The FBI has opened a domestic violent extremism investigation into recent attacks on pro-life organizations that have come as the Supreme Court is expected to issue a landmark decision on abortion rights, the bureau said Friday.
"The FBI is investigating a series of attacks and threats targeting pregnancy resource centers and faith-based organizations across the country," the FBI said in a statement first reported by Fox News. "The FBI takes all threats seriously and we continue to work closely with our law enforcement partners and will remain vigilant to protect our communities."
The FBI’s statement comes after Republican lawmakers clamored for immediate action from the Justice Department to prosecute these violent acts as domestic terrorism.
Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) called on Attorney General Merrick Garland to resign Thursday in a letter that blasted the Department of Justice for its perceived inaction after an anarchist terrorist group called Jane's Revenge claimed responsibility for several attacks against pro-life groups.
In his letter, Cotton urged the DOJ to investigate a string of firebombings and other acts of vandalism against churches, pro-life pregnancy centers, and other anti-abortion groups in recent weeks. He noted that the anarchist group Jane's Revenge has taken credit for at least 16 criminal acts targeting pro-life groups and has promised to escalate its campaign of violence.
"Houses of worship and pro-life pregnancy centers are under attack," Cotton wrote to Garland. "The Family Research Council has compiled a list of more than 50 attacks against churches, pro-life pregnancy centers, and other pro-life groups in the past few weeks. A left-wing extremist group called 'Jane’s Revenge' has taken credit for many of these attacks, including firebombings and grotesque acts of vandalism."
Cotton cited a terrorist threat Jane's Revenge published Tuesday that declared "open season" on so-called "anti-choice" groups and promised "increasingly drastic measures" that "may not come in the form of something so easily cleaned up as fire and graffiti."
"What is the Department of Justice doing to protect Americans from these violent attacks?" Cotton asked. "At a minimum, you should bring federal charges against the perpetrators, where appropriate, and investigate 'Jane’s Revenge' as a domestic terrorist organization," he demanded.
"If you are unwilling to protect Americans from these attacks, you should resign—although, in my opinion, you should resign in any case," Cotton wrote.
The letter included a list of more than a dozen attacks against churches and pro-life organizations that Jane's Revenge has claimed responsibility for:
- May 7 - St. John XXIII Catholic Church in Ft. Collins, Colorado, has its windows smashed and is vandalized with the message, "My Body My Choice," plus an anarchist symbol.
- May 8 - Wisconsin Family Action in Madison, Wisconsin, is firebombed and vandalized with the threat, "if abortions aren't safe, then you aren't either."
- May 8 - The Loreto House Pregnancy & Parenting Resource Center in Denton, Texas, is vandalized with the messages "Forced birth is murder" and "Not a clinic."
- May 13 - The Alpha Pregnancy Center in Reisterstown, Maryland, is vandalized with the messages "Jane's Revenge" and "If abortions aren't safe neither are you."
- May 14 - BirthRight pregnancy center in Frederick, Maryland, is vandalized with the messages "Defend Roe" and "F-k Fake Clinic."
- May 21 - Four churches in Olympia, Washington, are vandalized with messages, including "If abortions aren't safe then neither are you," "Abort the church," and "God loves abortion."
- May 27 - Next Step Pregnancy Services has its windows smashed and is vandalized with the threat "If abortion isn't safe, you aren't either."
- May 30 - The Respect Life Office in Hollywood, Florida, is vandalized with the messages "Jane's Revenge," "If abortions aren't safe then niether [sic] are you," and anarchist symbols."
- May 30 - The Dove Medical Pregnancy Center in Eugene, Oregon, is vandalized with the messages "From Jane," "Not a clinic," "Abortion is healthcare," and communist and anarchist symbols.
- June 2 - Agape Pregnancy Center in Des Moines, Iowa, has its windows smashed and is vandalized with the messages "God loves abortions" and "fake clinic."
- June 3 - The Capitol Hill Pregnancy Center in Washington, D.C., is vandalized with eggs, red paint, and a message stating "Jane's Revenge."
- June 7 - Mountain Area Pregnancy Services in Asheville, North Carolina, has its windows smashed and is vandalized with the messages "No forced birth" and "If abortions aren't safe, neither are you!"
- June 7 - CompassCare pregnancy center in Buffalo, New York, is firebombed and vandalized with the message "Jane was here."
- June 8 - Options360 pregnancy center in Vancouver, Washington, is vandalized with red paint and the message "Jane's Revenge."
- June 11 - The Gresham Pregnancy Resource Center in Gresham, Oregon, is firebombed.
More than 120 House Republicans have also called on Garland and the FBI to swiftly investigate and prosecute recent attacks on pro-life centers and work to prevent future violence.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) separately sent a similar letter to Garland Wednesday stating that "the DOJ has not been faithful to its promise of ensuring the public’s safety against these violent, radical activists."
The White House responded to Jane's Revenge's terrorist threat Wednesday afternoon in a statement provided to the Daily Wire.
“Violence and destruction of property have no place in our country under any circumstances, and the President denounces this,” White House assistant press secretary Alexandra LaManna said.
“We should all agree that actions like this are completely unacceptable regardless of our politics,” she added.