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April 22, 2022

Pro-Life Groups Challenge Lawsuit Against Pro-Life Michigan Law

Planned Parenthood filed a lawsuit against a 1931 Michigan law banning abortion. This lawsuit was filed in anticipation that the upcoming Supreme Court decision in Dobbs v. Jackson might allow states to once again decide the legality of abortion for themselves. Right to Life Michigan and the Michigan Catholic Conference are challenging Planned Parenthood's lawsuit; arguing that the abortion giant has no legal standing.

Alliance Defending Freedom, which is representing the pro-life organizations, filed a friend-of-the-court brief on April 20 arguing that Planned Parenthood's lawsuit should be dismissed.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Attorney General Dana Nessel have both made public their opposition to the 1931 law. Whitmer has launched her own separate lawsuit in an attempt to get the Michigan Supreme Court to intervene more quickly. Nessel has stated that she would not enforce the law even if Roe v. Wade was overturned. This is the same administration that would supposedly be defending the abortion ban from Planned Parenthood's lawsuit.

ADF senior counsel John Bursch said in a statement,  

“Michigan’s elected officials have a duty to uphold the law and protect all their citizens, including the innocent lives of unborn children.” He added, “Yet what we are seeing is the state’s top attorney general engaged in an unacceptable effort to attack a pro-life law that has existed peaceably with the state constitution for more than half a century. “

“We urge the court to swiftly dismiss this case because it not only lacks jurisdiction—both sides of the case are arguing for the exact same outcome—but also because it is based on a hypothetical situation. No matter how someone feels about abortion, they should be gravely concerned that Michigan’s attorney general refuses to defend a validly enacted and longstanding law.”