Federal Judges Rule Unanimously Against Planned Parenthood
JANUARY 9, 2018 – In a resounding victory for pro-life Tennesseans, judges on the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals have rejected a pro-abortion effort to overturn the 2014 voter passage of “Amendment 1.”
“Although the subject of abortion rights will continue to be controversial in Tennessee and across our nation, it is time for uncertainty surrounding the people’s 2014 approval and ratification of Amendment 1 to be put to rest,” wrote Senior Judge David McKeague, a 2005 appointee of George W. Bush.
Passage of SJR 127, which placed the proposed constitutional amendment on the ballot, and Amendment 1 were the top priority and legislative goal of Tennessee Right to Life for more than 16 years. The key wording of Amendment 1 was in the beginning: “Nothing in this Constitution secures or protects a right to abortion or requires the funding of an abortion.”
Brian Harris, president of Tennessee Right to Life, said, “Today’s ruling is vindication of the state’s amendment process and victory for the thousands of pro-life Tennesseans who sacrificed to see Amendment 1 passed.
“We are grateful to the legislators who placed the amendment on the ballot, to voters who approved it, and to the Attorney General, Secretary of State, and Coordinator of Elections who all worked tirelessly to defend it,” added Harris. “The voices of Tennessee’s voters have been heard and, as a result, public policy decisions on the matter of abortion can be rightly debated and determined by the people’s representatives.”
Amendment 1 was made necessary by Planned Parenthood of Middle Tennessee v. Sundquist, a radical pro-abortion decision by the Tennessee Supreme Court in 2000, which wrongly declared a so-called “fundamental right to abortion” in the Tennessee Constitution thereby making enforcement of common-sense protections impossible in Tennessee.
Tennessee Right to Life expresses profound gratitude to the many supporters, advocates, and voters who sacrificed to see placed on the ballot and passed by public vote.