HUNTSVILLE, Ala – The passage of Alabama’s abortion ban sparked controversy nationwide. The American Civil Liberties Union, Planned Parenthood and the director of the Alabama Women’s Center in Huntsville, jointly filed a lawsuit stating the ban violates the constitution.
The law is scheduled to take effect November 2019, but the plaintiffs filed a motion to keep that from happening.
It’s not every day you hear a bill sponsor say they’re fine with people filing a motion to stop their legislation from being enacted, but that’s what Representative Terri Collins told WHNT News 19 Wednesday.
She says the whole point of the bill was to get it to the US Supreme Court in an attempt to overturn Roe v. Wade and the lawsuit is part of that.
Protests erupted across the state as Alabama’s abortion ban was approved.
Several plaintiffs filed a lawsuit against the state in response. A motion was filed last week asking the courts to block the enactment of HB 314. The motion states that the ban would inflict irreparable constitutional, medical, emotional, psychological, and other harms on plaintiffs` patients. It also points out that the ban is in conflict with the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision with Roe v. Wade.
Representative Collins says this lawsuit and even the motion are all part of her plan.
“We expected them to file the motion. They probably did it quicker than we thought they would, but that is fine, that’s a part of that expectation, and that’s what actually moves it along in that court process,” said Collins, (R) Decatur.
The ban makes performing an abortion a felony. It is the strictest ban in the country, only containing an exemption for a mother`s health, but not for rape or incest. It also defines an unborn child as a human being in utero at any stage of development regardless of viability.
“That’s the language Roe v. Wade used, in utero, which meant already a person, already pregnant, and then they said that child was not a person. So, we used their language in our bill and so we feel like our bill is a little bit better vehicle to get them to actually review their decision,” she said.
She says her bill gets to the heart of the issue and because of that could be more effective at overturning Roe v. Wade than bans passed in other states.
Attorney General Steve Marshall was named as a defendant in the lawsuit. He released an 11-page response to the complaint this week.
In it, he says in part, “Defendant wishes to enforce the challenged law and intends to argue in this case that H.B. 314 is constitutional under a proper interpretation of the united states constitution.”