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Jackley Newspeak: Effort to Obtain Women’s Out-of-State Medical Records Not an Effort to Obtain Out-of-State Medical Records

Attorney General Marty Jackley assures us if the Biden Administration heeds the letter he signed calling on the federal Department of Health and Human Services not to adopt a rule prohibiting states from rifling through medical records to prosecute people seeking legal abortions in other states, he won’t go rifling through women’s medical records:

South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley said Wednesday his office is not seeking to obtain medical records of state residents who obtain a legal abortion in another state.

“…because the state Legislature and the Governor signed into law in South Dakota, that a female obtaining an abortion cannot be prosecuted. So that’s already that, that in my opinion, was the law before and the Legislature made it very clear. And so that is not what’s going on here,” Jackley said… [Rae Yost, “Jackley: Abortion Not Focus of Medical Records,” KELO-TV, 2023.08.02].

Actually, that is what’s going on here. Read the letter:

Suppose that state officials had reason to believe that an abortion provider deliberately performed an abortion in violation of state law, resulting in serious injury to the woman, and that the provider then falsified medical records and referred the woman to an out-of-state provider to cover it up. State officials would clearly have a basis to investigate that provider for “a potential violation of law.” 45 C.F.R. § 164.103. But under the proposed rule, a regulated entity with relevant evidence could deny requests for that information based on its assumption that the “care” was “lawful” as reflected in the falsified records or as provided out of state [Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch, letter to Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra, 2023.06.16].

The letter is all about abortion and about obtaining the medical records that would show women had abortions. Jackley is evading his plain intent in signing the letter and resisting DHHS’s effort to protect women’s medical privacy.

In further Newspeak, Jackley says anyone who points out that plain meaning is just trying to score political points (you bastards):

“Again, I realize that the ACLU and other organizations have used this as a political opportunity, a fundraising opportunity. And in my mind, that’s not appropriate,” Jackley said [Yost, 2023.08.02].

Jackley is the one trying to score political points. Even if he promises never to prosecute any woman for exercising her bodily autonomy, he knows that resisting this federal rule makes him look good with his base for 2026 and helps scare more women away from seeking abortions in other states that recognize their rights.


  1. Tim 2023-08-03 07:56

    BS, lying out his teeth.

  2. Donald Pay 2023-08-03 08:10

    Signing a letter is easy. Explaining away fascism isn’t.

  3. Eve Fisher 2023-08-03 08:55

    It might be time for the women of South Dakota to start doing what the women of Indiana did to Mike Pence. Back in 2016, as Gov of Indiana, Pence signed a strict abortion law which included a ban on abortion because of fetal disability or abnormality (which is why in so many states women whose fetus has anencephaly – no skull and no brain – are being required to carry the baby to term to watch it die immediately). It also included a requirement that fetal tissue from both abortions AND miscarriages must be either cremated or buried. (News flash: Most miscarriages are flushed down a toilet, because they happen at home.)
    So, women started “Periods for Pence”, urging women from all over the state to send in emails, tweets, and phone calls to the governor’s office reporting the progression of their menstrual flow, cramps, birth control, tampon discomfort, bloating, and even menopausal advancements. And a whole lot of them started sending in their used tampons and sanitary napkins.
    So if Jackley and his fellow AGs win this, ladies, you know what to do – send your used sanitary products to the AGs office, so they can check them for bad things.

  4. jerry 2023-08-03 09:00

    Ms. Fisher, they could also send those used sanitary products to the governors office as well, along with all the other information regarding periods, etc.

  5. larry kurtz 2023-08-03 09:52

    No wonder the Founders wanted to keep catholics out of American politics: they answer to the Pope first and the US Constitution second.

  6. Loren 2023-08-03 10:35

    This appears to be Jackley’s version of Trump’s, “What you are seeing and what you are reading is NOT what is happening?” Holy moly, I didn’t think anyone could twist themselves into more shapes that John Thune, but here is Marty. “If something happened here, but not there, because of this rather than that, then someone, somewhere, should take action for something.” Did I get that correct? @#$%^&*!

  7. All Mammal 2023-08-03 17:19

    When will these insatiable sickos get it through their entitled little nug bones how crackheaded they sound? Just because you are white man from SD who won AG without opposition doesn’t mean squat. That’s like thinking your shirt that says, “Mom’s bravest little man” is going to get you into Delta Force. It is ridiculous.

    With statements like that, they’re never going to take anything from SD seriously. Back to the kid table.

  8. Dicta 2023-08-03 19:18

    How is such a law not a per se violation of HIPAA? Particularly when the “crime” they are searching for is not a crime in the state that provided it?

  9. grudznick 2023-08-03 20:52

    Mr. Jackley was probably in the Delta Force. If not, he probably has his own Delta Force. If not, he will probably get his own Delta Force.

  10. Lars Aanning 2023-08-04 00:21

    Whatever the outcome, Jackley will likely always cover for any state employee who had gotten or needs an abortion in the same way he covered up the medical negligence by state employees that caused the death of 17-year old Brady Folkens at STAR Academy in 2013…

  11. Jenny 2023-08-04 07:47

    Oh my god, SD has the most abhorrent shameless politicians. So now, SDs gestapo top police officer, jackass Jackley, wants to go snooping through the medical records of SD women who choose to come to MN for certain health care procedures. Unbelievable, you just can’t make this stuff up.
    MN will fight for your reproductive autonomy rights, but women in red commie states, please stop the madness and vote these commies out.

  12. Algebra 2023-08-04 21:08

    well God forbid anybody collect any statistics on how many women are leaving the state to get abortions. We certainly don’t want to know.
    And if there are providers in SD practicing medicine without a license or performing prohibited procedures like sex changes on minors, we dont want to know about that, either..

  13. cibvet 2023-08-04 23:58

    Maybe it is time for a female AG who will go after the medical records of the males who use viagra, or spread STD’s and maybe include
    published names of those who commit adultery since it could have consequences in court.

  14. e platypus onion 2023-08-05 12:02

    Late on Friday, a judge in Texas issued an pre-trial injunction limiting the reach of the state’s recent anti-abortion measures.

    While Texas law technically allows ending a pregnancy in emergency, medically necessary situations, patients seeking care under that provision have been denied, as doctors fear fines, imprisonment, or the loss of their license for being involved in any kind of abortion. The judge clarified that a doctor can decide when their patient needs an emergency abortion, and held that the women who brought the suit with the assistance of the Center for Reproductive Rights had had a legal right to an abortion in Texas. Under the law, one plaintiff in the suit was denied an abortion and developed sepsis; another was forced to give birth to a non-viable fetus. Others opted to travel out of state for care.

    Travis County district judge Jessica Mangrum also held that SB8, the state law that encourages Texas citizens to investigate and turn in people who seek or help enable an abortion, is unconstitutional because it violates a provision in the state’s bill of rights banning unreasonable fines and cruel and unusual punishment. Mother Jones‘s Pema Levy wrote about the law last year:

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