judge Temporarily Barred County Prosecutors From Enforcing Michigan's Abortion prohibition

Judge Temporarily Barred County Prosecutors From Enforcing Michigan’s Abortion prohibition

Oakland County Judge Jacob Cunningham declared on Friday that the plaintiffs have established that the state’s almost century-old prohibition on abortion is unsafe and creates a constitutional crisis after hearing arguments for and against the preliminary injunction for two days. The existing 1931 statute, according to Cunningham, “individually and collectively” hurts everyone in Michigan and would continue to do so if he did not issue a preliminary injunction.

Two million Michiganders are of childbearing age, according to plaintiffs and their witnesses at the evidentiary hearing. According to Cunningham, “it is obvious to the court that only one group is disadvantaged by this statute: women and those capable of bearing a child.” The judge finally rejected the testimony of two witnesses who had been called by the defence on Thursday,

 

claiming that their reliability had been seriously questioned and that both their testimony and work demonstrated strong prejudice. If the 1931 statute outlawing abortion is put on hold, the accused will suffer “no harm, nil,” according to Cunningham. According to Cunningham, the injunction issued on Friday maintains the situation as it has been since Roe v. Wade guaranteed women’s right to an abortion in 1973. As they have for the past 50 years, caregivers of children have the right to bodily autonomy, according to Cunningham.

On August 1, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer requested a temporary restraining order, and the judge accepted her request. This ruling barred county prosecutors from implementing the state’s 1931 legislation that outlaws the majority of abortions. Following another court decision prohibiting county prosecutors from prosecuting cases involving the abortion restriction, the Michigan Court of Appeals determined that they are permitted to do so.

Cunningham acknowledged in his ruling of August 1 that a temporary restraining order was required since other lawsuits are challenging the validity of the state’s 1931 law. Although the most recent interim injunction is only temporary, it still prevents county prosecutors in the state from bringing charges against individuals who provide abortion care and those who receive it.

As of Friday, August 19, Michigan law no longer makes abortion care illegal.

Whitmer expressed her gratitude for the judge’s decision, which she said will “protect women” and let nurses and doctors “continue providing care for their patients without fear of prosecution.” “The lack of legal certainty about abortion in Michigan has already led to far too much confusion for women who deserve assurance about their health care and dedicated medical professionals who should be free to carry out their duties without fear of being imprisoned.

Abortion used to be lawful in the morning, illegal at noon, and legal in the evening all in the same day. Whitmer wrote, in part, on Friday, “We cannot have this type of whiplash over something so fundamental as a woman’s right to regulate her own body. “Women in Michigan deserve better than to be treated like second-class citizens. It’s understandable that they are terrified and upset.” Defendants will probably file an appeal. A pre-trial was ordered on November 21 by Judge Cunningham.

Michigan’s restriction on abortion

A statute from 1931 still in effect in Michigan makes the majority of abortion procedures unlawful there. Actually, the statute is a modernization of one from the 1800s. The 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court, which guaranteed an individual’s right to an abortion without excessive government intrusion, replaced this abortion restriction. However, this decision was overturned in June, thus maintaining state discretion over how to regulate abortion and whether to outright outlaw it.

The judge in the Court of Claims prevents the execution of the ban

Planned Parenthood of Michigan and the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit to stop the state attorney general from enforcing Michigan’s abortion prohibition, saying the 1931 legislation is unconstitutional, in anticipation of the Supreme Court overturning Roe. On May 17, a judge in the Michigan Court of Claims decided in favour of PP and the ACLU, giving a preliminary injunction that prevented the abortion ban from being put into effect until a final order was made.

Court orders county prosecutors to bring charges

On August 1, the Michigan Court of Appeals concluded that although State Attorney General Dana Nessel is covered by Judge Gleicher’s preliminary injunction, the state’s county prosecutors are not. Therefore, the court ruled that Michigan’s 83 county prosecutors are authorised to implement the 1931 legislation that outlaws abortions.

The state Court of Appeals refused to take over Judge Gleicher’s case with the Court of Claims as requested by Jackson County Prosecutor Jerard Jarzynka and Kent County Prosecutor Chris Becker. However, the judge did decide in favour of the county prosecutors, pointing out that they are not directly supervised by the state attorney general and are not bound by the same rules.

County prosecutors are the target of a temporary restraining order.

On August 1st, a temporary restraining order was issued by an Oakland County Circuit Court Judge against a number of county prosecutors in Michigan. Gov. Whitmer made the request in response to the Court of Appeals ruling. The status quo was that “abortion was legal in Michigan under the framework provided” by Roe, according to Oakland County Judge Jacob Cunningham, who ruled that a temporary restraining order is “necessary to preserve the last actual, peaceable, uncontested status quo pending further order from the Court.”

A new lawsuit is being prepared.

Another lawsuit filed by Gov. Whitmer aims to completely invalidate the 1931 statute by claiming it to be unconstitutional. She has repeatedly urged the Michigan Supreme Court to resolve this dispute for the state rather than letting it proceed through the court system as it now does by asking the higher court to consider the case immediately. If the lawsuit will be heard, the state supreme court has not yet said.