Congratulations, it's a lawsuit

The inevitable Planned Parenthood lawsuit has been filed against the new 3 day waiting period and pre-abortion counseling law that passed the legislature this past session.  No surprises here.

However, I am curious behind the strategy to go with the lawsuit approach rather than collecting the signatures for a referred law — which could automatically stay the implementation of the law.  Could it be that Planned Parenthood doesn’t believe they could win at the ballot box with a referred law?  That doesn’t seem likely as it worked out for them in 2006.  Was getting nearly 16,000 signatures too onerous?  Again — doesn’t seem to make sense as Planned Parenthood won again at the ballot box on an initiated measure in 2008.  Surely they still have the lists of their volunteers and supporters.

Could it be that Planned Parenthood was concerned that SD voters might understand that if they have to have counseling and wait before routine surgical procedures, it’s not asking too much to ask the same for abortions.   If so, maybe Planned Parenthood weighed the risk and decided they’d rather roll the dice in court where they might be awarded fees from the court instead of having to pay the cost of explaining why abortions — which according to them is just another surgical procedure  — should be treated differently than something routine.

So could it be cost?  Could it be that lawyers are actually a more cost-effective method?  Curiouser and Curiouser….

30 Replies to “Congratulations, it's a lawsuit”

  1. kurtz

    Looks like you answered your own question. Health care, climate change, watershed protection: may the best lawyers win! It’s the only way to beat red state collapse.

  2. Spencer

    Simply put, Planned Parenthood knew that it would likely lose big in a public vote on this. All the misinformation in the world wasn’t going to win it for them this time around.

  3. caheidelberger

    Could it be, could it be… pure manufactured speculation. The only empirical data vailable shows that the majority of the electorate will reject extreme, draconain abortion restrictions in South Dakota. It’s much more likely that Planned Parenthood looks at this bill and sees a courtroom slam-dunk that will be more cost-effective than running around rainy South Dakota collecting 16,000 valid signatures and a whole bunch more for padding. PP probably sees the same slam dunk coming that the anti-abortion clinics do: that’s part of the reason they haven’t leapt into the rigamarole of signing up to provide the coercive, absolutely unconservative, government-between-you-and-your-doctor counseling HB 1217 mandates.

    When all you have are wishful rhetorical questions, you know you’re losing.

    1. PNR

      But this isn’t extreme, so it shouldn’t be a problem. Except to the pro-baby killing crowd, any restriction is extreme.

  4. Mandy

    Maybe unlike the hypocritical members of our legislature, Planned Parenthood et al actually respect the Constitution and the voters of SD…

      1. Mandy

        This is not the priority of the majority of South Dakotans and people are beyond exhausted by the abortion debate and its constant eclipse of other, actually imperative issues.

      2. kwn

        We have voted this issue down – twice.

        Let’s move on and spend money on more important things in our state, like education!

    1. Spencer

      Wow, we really are feeding delusions today, aren’t we? Planned Parenthood and the ACLU threaten a lawsuit every time South Dakota does something that they perceive to be an assault on their leftwing agenda. In fact, these organizations rarely step beyond the argument that they are going to sue you if you do not cooperate. The very idea of filing a lawsuit against an act of the people has become the whole of their argument including their efforts in propping up the pro-abortion agenda. What would these organizations do if they didn’t have the threat of an expensive lawsuit to hang over voters’ and legislators’ heads? Then they would actually have to argue against this law on the merits of preserving the existing abortion industry and risk losing that argument over and over again in South Dakota.

      1. Mandy

        The only person who seems to be deluded is you, my friend. You know the ACLU has also defended Quran-burning ‘Christians,’ right? How’s that for pushing that “leftwing agenda” forward? PP and the ACLU-SD are not the instigators here. It’s not their fault the legislature has a disregard for the Constitution and federal law.

  5. true south dakotan

    I wonder if Rep. Roger Hunt has rallied the troops and gathered the green to help the state defray the costs of this BS. I think the voters have been very clear on the past two initiated measures and the only people in the state that seem to want keep returning to this issue are in the State legislature.

    1. kwn

      You’re right. Hunt is an idiot and not in touch with his district. We need to spend money on what’s important and keep Hunt away from my private parts.

    1. anon

      A lot of science has changed since 1973. You might say it’s evolved. I doubt the issue would have passed the supreme court if they had modern science to better understand the life process of the unborn.

      1. anon

        Abortion is the one issue that the left has lost ground on for the past 40 years.

        I suppose 45% of the country is 100% pro-life, 20% are pro-abortion zelots who want abortion for fun and 35% who generally are pro-life or pro-choice but don’t advocate for one side or the other and are very uncomfortable with the issue.

        There is a big difference between someone advocating abortion and being pro-choice and someone who is pro-choice but doesn’t advocate for it they don’t like abortion but don’t want to step in and voice an opinion.

  6. Stace Nelson

    What is missing from the comments is the actual text of the law

    Click on the little eagle icons to hear the testimony in committee

    There is no specific Constitutional right to kill an unborn child, nor is there a federal law that requires an unborn child be killed. So not sure where myself and others, who voted for these reasonable protections in HB 1217, conspired to subvert either.

    In regards to the legality of abortion. For decades, there were numerous laws on the books that advocated that Americans could own slaves. SCOTUS upheld those laws as legal on numerous occasions. It did not make the practice moral, right, or them right.

    This law helps protect the rights of women to be free from being forced to have an abortion. It also gives them the opportunity to get information on the process, the physical & mental side effects of the procedures, that will give them the opportunity to make an educated decision on what is best for them. That is something we should all support.

    Women who do get such information, who are protected from coercion, chose NOT to have an abortion in higher numbers.

    In that womens’ rights are better protected with this law and the side effect is that more women chose to have their babies, I am good with that.

  7. Kelsey

    When you throw millions of dollars away on a campaign, even if you win, you’re still out that money. When Planned Parenthood or the ACLU wins a lawsuit against the state (which they have many, many time), South Dakota has to pony up those costs. That’s why its the preferred response to unconstitutional laws. The first time an abortion ban went on the ballot, the petition drive was started by some nutty guy from Wisconsin, then picked up by a political consulting firm (you know, the only people who actually make money during a campaign). The second time, it was anti-choice groups. I don’t know why anyone is surprised that organizations that actually care about where their time and resources go would prefer to avoid another pointless ballot initiative.

  8. Duh

    Go read Stacey’s post and the law again. This law does nothing but give the woman seeking the abortion the knowledge to make a decision. Period. Ok, Mandy. Lets say you’re at the hands of an abusive boyfriend who brow beats you into having an abortion or parents who don’t want the stigma of a bastard child or just a simple visit to PP where their only goal is to fire up the sucking machine in attempts to gain more of the all mighty dollar. Woudn’t you want the right to see your alternatives and have a chance to get out of their grasp before you make a decision?? It is incredibly ironic to see feminazis bitch about a law that is designed to protect them. If all is said and done, and you still want to go nuke the baby, then have at it. However, if it opens up an otherwise unduly influenced woman about other alternatives like adoption, then it’s a win-win.

    1. Spencer

      Stace’s post really highlights the extent to which those who oppose this law are unwilling to use facts, figures, or any rationale to argue their position. It always seems to come down to appealing to emotion or using scare tactics by throwing around lawsuits. And, it is endlessly comical when someone from Dakotawomen chimes in on an issue with one of their estrogen-charged Molotov cocktails pretending to be “for the people” in South Dakota. You would be hard-pressed in finding a group more out of the mainstream in South Dakota than that clown show (Angie included).

  9. MC Post author

    Did any one really expect a lawsuit not to be filed? A special fund was set up so people can contribute to defend this law. I have to believe that just about everyone knew this was coming.

    Abortion is a medical procedure. There is this little thing call informed consent. This is where the patient is informed what will be done, the risks involved, and any alternatives. This law demands that. One would think, that a law that takes some of the burden off the abortion clinic from a task they prefer not do, they would be in favor of. From the venom of the opposition, I guess they don’t want the patient not to be fully informed, just give their consent.

    I also found that when some one opposes a ruling so vigorously, we should follow the money. Abortion clinics make their money by doing one thing, preforming abortions. This law threatens that income, so yes, they are going to oppose it. Just like if there is a law banning ethanol, farmer who grow corn are going to oppose it. I don’t fault them for opposing it, they are doing what they feel they need to do to protect their business. It wouldn’t be so bad if abortion clinics offered other services, like pre-natal care, birthing services, adoption, fertility help, etc. However these services don’t turn a fast dollar, not like abortion does.

    The 1973 Supreme Court Ruling Roe v Wade is bad law. Science has shown us so much more. We now understand more than we did, shouldn’t our laws reflect that, or should we go back to the days that women couldn’t vote.

    This law doesn’t outlaw abortions, it just says that women must get all the information they need before jumping into something they will regret for the rest of their lives

  10. Elais


    Why are you so sure women regret their choices the rest of their lives? Are you a mind-reader and can see inside the minds of women who have had abortions? Do you even know of any women who have had abortions?


    I’ve seen some pro-lifers use emotion and and scare tactics to harass women and others. I’ve also seen them murder doctors for performing abortions and claim that it is justified.

    I have yet to see any factual basis for what they say and print. Almost everything you said in your post applies to yourself and others like you.

    1. Les

      What difference would it make to you if everyone knew of a post traumatic situation from abortion Ela?

      I do agree that scare tactics bypass fact, on your side as well.

      You seem to value a Dr’s life over the unborn, that is curious to me as I value them equally.

  11. Les

    Ela, I have broken one of my cardinal rules by commenting on your statement. You choose to twist at every opportunity and only respond where you can twist. For that you get my twistit award and also my assurance I will distance myself from your arena where only those foolish enough to engage in fools play appear.


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