Judge to hear challenge to Indiana’s comprehensive ban on abortion

By Dave Andrusko

Special Judge Kelsey Hanlon, who is overseeing a challenge to Indiana’s comprehensive abortion ban, will hear arguments from the two sides today. Hanlon declined to block SB 1 last week and it took effect September 15. On Friday, two judges recused themselves from hearing the case and neither judge offered an explanation.

“The ACLU of Indiana argues the abortion ban, passed by a special session of the General Assembly in August, violates state constitutional protections for the rights to privacy and equal privileges,” Brad Gibson reported for WISH-TV.

The Attorney General’s office strongly disagreed. “The constitutional text nowhere mentions abortion as a protected right, and Indiana history demonstrates abortion was regarded as criminal— not a cherished core value,” Rokita’s office wrote in its legal response.

“The plaintiffs (collectively, Planned Parenthood) urge the judiciary to recognize a novel, unwritten, historically unsupported right to abortion under Article 1, Section 1 of the Indiana Constitution. … Planned Parenthood does not cite any history that supposedly demonstrates the existence of a right to privacy or abortion either.”

Indiana’s Senate Bill 1 was the first new protective pro-life law  passed by a state legislature following the June 24th overturn of Roe v. Wade.

The new law “also prohibits abortion clinics from providing any abortion care, leaving such services solely to hospitals or outpatient surgical centers owned by hospitals,” The Associated Press’ Tom Davies reported.

He added, “Planned Parenthood, which operates four of Indiana’s seven licensed abortion clinics, has said it planned to keep those sites open for other medical services, while  operated by other providers faced possible closure.”

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