eric Ashley

    You can be pro-abortion, and still think to yourself ‘man these docs are nothing but quacks, and this whole industry needs a top to bottom review to ensure safe practises’ and ‘isn’t it curious how safety seems to go out the window when its a Dem favored industry?’

  • Sharon Mitchell

    I pray for her family and friends. How devastating for them all.

  • t-dahlgren

    Are there five u’s in judgementalism, like the five a’s in racism??

    That’s all you lefties have, name calling. Which ultimately is nothing more than your own special, select, highly reserved, and restricted access form of judging people who have the temerity to disagree with you.

    The real difference here is that Stacy hasn’t killed his child, or cost himself his own life.

  • t-dahlgren

    We know that she chose to have an abortion. Some people would never make that choice. She was her babies judge and jury, then hired Carhart to be the executioner.

    And we all get judged every day in myriad ways, so don’t pretend that this situation is all that different.

    Yes her soul is in God’s hands, but this discussion is about what happens on Earth, and we do very much exert control over that.

  • sablegsd

    Because the butcher and his crew don’t want to share the blood money.

  • Todd

    The death of anyone after a surgery is tragic and it is in this case.

    But a question you should be asking yourselves is if no less a person than Rick Santorum would have opted for an abortion for his wife in their tragic case in 1996 – shouldn’t the option be there for other people as well?

    Or do you believe Rick Santorum is wrong in his personal pro-choice sentiment?

    “Rick Santorum did tell the Inquirer that “if that had to be the call, we would have induced labor if we had to,” under the understanding that the fetus was going to die anyway and intervening would save Karen’s life.”

  • Remomny

    Just mind your own business. I knew Jennifer. She was a lovely, educated, wonderful person that wouldn’t have made a hasty decision especially with all those supporting her. We have no right questioning her decisions. The criminal here is that doctor who, by the sound of it, knew he messed up bad and ran like a coward. He killed Jennifer in my opinion.

  • Remomny

    I’m Jewish, thank you.

  • ThomasD

    Allow these things to happen?

    That’s a very passive way of describing something that is very active, and very specific.

    Being distracted by a cell phone conversation and running over someone in a crosswalk is perhaps something that is allowed to happen.

    Driving a hypodermic needle several inches into a mother’s abdomen in order to place it directly within the heart of a baby, then injecting cardiotoxic drugs to stop that beating heart is hardly passive or inattentive.

  • ThomasD

    I’ll assume you are merely misinformed, not trafficking in a known smear campaign.

    Do you understand the difference between inducing labor and what Carhart does?

    Inducing labor is done in an attempt to save lives, Carhart purposely kills the baby before making any attempts to remove it.

    If Morbelli’s baby was posing a risk to her health they could have induced labor, understanding that they might not be able to save the baby once it was born. That is not an abortion.

    That’s not what they chose to do.

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  • ThomasD

    Carhart thinks it his business (both figuratively and literally) to tell people that killing their unborn child is safe and acceptable.

    Others beg to differ. Why do you have a problem with that?

  • Eric Ashley

    Well, the Prophets spoke of him, as did your King David. It was prophesied that he would be born in Bethleham, and that none of the bones in his body would be broken.

    His major Jewish enemies were the Sadducees who denied the ressurection of the dead (and thus disagreed with YWHH), and the Pharisees who added the new rules of man to the older rules of God and forgot the spirit of YWHH’s rules in their legalism.

    Your Messiah calls for you.

  • Kbh40blue

    A mother murdering her own child. To think that this is even legal, at 8 months, is beyond belief. We live in a self-indulgent world today. People think they can have whatever they want, whenever they want it even if that means killing a baby. God please pray for our society.

  • DaveO

    No, you didn’t know her, or you would have stopped her. And here you complain of Zilla having a fact-based opinion, but in your knowing the murdered woman, you did not stop her.
    Don’t complain about folks having fact-based opinions, or any opinions whatsoever, before calling Carhart a murderer.

  • DaveO

    So who encouraged this former woman to drive all the way to Maryland for a pre-birth abortion? Who told her that abnormalities is the end of all life as she knew it (now the literal truth)? Did her husband play a part in it? Or, as is the case in abortions, the husbands/baby daddies aren’t permitted to interfere?
    So who told this woman that abortion at any time is the answer?

  • Mdc

    I’m not turning this into a political or ethical debate. I’m saying this was a tragic event, regardless of anyone’s stance and her family and friends are suffering from a life-changing event that I pray to God I, nor anyone on here, has to endure. As human beings show compassion and respect and keep her in your prayers and stop playing holier than thou.

  • zentgrad

    These news stories are making this mother sound like a saint in order to make carhart sound like the devil. in order for Carhart to remain in business women need to seek out his services…This woman made a choice that was right for her family and carhart made her choice possible. No one has the right to judge.

  • Todd

    Thanks for your response.

    But no, I am not misinformed; nor am I participating in a smear; and yes, I am aware of the salon article you referenced.

    It does make reference and contrast spontaneous abortions triggered by the body and abortions performed by a doctor. And I agree that according to that reporting no abortion was performed.

    My point was not that however.
    It was that Rick Santorum wanted to have the choice to have a medical procedure (induced labor) which would result in the death of the unborn fetus in order to preserve the health of the mother. What this is called is a semantic question – but the result is the same.

    I want Rick Santorum and his wife Karen to have the right to make that very personal and private decision and I want everyone else to have that right as well.