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Breitbart: Also galling to Montgomery County officials is the fact that by following NARAL’s advice, they had to pay Centro Tepeyac $375,000 in legal fees. Matt Bowman of Alliance Defending Freedom said, “NARAL’s response to that is to give more bad advice. Even one of NARAL’s best friends on the county council says that his colleagues probably would not adopt NARAL’s proposed ‘truth-in-advertising’ law after NARAL had caused this court debacle.”
Gvmt official confirms authenticity of e-mails showing collaboration with NARAL to shut down pregnancy centers
Life Site News: After LifeSiteNews published e-mails Tuesday showing Montgomery County officials collaborating with NARAL’s Maryland chapter in an effort to shut down pro-life pregnancy centers, the county council’s current president has admitted they are authentic.
American Thinker: A Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request reveals it: officials in Montgomery County (Mo Co), Maryland collaborated with activists from rabidly pro-abortion NARAL to shut down a pro-life pregnancy resource center in the county.
Christian News Wire: Responding to a report from LifeSiteNews.com uncovering an ongoing plan between the Maryland chapter of NARAL Pro-Choice America and the public officials in Montgomery County, Md., to impede or eliminate pregnancy help organizations, Heartbeat International President Peggy Hartshorn, Ph.D., pointed to the success of pregnancy centers in her companion article at LifeSiteNews.com.
Life Site News: Represented by the Alliance Defending Freedom, Centro fought the ordinance, which did not apply to abortion clinics. On April 30, 2014, Montgomery County dropped its defense of the law after a third decision against it on March 7, in which U.S. District Judge Deborah Chasanow, a Clinton appointee, noted that the people who accused the centers of spreading “misinformation” were “universally volunteers from a pro-choice organization sent to investigate practices” at the centers.
Live Action News: “Courts around the country have been striking these types of laws down, and these decisions join the growing list,” says ADF Senior Legal Counsel Matt Bowman. “Pro-life pregnancy centers, which offer real help and real hope to women, shouldn’t be punished by political allies of the abortion industry.
Gazette.net: Matt Bowman, senior legal counsel with the Alliance Defending Freedom and co-counsel in the case, said the recent settlement covers what it cost for attorneys to defend “against the unconstitutional law and to restore freedom.” The settlement also include $1 in damages paid to Centro Tepeyac.
The Baltimore Sun: This prompted Alliance Defending Freedom to come to the defense of pro-life groups Care Net, Heartbeat International, the National Institute of Family and Life Advocates and the Vitae Foundation. All four groups contend that that city is wrong to subpoena organizations that are not parties to their lawsuit, have no offices in the city, and are located across the country.
Life News: A Maryland county paid $375,000 in attorneys’ fees, costs, and nominal damages this week after a court battle won by a pro-life center represented by Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys and allied attorneys.
Life Site News: After four years and three court decisions, a D.C.-area crisis pregnancy center has finally received justice. Montgomery County, Maryland, has paid $375,000 in attorney’s fees, court costs, and damages to Centro Tepeyac Silver Spring Women’s Center and its legal counsel with the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF).
The Telegraph: Montgomery County has paid just under $375,000 in attorneys’ fees and court costs to a group that brought a lawsuit challenging a county ordinance that affected anti-abortion pregnancy counseling centers.
Alliance Defending Freedom: A Maryland county paid $375,000 in attorneys’ fees, costs, and nominal damages this week after a court battle won by a pro-life center represented by Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys and allied attorneys. In March, a federal court issued a ruling striking down the entirety of a Montgomery County law that forced pro-life pregnancy counselors to advise women against using their services.
One News Now: A Maryland county has decided it won’t pursue legal efforts to stifle free speech for pro-life pregnancy centers.
WND: Officials in Montgomery County, Maryland, have decided not to appeal an adverse court ruling that swamped their plans to silence pregnancy centers.
ADF Media: A Maryland county has decided not to appeal a March federal court ruling that struck down the entirety of a law that forced pro-life pregnancy care centers to advise women against using their services.
Life Site News: A Maryland county has dropped its lawsuit against a crisis pregnancy center near the nation’s capital, which would have forced the institution to meet signage standards abortion facilities were exempted from.
Mario Diaz at American Thinker: “Bad news for pro-abortion advocates: the United States District Court for the District of Maryland just issued a ruling on an important First Amendment pro-life case (Centro Tepeyac v. Montgomery County), exposing, yet again, the radicalism and lack of care for women of the pro-’choice’ movement. . . . Centro Tepeyac, a CPC, represented by the Alliance Defending Freedom, challenged the law as a violation of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.”
LifeSiteNews: “ADF Senior Counsel Casey Mattox told LifeSiteNews, ‘This law, and others like it, are NARAL-driven attacks on non-profit pregnancy centers because they cut into abortion’s bottom line. NARAL, PP, and their allies recognize this growing threat of pro-life pregnancy centers that provide health and hope to women for free, without taking taxpayer money.’”
Federal Judge issues permanent injunction against ordinance targeting free speech rights of pro-life pregnancy resource center | National Right to Life
National Right to Life: “Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Legal Counsel Matt Bowman was co-counsel in Centro Tepeyac v. Montgomery County. ‘Pregnancy centers, which offer real help and hope to women, shouldn’t be punished by political allies of abortion sellers,’ he said.”
Religion Clause: “In Centro Tepeyac v. Montgomery County, (D MD, March 7, 2014), a Maryland federal district court enjoined the enforcement of a Montgomery County Maryland Resolution that requires each ‘limited service pregnancy center’ to post to post a sign in its waiting room . . . Alliance Defending Freedom issued a press release announcing the decision.”
WorldNetDaily: “‘Pregnancy centers, which offer real help and hope to women, shouldn’t be punished by political allies of abortion sellers,’ said Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Legal Counsel Matt Bowman, co-counsel in the case.”
A federal court issued a ruling Friday that strikes down the entirety of a Maryland county’s law that forced pro-life pregnancy counselors to advise women against using their services. The court’s permanent injunction prohibits the Montgomery County law from being enforced effective immediately.
Townhall: Matt Bowman, senior legal counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom, said of the appeals court’s decision in the Montgomery County case, “Pregnancy centers, which offer real help and hope to women, shouldn’t be punished by political allies of abortion sellers. The court of appeals affirmed that a hostile government cannot force pro-life centers to speak a message contrary to their interests without the highest form of justification for doing so.”
One News Now: And the local government’s orders to abortion facilities? “They don’t apply the government disclaimers to pro-abortion centers,” says attorney Matt Bowman of Alliance Defending Freedom. Bowman is serving as co-counsel representing the Centro Tepeyac Women’s Center in the lawsuit. Bowman, Matt (ADF)“They only make pro-life centers say things,” the attorney continues, “because mandated speech is designed to scare women away so that they will not actually be able to choose the life-affirming help that pro-life centers offer.”
4th Circuit rules on whether gov’t can force speech of pro-life centers | Alliance Defending Freedom
Report from en banc Fourth Circuit oral argument in pregnancy center compelled speech cases | WalshLaw
WalshLaw: This morning’s lively en banc proceedings at the Fourth Circuit in abortion-counseling-related First Amendment challenges did not produce clear signs of a winner, but raised questions (at least in my mind) about what legal issues the court took the cases en banc to address. There was virtually no discussion of commercial speech doctrine, and no judge or set of judges developed a line of questioning that would seemingly lay the foundation to displace strict scrutiny as the appropriate standard of review. That said, oral argument reveals only so much. | Related ADF Media Information Page and Press Releases
LifeNews: “Pregnancy centers, which offer real help and hope to women, shouldn’t be punished by political allies of abortion sellers,” said Senior Legal Counsel Matt Bowman, co-counsel for the Centro Tepeyac Women’s Center. Bowman added: “Pro-life centers provide women with the emotional support and practical resources they need, giving them more choices. They should be free to share that message instead of being compelled to provide the government’s preferred message, which sends women elsewhere. The 4th Circuit panel was right to rule against Montgomery County’s law, and we trust the full court will agree.”
An Alliance Defending Freedom attorney will be available for media interviews following oral arguments by co-counsel Thursday at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit in a lawsuit involving a Montgomery County, Md. law that forces pro-life pregnancy counselors to advise women against using their services.
The following quote may be attributed to Alliance Defending Freedom Legal Counsel Matt Bowman regarding Thursday’s decision by the full U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit to review a three-judge panel’s decision in Centro Tepeyac v. Montgomery County and Greater Baltimore Center for Pregnancy Concerns v. Mayor and City Council of Baltimore.
Bloomberg: The full U.S. Appeals Court in Richmond, Virginia, agreed to rehear a case involving a law that requires anti-abortion pregnancy centers to post an advisory encouraging their clients to consult with medical professionals. The court set Dec. 6 for oral arguments in the rehearing, accepting a request by Montgomery County, Maryland, to review a split decision by a three-judge panel.
Center for Reproductive Rights Petitions Full 4th Cir for Hearing on Advertising Rule for Crisis Pregnancy Centers
The Center for Reproductive Rights and the City of Baltimore filed a petition for a new hearing today before the full U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in their case defending a truth-in-advertising ordinance requiring crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs) to post modest signs in their waiting rooms indicating that they do not provide or make referrals for abortion or comprehensive birth control services.
Gary Bauer at Human Events: But the day before the much-heralded Obamacare decision, another court case was decided that has important implications for the First Amendment and the pro-life cause. The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Montgomery County, Maryland, cannot force a pro-life pregnancy center to post a public disclaimer that discourages pregnant women from using its services . . . So, with the help of lawyers from the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF), Tepeyac sued Montgomery County. A district court struck down the first part of the disclosure but upheld the second, on the grounds that it “does not require any other specific message and in neutral language states the truth.” But ADF filed an appeal, and on June 27, the entire disclosure requirement was struck down.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit affirmed Wednesday that laws in Baltimore and Montgomery County, Md. that force pregnancy resource centers to post signs discouraging women from using their services are unconstitutional.
The court held that the disclaimer required by Ordinance 09-252 is “a form of compelled speech” that “alters the course of a [pregnancy] center’s communication with a client or prospective client about abortion and birth-control” and “is based, at least in part, on disagreement with the viewpoint of the speaker.” The court entered a permanent injunction barring enforcement of the ordinance. For the reasons that follow, we affirm.
Alliance Defense Fund attorneys will be available for media interviews following oral argument at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit in a lawsuit involving a Montgomery County law that forces pro-life pregnancy counselors to advise women against using their services.
Mary Frances Boyle Heritage Foundation Foundry Blog: Earlier this year a federal judge found part of a similar law in Montgomery County, Maryland, unconstitutional. The law required pregnancy centers to post a sign in the waiting room notifying women that there is no medical professional on staff and encouraging them to see a licensed health care provider. With the help of organizations like the Alliance Defense Fund and American Center for Law and Justice, Slattery’s group fought the bill alongside other nonprofits like Boro Pregnancy Counseling Center and AAA Pregnancy Problems Center.
NRL News: Crisis Pregnancy Center Expected to Challenge New NY City Regulation Impeding Work of Women-Helping Centers
National Right to Life News: The suit was brought by Centro Tepeyac Women’s Center in Silver Spring, Maryland. It is one of four of what are called “limited-service pregnancy centers” affected by the law. The Alliance Defense Fund (ADF) sued on behalf of the Center on First Amendment freedom of speech grounds. “We will show that the county has no facts to justify the idea that any signs are needed except the ideological complaints of abortion activists,” Matt Bowman, an ADF attorney, told the Gazette newspaper. “There are no facts, no examples of a pregnancy center doing anything but offering real help to women.”
Daniel McConchie writes at LifeSiteNews: Mark Rienzi, an attorney allied with the Alliance Defense Fund and Americans United for Life, helped fight the law in court. In an email, he stated, “We’re very happy with the Judge’s ruling. The County has no business taking over the walls of pro-life pregnancy centers to tell women to go elsewhere.”
Gazette.net: Matt Bowman, an attorney with the Alliance Defense Fund, said he believed the pregnancy center would prevail. “We will show that the county has no facts to justify the idea that any signs are needed except the ideological complaints of abortion activists,” he said. “There are no facts, no examples of a pregnancy center doing anything but offering real help to women.”
Washington Examiner: “The First Amendment prevents the government from compelling people to speak the government’s message,” said Matt Bowman, a lawyer for the conservative Alliance Defense Fund, which filed the lawsuit. “That message was an attempt to force pregnancy centers to tell women to go somewhere else.” Lawyers from the Alliance Defense Fund challenged the law on behalf of Centro Tepeyac, a Silver Spring pregnancy clinic, which does not provide birth control or abortions. Bowman says the law targets pro-life organizations and infringes upon their First Amendment rights.
Daily Record: Chasanow barred Montgomery from enforcing that second requirement pending the outcome of the lawsuit brought by Centro Tepeyac, a Limited Service Pregnancy Resource Center in Silver Spring. The Alliance Defense Fund, a pro-life litigation group that is representing Centro Tepeyac, said the court “did the right thing.” “The First Amendment does not have an abortion exception to it,” ADF attorney Matt Bowman said. “Cities and counties cannot take over the walls of pro-life pregnancy centers and require them to tell women that they should go elsewhere.”
MSNBC (AP): “Lawyers for the Alliance Defense Fund, a conservative legal group, challenged the law on behalf of a pregnancy clinic that does not provide birth control or abortions, saying it was unconstitutional.”
Washington Post: “A federal judge has ruled that a portion of a Maryland county law targeting pro-life pregnancy clinics with signage requirements cannot be enforced . . . Lawyers for the Alliance Defense Fund, a conservative legal group, challenged the law on behalf of a pregnancy clinic that does not provide birth control or abortions, saying it was unconstitutional.”
Most of a Montgomery County law forcing pro-life pregnancy counselors to advise women against using their services was put on hold Tuesday by a federal court while a lawsuit against the ordinance moves forward. Alliance Defense Fund attorneys represent a Silver Spring pregnancy resource center in the lawsuit against the county.
The Examiner: Montgomery County’s top attorney is standing behind a local law that requires pregnancy centers to post signs in their waiting rooms informing patients if they don’t employ medically licensed professionals, even though a judge threw out a similar ordinance in Baltimore . . . But now the Alliance Defense Fund, a District-based organization that focuses on anti-abortion and freedom of speech cases — and represents Centro Tepeyac in the ongoing lawsuit — says the ordinance won’t be on the books much longer. “What it communicates to women is that the government thinks you should go somewhere else,” said attorney Casey Mattox. “The laws are virtually indistinguishable. They intentionally crafted this bill to make sure it would not cover abortions but would single out pregnancy centers.”
Christian Post: “U.S. District Judge Marvin J. Garbis ruled on Jan. 28 that city council violated the pregnancy centers’ freedom of speech by requiring “pro-life” pregnancy centers to post such a sign. Alliance Defense Fund Senior Council Casey Mattox anticipates the Baltimore judge’s ruling will be favorable towards the pending case of a Silver Spring pregnancy resource center forced to post signs declaring that it is a limited-service pregnancy center.”
Gazette.net: “The Baltimore case, though, is rather directly on point and should make it clear that the Montgomery County law also is unconstitutional,” said Casey Mattox, an attorney with the Alliance Defense Fund. The Alliance Defense Fund, based in Washington, D.C., specializes in free speech and anti-abortion cases. The organization is representing the pregnancy resource center for free. Mattox said both laws restrict pregnancy centers that do not provide abortions, and both also regulate the centers based on their speech. Both laws, he said, were specifically intended to avoid imposing restrictions on abortion facilities.”That’s viewpoint-based discrimination,” Mattox said, adding that abortion clinics are in need of further regulation.
Peggy Hartshorn, president of Heartbeat International, writing at the blog of the St. Michael Society: “In three places now, restrictions on center advertising have been rushed into place: Austin, Baltimore, and Montgomery County, Maryland. In case you missed it, two small pregnancy help centers in these targeted areas are suing to have the reputations of all our centers cleared! The Washington Post and Washington Times recently covered one of the lawsuits, just filed in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt, close to Washington, D.C., by the Alliance Defense Fund on behalf of a small Spanish language center, Centro Tepeyac. The other suit has been filed by the Archdiocese of Baltimore on behalf of Baltimore’s Center for Pregnancy Concerns. Yeah! We are not sitting still in this attempt at strangulation through regulation.”
Washington Times: “A crisis pregnancy center in Silver Spring has become the second group in Maryland to sue a Washington-area government over laws that pro-lifers say are part of a national campaign to snuff out anti-abortion speech . . . The Alliance Defense Fund, which is part of the legal team involved in the Montgomery County lawsuit, said NARAL’s investigations are part of a nationwide strategy by pro-choice groups to force crisis pregnancy centers nationwide to post signs so that women intending to get abortions will not unwittingly enter. ‘The CPCs are taking away their clients,’ spokesman [Matt Bowman] said.”
Gazette.net: “An anti-abortion pregnancy center has sued Montgomery County over a law requiring it to post information about the care it provides . . . Centro Tepeyac Women’s Center in Silver Spring says the law is unconstitutional, said [Casey Mattox], the center’s lead attorney. Mattox, with the Alliance Defense Fund, said the county law restricts freedom of speech.”
OneNewsNow: “Alliance Defense Fund (ADF) has filed suit against Montgomery County, Maryland, charging discrimination against pro-life pregnancy centers . . . ‘The government can’t create special speech rules just because people want to talk about pregnancy, and it absolutely can’t target pro-life speakers with these special requirements and fines,’ [Casey Mattox] contends.”
RH Reality Check: “Centro Tepeyac Women’s Center, which is being represented by the Alliance Defense Fund, claims that the disclaimer forces a set of ‘special speech rules’ that only pro-life speakers have to adhere to, where as pro-choice speech remains ‘unregulated.’ Lawyers for the Center so far have not addressed how stating that they do not have licensed medical staff on site violates their free speech rights.”
LifeSiteNews: “Attorneys with the Alliance Defense Fund filed suit this Wednesday against Maryland’s Montgomery County on behalf of the Centro Tepeyac Women’s Center . . . ADF Legal Counsel [Casey Mattox] said that Montgomery Council’s practices were unconstitutional. ‘The government’s enforcement of policies against pro-life pregnancy centers and its refusal to apply the same rules to abortion facilities is an unconstitutionally discriminatory practice,’ he said.”
Washington Post | Breaking News Blog: “An anti-abortion pregnancy center has sued Montgomery County over a law requiring it to post information about the care it provides, The Gazette reports. Centro Tepeyac Women’s Center in Silver Spring believes the law is unconstitutional, said the center’s lead attorney [Casey Mattox]. Mattox, with the Alliance Defense Fund, said the law restricts freedom of speech.”
WorldNetDaily: “A new law in a Maryland county that apparently intends to shut down the speech of pro-life counselors is being challenged in federal court by a pregnancy center that wants to continue offering free advice to mothers-to-be . . . ‘The government’s enforcement of policies against pro-life pregnancy centers and its refusal to apply the same rules to abortion facilities is an unconstitutionally discriminatory practice,’ said ADF Legal Counsel [Casey Mattox].”
Gazette.net: “An anti-abortion pregnancy center has sued Montgomery County over a law requiring it to post information about the care it provides. Centro Tepeyac Women’s Center in Silver Spring believes the law is unconstitutional, said the center’s lead attorney [Casey Mattox]. Mattox, with the Alliance Defense Fund, said the law restricts freedom of speech.”
LifeNews: “Alliance Defense Fund attorneys filed suit Wednesday against Montgomery County on behalf of a Silver Spring pregnancy resource center . . . ‘The government’s enforcement of policies against pro-life pregnancy centers and its refusal to apply the same rules to abortion facilities is an unconstitutionally discriminatory practice,’ said ADF Legal Counsel Casey Mattox.”