Court: Michigan prosecutors can enforce abortion ban
LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - A recent court ruling on Michigan’s 1931 abortion ban could have major consequences for the state’s residents.
Monday, the Michigan Court of Appeals ruled that prosecutors could start charging doctors providing abortion care in the state of Michigan. The order means the 1931 law banning all abortions except those done to protect the life of a pregnant person could theoretically take effect immediately.
Attorney General Dana Nessel commented on the ruling via social media.
“The Michigan Court of Appeals has just ruled that MI’s 83 county prosecutors can now begin enforcing the abortion ban,” Nessel wrote. “Dem prosecuting attorneys have committed to refuse to enforce the ban, and the injunction still applies to my department.”
However, Planned Parenthood representatives said in an email that it doesn’t matter which way county prosecutors lean yet, since the law states there’s a window for appeal.
“The injunction barring enforcement of Michigan’s 1931 criminal abortion ban remains in effect and applies to all Michigan county prosecutors,” Planned Parenthood wrote.
The injunction preventing enforcement of the 1931 law will stay in effect for all county prosecutors until the window to appeal has passed. Under Michigan court rule MCR 7.215(F)(1)(a), “the Court of Appeals judgment is effective after the expiration of the time for filing an application for leave to appeal to the Supreme Court, or, if such an application is filed, after the disposition of the case by the Supreme Court.”
That means that the Michigan Court of Appeals ruling cannot take effect during the 21-day appeal window.
“Planned Parenthood of Michigan will continue to evaluate our legal options and remains committed to protecting abortion access in Michigan,” representatives wrote. “Planned Parenthood of Michigan will continue to provide abortion services in accordance with the law. PPMI patients can keep their appointments and our doors remain open.”
In response, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has filed a request for a temporary restraining order regarding enforcement of the ruling.
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