[Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: William J. Clinton (1995, Book I)]
[January 2, 1995]
[Page 1]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office www.gpo.gov]

Statement on Additional Steps To Prevent Violence at Abortion Clinics
January 2, 1995

    In America, the heart of constitutional government is the rule of 
law. Today, our commitment to the rule of law is being tested by those 
who believe that their opposition to abortion gives them the right to 
commit acts of violence, even murder, against their fellow citizens who 
seek only to exercise their constitutional right to choose or to assist 
others in exercising that right.
    I recognize and respect the range of deeply felt beliefs Americans 
hold on abortion. A continued vigorous debate over abortion is proper. 
Violence against those who hold differing opinions is not.
    Last year, Congress passed and I signed a law prohibiting violent 
interference with Americans who exercise their rights in this area. 
Because of continued violations of this law and the Constitution, I have 
today instructed the Department of Justice to: (1) direct each United 
States Attorney immediately to head a task force including Federal, 
State, and local law enforcement officials to formulate plans to address 
clinic security for all clinics in their jurisdiction; and (2) direct 
each U.S. Marshal to consult with all clinics in their jurisdiction to 
ensure that the clinics have all the information they need to 
communicate with appropriate Federal, State, and local law enforcement 
officials on a timely basis about potential threats. I have also asked 
the Attorney General to consult with law enforcement officials on any 
further steps that might be taken to address this serious problem.
    I applaud Americans of conscience who differ in their convictions on 
abortion but who stand united in their opposition to violence. As we 
begin a new year, let us all reaffirm our devotion to the rule of law 
and our respect for the diversity of opinion that rule protects.