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Last minute legal maneuvers by the ACLU keep Indiana comprehensive pro-life law from taking effect

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In a last-minute effort to prevent the enactment of Senate Enrolled Act 1, pro-abortionists in Indiana have resorted to delaying tactics. Senate Bill 1, which was signed by Governor Eric Holcomb in August 2022, permits abortions in instances of rape or incest, in the event of a significant risk to the life of the mother, or when fatal fetal anomalies are present.

The Chicago Sun Times elucidated that the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana petitioned the state’s high court on Monday to maintain the suspension of Indiana’s near-total abortion ban while it pursues a narrower preliminary injunction in a trial court to delineate the scope of the ban’s exemption that permits women facing serious health risks to obtain abortions.

A month ago, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled that the law does not contravene the state Constitution. In his written opinion, Justice Derek R. Molter stated that the state constitution “protects a woman’s right to an abortion that is necessary to protect her life or to protect her from a serious health risk.” However, he noted that the General Assembly retains broad legislative discretion for determining whether and to what extent to prohibit abortions.

However, according to Casey Smith, the injunction remains in place until the Supreme Court certifies its decision, thus preventing the new law from taking effect. The earliest that a decision can be certified is 30 days after the issuance of a ruling. As the June 30 ruling was not certified by Monday, it will not take effect on Tuesday.

In other words, the ACLU of Indiana had a month to petition the court to rehear the case and they did so without delay. Furthermore, the ACLU of Indiana filed for a rehearing on Monday, thereby postponing the date of certification. This was reported by Brandon Smith.

The providers have petitioned the court to once again temporarily suspend the ban, which had been in effect since last year. The ACLU has indicated that it will submit a new request to block the law at the trial court level, in accordance with the narrower guidelines set forth by the Supreme Court in its recent decision. The providers contend that the law’s definition of a serious health risk is more restrictive than what the Supreme Court permitted under the state constitution.

The enactment of the law is contingent upon the Indiana Supreme Court’s resolution of the ACLU’s petition.

While the ACLU of Indiana conceded that the Indiana Supreme Court had held that the trial judge “erred” in its conclusion that the plaintiffs were likely to prevail on the claim that the ban violates this portion of the constitution, the ACLU argued that this did not preclude the possibility that this constitutionally protected right “may be broader than the current statutory exception.”


Daniel Miller is responsible for nearly all of National Right to Life News' political writing.

With the election of Donald Trump to the U.S. presidency, Daniel Miller developed a deep obsession with U.S. politics that has never let go of the political scientist. Whether it's the election of Joe Biden, the midterm elections in Congress, the abortion rights debate in the Supreme Court or the mudslinging in the primaries - Daniel Miller is happy to stay up late for you.

Daniel was born and raised in New York. After living in China, working for a news agency and another stint at a major news network, he now lives in Arizona with his two daughters.

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