MADISON, Wis. — Vandals struck an anti-abortion group’s office in Wisconsin, apparently setting a fire after a Molotov cocktail thrown into the building failed to ignite, authorities said.
Flames were seen coming from Wisconsin Family Action’s office shortly after 6 a.m. Sunday, and the fire was being investigated as arson. It wasn’t immediately clear who vandalized the building, but the message “If abortions aren’t safe then you aren’t either” was spray-painted on the exterior.
No one was hurt.
“It appears a specific nonprofit that supports anti-abortion measures was targeted,” Madison Police Chief Shon Barnes said in a statement. Police planned a Monday afternoon news conference to provide an update on the investigation.
The vandalism came days after a leak of a draft opinion suggested the U.S. Supreme Court was on course to overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion.
The president of the lobbying group, Julaine Appling, said she considers the fire a “direct threat against us.” She said people could have been hurt if they had been working in the office at the time.
Appling said her group won’t be intimidated.
“We will repair our offices, remain on the job, and build an even stronger grassroots effort,” Appling said. “We will not back down. We will not stop doing what we are doing. Too much is at stake.”
Politicians from both parties swiftly condemned the vandalism.
“We condemn violence and hatred in all forms, including the actions at Wisconsin Family Action in Madison,” Gov. Tony Evers, a Democrat, said in a tweet. “We reject violence against any person for disagreeing with another’s view. Violence is not the way forward. Hurting others is never the answer.”
Sen. Ron Johnson, a Republican, said the actions shouldn’t be tolerated.
“This attack is abhorrent and should be condemned by all,” Johnson said.
- TIME's 100 Most Influential People of 2022
- Employers Take Note: Young Workers Are Seeking Jobs with a Higher Purpose
- Signs Are Pointing to a Slowdown in the Housing Market—At Last
- Welcome to the Era of Unapologetic Bad Taste
- As the Virus Evolves, COVID-19 Reinfections Are Going to Keep Happening
- A New York Mosque Becomes a Refuge for Afghan Teens Who Fled Without Their Families
- High Gas Prices are Oil Companies' Fault says Ro Khanna, and Democrats Should Go After Them
- Two Million Cases: COVID-19 May Finally Force North Korea to Open Up