Michigan GOP leaders ask court to let abortion ban take effect

Abortion remains legal in Michigan because a Court of Claims judge’s injunction blocks enforcement of a 1931 state law.

Abortion rights supporters hold signs at a demonstration

Abortion-rights protesters take part at a rally following the United States Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, federally protected right to abortion, outside the state capitol in Lansing, Mich., Friday, June 24, 2022. The Supreme Court has ended constitutional protections for abortion that had been in place nearly 50 years, a decision by its conservative majority to overturn the court's landmark abortion cases.

The Michigan Legislature’s Republican leaders have asked the Michigan Court of Appeals to allow the state’s ban on most abortions to go into effect.

Abortion remains legal in Michigan because a Court of Claims judge’s injunction blocks enforcement of a 1931 state law. Otherwise, abortion would be outlawed except to save the life of a pregnant woman now that the U.S. Supreme Court has reversed Roe v. Wade.

Court of Claims Judge Elizabeth Gleicher issued the temporary injunction in response to a lawsuit filed by Planned Parenthood of Michigan. Among other things, Gleicher said Planned Parenthood has a high likelihood of winning.

The House and Senate GOP leadership asked to join the case after Democratic Attorney General Dana Nessel refused to defend the law. She did not oppose letting the Legislature join the case.

In the filing with the Court of Appeals, the House and Senate Republican leaders called stalling reinstatement of the law “an egregious abuse of judicial power.”

The next briefs in the Planned Parenthood case are due in about three weeks. Absent some other action, the injunction will remain in effect in the meantime.

In another case, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has asked the Michigan Supreme Court to declare that abortion rights are guaranteed by the state constitution’s due process and equal protection clauses. The court has not said whether it will hear the case.


Photo credit: Paul Sancya/Associated Press

Trusted, accurate, up-to-date.

WDET strives to make our journalism accessible to everyone. As a public media institution, we maintain our journalistic integrity through independent support from readers like you. If you value WDET as your source of news, music and conversation, please make a gift today.

Donate today »