Abortion ban off the books in Michigan for now

The judge’s ruling can be appealed
Abortion rights could be on the November ballot in Michigan, but for now, a ban has not been enforced.
Published: Sep. 7, 2022 at 10:09 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - Abortion rights could be on the November ballot in Michigan, but for now, a ban has not been enforced.

Court of Claims Judge Elizabeth Gleicher ruled Michigan’s 1931 anti-abortion law violates the constitution in two ways, and therefore, it cannot be enforced by the Attorney General or county prosecutors.

“In order for someone to seek charges, there has to be a statute that says that this specific thing is illegal. Anything in this state is legal unless there is a law that says that it’s not. So, right now, the law that allowed prosecutors to seek charges has been deemed unconstitutional,” said Sarissa Montague of Levine and Levine.

Montague said “this is a very specific ruling” – it means people who assist with abortions cannot be prosecuted because there is no law in place that stops abortion access, or related services, in Michigan.

“Essentially, the court found that forcing someone to remain pregnant if they choose not to, destroys, they called it, this fear of bodily integrity and personal autonomy underlying the liberty component of the due process law,” said Montague.

The due process law claims that each person should have the ability to make choices for their own body.

Planned Parenthood said they have not stopped providing abortion services – even though the future of abortions is unclear.

“Abortion access in Michigan is protected. Michiganders and people who travel to our state for healthcare can still get the healthcare they need,” said Dr. Sarah Wallet of Planned Parenthood.

Right to Life Michigan said they will support motions made to defend Michigan’s 1931 abortion ban.

“So this really didn’t change anything. Today 95 babies will still die in abortion clinics and 95 more tomorrow and 95 yesterday. So the Gleicher decision didn’t really change anything on the ground,” said Genevieve Marnon of Right to Life Michigan.

The judge’s ruling can be appealed.

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