Legislative Action

ALERT - HB 40 (State funding of abortions) on the way to the Governor!

HB 40 - State Abortion Insurance / Public Aid Act -  ACTION ALERT Status: Passed the House and Senate, now goes to the Governor Sum...

August 12, 2016

Lawsuit Filed Against Gov. Rauner

The law firms of Alliance Defending Freedom and Chicago's Mauck & Baker attorney Noel Sterett have filed a lawsuit (The Pregnancy Care Center of Rockford v. Rauner) against Governor Rauner in Winnebago County, Illinois on behalf of Pregnancy Care Center in Rockford, Dr. Anthony Caruso who runs A Bella Baby OB/GYN, and Aid for Women pregnancy resource center.

This is in response to Governor Rauner signing Senate Bill 1564 which forces medical professionals and pregnancy resource centers to discuss the "benefits" of and refer for abortions.

ADF sent a letter to Rauner in May on behalf of numerous pro-life physicians, pregnancy care centers, and pregnancy care center network organizations advising him that the bill, SB 1564, would violate federal law and therefore place federal funding, including Medicaid reimbursements, in jeopardy. ADF also warned legislators about the problems with the bill last year. The lawsuit claims the new law, which is actually an amendment to the existing Illinois Healthcare Right of Conscience Act, violates state law and the state constitution.

“Pro-life health care professionals shouldn’t be forced to hand out lists describing how to contact abortionists, yet that’s what this law mandates that they do,” explained ADF Senior Counsel Kevin Theriot. “If this profane amendment to Illinois’ conscience protection law remains on the books, doctors and medical staff committed to saving all lives will be forced to promote the killing of some children, women will lose access to doctors who unconditionally value human life, and pregnancy resource centers that offer free help and hope to pregnant women will be forced to refer to abortionists. This is the kind of government coercion that the state constitution, the state Religious Freedom Restoration Act, and the very law that was amended were all designed to prevent.”

The new law forces medical facilities and physicians who conscientiously object to involvement in abortions to adopt policies that provide women who ask for abortions with a list of providers “they reasonably believe may offer” them. Illinois law prohibits government from placing burdens on religious conscience without a compelling interest for doing so. Additionally, the Illinois Constitution protects “liberty of conscience,” saying that “no person shall be denied any civil or political right, privilege or capacity, on account of his religious opinions.” It also protects free speech, which includes the right not to be compelled by government to speak a message contrary to one’s own conscience.

More information is available at ADF's web site by clicking here.