Alliance Defending Freedom: It’s days away: The Supreme Court’s marriage decision is expected to come down on June 29.
Alliance Defending Freedom: Cities across the U.S. are contemplating new laws that would put “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” in the same category as race or religion.
National Right to Life: In Fargo, many more students will now have the opportunity to learn about the value and dignity of the preborn because two teenagers fought for their right to stand for life.
Alliance Defending Freedom: The people of Idaho, Wyoming, and North Dakota have spoken. And they have made it clear this legislative season that they do not need a sexual orientation, gender identity (SOGI) nondiscrimination ordinance in their states.
World Magazine (Subscription Required): A school district in North Dakota has denied two high school students’ requests to start pro-life clubs, despite previously approving clubs for Fellowship of Christian Athletes and gay-straight alliances.
Thomas More Society: Thomas More Society has won dismissal of all charges against pro-life advocate Robert Rudnick, who had been arrested on account of his pro-life speech in Williston, ND. Judge Paul W. Jacobson of North Dakota District Court has granted Thomas More Society’s motion to dismiss, which was drafted with the assistance of First Amendment scholar Professor Eugene Volokh.
The Bismark Tribune: Ken Connelly, an attorney for Alliance Defending Freedom, said SB2279 would create a special class and hurt businesses. He cited several examples of small businesses around the country facing litigation over declining to serve gay and lesbian couples based upon their religious beliefs.
Ken Connelly, an attorney for Alliance Defending Freedom, said SB2279 would create a special class and hurt businesses. He cited several examples of small businesses around the country facing litigation over declining to serve gay and lesbian couples based upon their religious beliefs.
Life News: Every year on the anniversary of Roe, hundreds of thousands of pro-lifers attend the annual March for Life in Washington D.C. to remember the more than 55 million lives lost from abortion. This year the march falls on Thursday, and North Dakota students will be leading the crowd through the National Mall.
Kelly Clarkson’s new song featuring her baby’s prenatal heartbeat debuts as heartbeat cases are heard in court
The Daily Signal: On the same day as “Heartbeat Song” released, two national pro-life groups released a collaborative video calling attention to the “Heartbeat” court cases being heard in federal appeals court the following day.
Associated Press: A closely watched legal fight over two of the nation’s most stringent abortion bans resumed Tuesday, with attorneys for North Dakota and Arkansas asking a federal appeals court to reinstate two laws overturned by two separate lower federal courts.
The Christian Post: North Dakota’s highest court upheld a state law that restricts the usage of medication abortions, reversing a lower court ruling.
North Dakota Supreme Court upholds abortion restrictions – a welcome win, despite ‘splintered’ opinions
Thomas More Society: Just two days ago, nearly on the eve of next Tuesday’s Election Day when North Dakota voters are due to vote on a proposed “human life” amendment to their state constitution (called “Measure 1”), North Dakota’s Supreme Court finally handed down its decision, rejecting a long-pending constitutional challenge, based on the state constitution rather than on federal abortion law, targeting a 2011 state law regulating so-called “chemical” abortions.
ABC News (AP): The North Dakota Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld a state law that limits the use of drugs to perform abortions, a move abortion-rights supporters say will end the use of medications to perform the procedure.
CBN News: Changes could be on the way for abortion laws in North Dakota. A new measure would declare in the state constitution that life begins at conception.
The Bizmark Tribune (Forum News Service): The North Dakota Supreme Court on Tuesday reversed a district judge’s ruling that had blocked a 2011 state law limiting drug-induced abortions from taking effect, saying there wasn’t a sufficient majority of justices in agreement to declare the law unconstitutional.
Life News: Additionally, the Alliance Defending Freedom has reported that publically available federal and individual state audits of Planned Parenthood Affiliates has uncovered Planned Parenthood affiliates with at least $12.5 million in waste, abuse, and “fraudulent overbilling” of taxpayers.
The Christian Post: Measure 6 would establish approximately 50/50 shared parenting as the default when parents with children split up, unless a court finds that one parent is unfit. Although 110 world experts have endorsed shared parenting, the deceptively named “Keeping Kids First” – which should be more accurately named “Keeping Kids With One Parent” – appears to be the only group opposing Measure 6.
Aleteia: North Dakota is known for sub-zero temperatures and the Bakken oil field, which is helping America to achieve energy independence. But it is also one of the most pro-life states in the nation, a state where nearly all Republicans – and even most Democrats – are in favor of protecting life because they believe that abortion is morally wrong.
Baptist Press: The war to protect unborn life in America has shifted in significant measure to the state level, with Tennessee and North Dakota emerging as key battlegrounds this fall.
AP: Seven couples have filed a federal lawsuit challenging the ban on same-sex marriage in North Dakota, the last remaining state without a court challenge.
SCOTUSblog: “A federal judge in Bismarck, North Dakota, on Wednesday struck down the strictest anti-abortion law in the nation, a ban on ending pregnancy after a fetal heartbeat is detected — that is, at about six weeks. Separately, U.S. District Judge Daniel L. Hovland rejected a legal maneuver by lawyers for the state seeking to prohibit all abortions in North Dakota, at any point in pregnancy.”
Associated Press: “A Dakotas-based health care system has granted hospital-admitting privileges to doctors at North Dakota’s sole abortion provider, which would bring the Fargo clinic into compliance with a new state law.”
WDAY: “North Dakota’s only abortion clinic is in talks to settle a lawsuit it filed over an anti-abortion law passed last year. Negotiations are underway between the Red River Women’s Clinic and the state of North Dakota.”
Bloomberg: “Abortion-rights advocates and North Dakota settled a lawsuit over a requirement that abortion doctors have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of their clinic, according to state court records.”
Brookings Register: “Some Brookings County residents have been contacting their commissioners about a new policy that extends marriage-based benefits to county employees and their same-sex spouses if they have been legally married in a jurisdiction that permits same-sex marriage”
AP: “Opponents who have chipped away at abortion with state-level restrictions are facing a dilemma in some of the places where they have been most successful: Do they continue with that approach or seek more dramatic policies that risk court rulings that could undo previous gains?”
LifeNews: Every so often the government gets it right on abortion. While the federal government and most states are fully prepared to push unlimited abortion on demand paid for at taxpayer expenses without any limits whatsoever, some governments still understand that human rights begin when human life begins — at conception, before birth. Such is the case with the state government of North Dakota.
AP: . . . a drop the facility’s director attributes in part to new legislation she says has confused some women into thinking abortion in the state is now outlawed.
WDAZ.com: If that same-sex marriage in Minnesota or Iowa doesn’t work out, you can always marry the opposite sex in North Dakota. You don’t even have to get a divorce first. At least that’s North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem’s interpretation of state law, according to a legal opinion filed Thursday. | ND AG, Letter Op. 2013-L-06 (Dec. 12, 2013)
How Appealing links to coverage and more information on the case.
Thomas More Society Argues In The North Dakota Supreme Court For The Catholic Conference: No State Constitutional Right To Abortion
Yesterday, on behalf of the North Dakota Catholic Conference, the Thomas More Society filed a friend-of-the-court brief before the North Dakota Supreme Court defending the State’s law regulating medical abortions. The case, MKB Management Corp. v. Burdick, is especially important because the critical issue in the appeal is whether the North Dakota Constitution recognizes a right to abortion.
ABC (AP): A federal judge has dismissed part of a lawsuit challenging a new North Dakota law that blocks abortions based on unwanted gender or a genetic defect, such as Down syndrome.
Seattle CBS: A judge ruled Wednesday to block a North Dakota law that requires doctors who perform abortions to have hospital admitting privileges, after opponents of the bill argued it would shut down the clinic.
Judge temporarily blocks North Dakota’s six-week abortion ban, calling it ‘clearly unconstitutional’
Washington Post: A federal judge in North Dakota on Monday blocked the state’s law banning abortions as early as six weeks after fertilization, ruling the measure cannot take effect until the legal challenge it faces is resolved.
AP: A 2011 North Dakota law that outlaws one of two drugs used in nonsurgical abortions violates the state and U.S. constitutions, a state judge ruled Monday.
Center for Reproductive Rights sues in North Dakota to block law prohibiting sex selection abortions
The Center for Reproductive Rights filed a lawsuit in federal court today against two unconstitutional North Dakota laws, one banning abortion as early as six weeks of pregnancy—before some women even know they are pregnant—and another outlawing abortions for reasons of sex selection or genetic fetal anomaly. Today’s lawsuit, MKB Management, Inc. v. Burdick, filed in the U.S. District Court in Bismarck . . .
AP: Efforts to give North Dakota voters a chance to repeal three of the state’s strict new anti-abortion laws are falling short of signature goals, organizers say, in part because of a lack of support from women’s groups, which say they prefer to fight the restrictions in court.
USA Today (AP): North Dakota judge on Wednesday agreed to combine a lawsuit that challenges a new requirement for doctors who perform abortions with litigation over a 2011 law that limits the use of drugs to terminate pregnancies.
One News Now: Alliance Defending Freedom attorney Jonathan Scruggs explains that as part of an assignment, their client created a pro-life poster that the principal ordered to be taken down after just one parent complained. But as the attorney notes, restricting speech based on one complaint is known in legal circles as a “heckler’s veto.”
Bloomberg: U.S. District Judge Susan Webber Wright in Little Rock in a ruling yesterday denied a request by the state’s attorney general to dismiss the lawsuit. The judge said the two doctors have standing to sue even though the law hasn’t gone into effect and they have sufficiently alleged the law infringes women’s constitutional rights.
Center for Reproductive Rights Challenges North Dakota Law Aimed at Closing State’s Only Abortion Clinic
Center for Reproductive Rights: The Center for Reproductive Rights will soon file a lawsuit challenging both HB 1456 and HB 1305 on behalf the Red River Women’s Clinic before they are scheduled to take effect on August 1, 2013. The Center filed today’s proposed supplemental complaint, MKB Management Corp d/b/a Red River Women’s Clinic, Tammi Kromenaker, Kathryn Eggleston, M.D., v. Birch Burdick and Terry Dwelle, M.D., along with law firm Turman & Lang Ltd.
LifeNews: “Public schools should encourage, not shut down, the free exchange of ideas,” said Legal Counsel Jon Scruggs. “We commend Griggs County Central High School for believing in this principle and promptly allowing the pro-life poster to be redisplayed.”
One day after receiving a letter from Alliance Defending Freedom, a North Dakota high school and its district agreed to allow a student’s pro-life poster that was part of a class assignment to be placed back on the walls of the school.
Grand Forks Herald: A judge said Thursday he will permanently block a 2011 North Dakota law that would have limited drug-induced abortions, a decision the director of the state’s lone abortion clinic hopes will “pave the way” for future challenges in a state where lawmakers have adopted four anti-abortion laws this session alone.
Washington Times: In April 2013, North Dakota enacted the “fetal heartbeat” ban to criminalize all abortion services after just 6 weeks of pregnancy. “Notwithstanding any other provision of law, an individual may not knowingly perform an abortion on a pregnant woman with the specific intent of causing or abetting the termination of the life of the unborn child the pregnant woman is carrying and whose heartbeat has been detected.”
AP: Republican Gov. Jack Dalrymple signed into law a measure that outlaws abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy based on the disputed premise that at that point a fetus can feel pain.
AP: North Dakota’s House approved a measure Friday that would outlaw abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy based on the disputed premise that at that point a fetus can feel pain.
Reuters: North Dakota’s only clinic that offers abortion services is vowing to challenge the state’s adoption of new restrictions that its backers say imperil its ability to operate.
AP: Rival legal teams, well-financed and highly motivated, are girding for court battles over the coming months on laws enacted in Arkansas and North Dakota that would impose the nation’s toughest bans on abortion.
LifeNews: The governor of North Dakota is facing death threats following his signing of a bill that would ban abortions after 6 weeks of pregnancy and another to stop abortions on disabled babies.
NPR audio: In North Dakota, voters will decide next year whether to approve a constitutional amendment saying life begins at conception. A number of other bills in that state await the governor’s signature including one that prohibits abortion if a fetal heartbeat is present at about six weeks. In Arkansas, a ban at 12 weeks passed earlier this month. Abortion opponents hope to get one of those laws before the U.S. Supreme Court.
LifeNews: North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple signed three pro-life bills this morning, including one that would ban most abortions in the state. Dalrymple acknowledged a court battle is expected and asked state legislators to set aside funds to pay for the expenses.
AP: More than 300 abortion-rights activists carried signs and chanted, “Veto! Veto! Veto!” in a demonstration Monday at the state Capitol protesting a package of measures that would give the state the toughest abortion restrictions in the nation.
LifeSiteNews: For the first time in United States history, a legislative body has approved a personhood amendment in both the House and the Senate. Now the amendment will be referred to the people of North Dakota for a vote.
Steve Aden at Townhall: On March 15, the North Dakota senate approved a bill that prevents abortions from being performed once a developing child’s heartbeat is detected in the mother’s womb.
Bismark Tribune: House Bill 1305 would make it a Class A misdemeanor for a physician to willingly perform an abortion based specifically on gender or on genetic abnormalities. House Bill 1456 requires a physician to determine whether there’s a detectable heartbeat prior to performing an abortion
LifeNews: The North Dakota state Senate today approved legislation that would have the state banning most all abortions. The measure stops any abortions after the first 6 weeks of pregnancy.
AP: One bill would ban most abortions if a fetal heartbeat is detected. That can happen as early as six weeks into pregnancy. A second bill would prevent women from having abortions based on gender selection or a genetic defect, such as Down syndrome.
WDAY.com: Abortion-rights attorneys will be watching closely actions taken by the North Dakota Legislature this week on a package of measures aimed at strengthening the state’s already strict abortion laws.
LifeNews: The North Dakota state Senate on Monday approved two pro-life bills – including one that would ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy. Senators voted 30-17 to ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy based on scientific information showing unborn children feel pain at least at that point in pregnancy.
Williston Herald: Freier referred to lawyer Kellie Fiedorek with the Alliance Defending Freedom to explain some legal matters, including how the bill would put the LGBT community against businesses operating in line with their religious beliefs. Fiedorek cited examples in Colorado and other states of businesses that faced discrimination suits for refusing to provide a service, such as wedding photography or making a wedding cake, for a gay couple. In one example, she said the business referred the couple to a different business that provided the service. “This isn’t discrimination,” Fiedorek said. “This is religious intolerance.”
Personhood North Dakota: Confirming that the protection of every human being is within reach, The Defense of Human Life Act, HB 1450, has passed in the North Dakota House with an overwhelming majority of 68 – 25.
San Francisco Chronicle: The North Dakota Senate has passed legislation that would require a doctor performing abortions to be an OB-GYN with hospital-admitting privileges.
InForum: Kellie Fiedorek, attorney for the Alliance Defending Freedom, said expanding the state’s laws would create multiple legal issues and undermine First Amendment rights. “Religious freedom is not confined to only the four walls of a church,” she said. She highlighted a case in Colorado where a baker declined to bake a cake for a same-sex couple because of his religious beliefs. The couple filed a complaint, which Fiedorek called “religious intolerance.” She also said a counselor in Georgia was fired after she respectfully referred a gay woman to another counselor. Fiedorek said the woman was overly pleased with the counseling service, but still filed a complaint.
Bismark Tribune: Tom Freier, executive director of the North Dakota Family Alliance, said state law already has adequate provisions for the GLBT community. “It does create a protected class,” Freier said. “We believe equal protections certainly do exist.” Lawyer Kellie Fiedorek, with Alliance Defending Freedom, said SB2252 pits the GLBT community and its lobby on the federal level against those operating their businesses in a way that mirrors their religious beliefs. “This isn’t discrimination. This is religious intolerance,” Fiedorek said. Fiedorek cited the example of a Colorado bakery last year that was subject to a discrimination suit after refusing to make a wedding cake for a gay couple. She said legislation such as SB2252 could work to force people of faith out of the marketplace. “They should not have to choose between their conscience and their livelihood,” Fiedorek said. | Also Grand Forks Herald | Jamestown Sun
MPRNews: A North Dakota House committee is considering a bill that would ban abortions in the state if a fetal heartbeat is detected.
WDAZ.com: Legislation was announced today that would protect people from being discriminated against because of their sexual preference when it comes to housing and employment. Currently the law does not include this in North Dakota so it is legal to discriminate someone on that basis.
The Republic: North Dakota’s House Republican majority leader says the Legislature may revisit whether the state should take part in running a new health insurance marketplace that is a key part of the new federal health care law.
CNN (includes video): The Forum of Fargo-Moorehead will accept for publication announcements of same-sex marriages, engagements and anniversaries if the marriage takes place in a state or country where it’s legally recognized, editor Matt Von Pinnon announced over the weekend.