Court Shuts Down Lawmakers Amid Abortion Fight in Michigan

Voters in November could get an opportunity to add abortion rights to the state constitution.

By Associated Press
August 25, 2022

DETROIT—Michigan lawmakers were turned down Wednesday in their request to appeal a May order that suspends a ban on abortion. A three-judge panel at the Court of Appeals said it found no need for an immediate review—and that means that abortion is still fully legal in all 83 counties across the state.

A dormant 1931 law makes it a crime to perform abortions in Michigan unless the life of the mother is in danger. But abortion still remains legal after the fall of Roe v. Wade because two judges in separate cases have issued orders that prevents both state and county prosecutors from enforcing the ban.

The appeals court was focusing on a challenge filed by the Republican-led House and Senate to an injunction issued by Judge Elizabeth Gleicher at the Court of Claims.

In May, Gleicher said the abortion ban likely violates the Michigan Constitution. Her order is limited to the attorney general’s office. An Oakland County judge last week made a similar order that applies to prosecutors in counties where abortion services are available.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, a Democrat who supports abortion rights, has repeatedly asked the Michigan Supreme Court to step in and settle all disputes about the 1931 law, but no action has been taken. The latest decision in the Court of Claims clears the way for Republicans to appeal the decision there too.

Separately, voters in November could get an opportunity to add abortion rights to the state Constitution.

RELATED: A Look at the Petition to Guarantee Abortion Rights for Michiganders

RELATED: Reproductive Rights Myths: Debunking What’s on the Ballot

RELATED: ‘It Doesn’t Matter What County You Live in Now’: Abortion is Legal Across Michigan

‘Gander Editor Kyle Kaminski contributed to this report.


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