Pennsylvania Republican gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano this weekend condemned the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s raid and arrest of Bucks County resident Mark Houck, a prominent pro-life activist.
According to a LifeSiteNews report citing Houck’s wife Ryan-Marie’s firsthand reaction to the SWAT team’s Friday-morning visit to the home where the two live with their seven children, between 25 and 30 armed agents arriving in approximately 15 vehicles surrounded the house.
“They started pounding on the door and yelling for us to open it,” Ryan-Marie said.
When the agents were let in, she recalled, they pointed their rifles at the couple and got into an argument about whether they needed to present a warrant to bring Mark to the federal building in Philadelphia. Agents eventually presented the documentation alleging Mark breached the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act; it suggested he attacked an abortion clinic escort. Houck, founder and president of the pro-family nonprofit The King’s Men, drives into Philadelphia each Wednesday to counsel women walking into clinics to seek abortions.
The Houcks’ recollection of the confrontation happened after a pro-abortion protester at 12th and Locust streets began saying untoward things to their 12-year-old son, including “your dad’s a fag.” Ryan-Marie said Mark responded by shoving the man to the ground to keep him away from their son.
Mastriano, who is running against Democratic state Attorney General Josh Shapiro to replace retiring governor Tom Wolf (D), characterized the federal Department of Justice (DOJ)-ordered visit as “continued weaponization of the FBI and persecution by Joe Biden’s DOJ … .” He rebuked federal prosecutors for reviving a case that the district court in Philadelphia already dismissed. He further lamented that the incident deeply disturbed Houck’s children.
“Citizens across the commonwealth of Pennsylvania join me in expressing our outrage at this early-morning raid executed on a young family,” Mastriano said in a statement. “This show of force carried out by the Biden regime against ordinary Americans is an abuse of power that stands against the fundamental principles on which our country was founded. As governor, I will not allow the police state of Joe Biden to enforce his persecution against his political enemies on sacred Pennsylvania soil. Not on my watch.”
At this writing, pro-life activists have raised nearly $120,000 for the Houck family via GiveSendGo.
Shapiro, meanwhile, has not criticized the federal government’s action, instead continuing to tout his pro-abortion bona fides.
“I’m pro-choice — which means I believe women deserve the right to make decisions about their own bodies,” the Democrat tweeted on Sunday. “Doug Mastriano disagrees — he wants to ban abortion outright [with] no exceptions for rape, incest, or the life of the mother. These are the facts.”
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Bradley Vasoli is managing editor of The Pennsylvania Daily Star. Follow Brad on Twitter at @BVasoli. Email tips to [email protected].
Photo “Doug Mastriano” by Senator Doug Mastriano. Background Photo “FBI Building” by cisko66. CC BY 3.0.