Capitol - Your Illinois News Radar » Rauner sued over new “Right of Conscience” law
SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Rauner sued over new “Right of Conscience” law

Friday, Aug 5, 2016

* Press release

Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys representing an Illinois doctor and two pregnancy care centers filed suit Friday in state court against Gov. Bruce Rauner after he recently signed a bill into law that forces doctors and medical facilities to promote abortion regardless of their ethical or moral views on the practice.

ADF sent a letter to Rauner in May on behalf of numerous pro-life physicians, pregnancy care centers, and pregnancy care center network organizations advising him that the bill, SB 1564, would violate federal law and therefore place federal funding, including Medicaid reimbursements, in jeopardy. ADF also warned legislators about the problems with the bill last year. The lawsuit claims the new law, which is actually an amendment to the existing Illinois Healthcare Right of Conscience Act, violates state law and the state constitution.

“No state should attempt to rob women of the right to choose a pro-life doctor by forcing pro-life physicians and entities to make or arrange abortion referrals. What’s even worse is that Illinois did this by amending a law designed specifically to protect freedom of conscience,” said ADF Senior Counsel Matt Bowman. “The governor should have vetoed this bill for many reasons, including its incompatibility with Illinois law and the state constitution, which specifically protects freedom of conscience and free speech.”

The new law forces medical facilities and physicians who conscientiously object to involvement in abortions to adopt policies that provide women who ask for abortions with a list of providers “they reasonably believe may offer” them. Illinois law prohibits government from placing burdens on religious conscience without a compelling interest for doing so. Additionally, the Illinois Constitution protects “liberty of conscience,” saying that “no person shall be denied any civil or political right, privilege or capacity, on account of his religious opinions.” It also protects free speech, which includes the right not to be compelled by government to speak a message contrary to one’s own conscience.

“Pro-life health care professionals shouldn’t be forced to hand out lists describing how to contact abortionists, yet that’s what this law mandates that they do,” explained ADF Senior Counsel Kevin Theriot. “If this profane amendment to Illinois’ conscience protection law remains on the books, doctors and medical staff committed to saving all lives will be forced to promote the killing of some children, women will lose access to doctors who unconditionally value human life, and pregnancy resource centers that offer free help and hope to pregnant women will be forced to refer to abortionists. This is the kind of government coercion that the state constitution, the state Religious Freedom Restoration Act, and the very law that was amended were all designed to prevent.”

Mauck & Baker LLC attorney Noel Sterett, one of more than 3,000 private attorneys allied with ADF, is co-counsel in the case, The Pregnancy Care Center of Rockford v. Rauner, filed in the Circuit Court of the 17th Judicial Circuit in Winnebago County.

The main targets of this new law are those crisis pregnancy centers. Click here to read the lawsuit. And click here to read the letter the group sent the governor in May.

* Meanwhile, the AP has finally gotten around to covering this story. Click here.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Demoralized - Friday, Aug 5, 16 @ 1:23 pm:

    This is more of turning “religious freedom” into a right to not do whatever things you don’t happen to agree with. It seems that these people believe that in their case their rights trump everyone else’s rights. They aren’t being asked to perform the service, they are being asked to tell someone where they can get a LEGAL service that they may need or want.

  2. - Anon - Friday, Aug 5, 16 @ 1:30 pm:

    Haha! Even though I think he did the right thing I’m still happy he’s getting sued again. Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy!

  3. - MSIX - Friday, Aug 5, 16 @ 1:31 pm:

    =…that forces doctors and medical facilities to promote abortion …=

    Can anyone in this state ever write something truthful? Listing options is hardly forcing someone to promote something.

  4. - MSIX - Friday, Aug 5, 16 @ 1:34 pm:

    So the governor would be defended, I assume, by the AG, right? Just as Duckworth was? Will these people complain that their tax dollars are being spent to defend someone who “promotes” abortion?

  5. - walker - Friday, Aug 5, 16 @ 1:37 pm:

    Pretty tortured logic to get to the claim that this law aims to force “pro-life” doctors to leave Illinois.

  6. - Politically Incorrect - Friday, Aug 5, 16 @ 1:44 pm:

    I may face a lot of legal criticism, but this indeed is a difficult balance between free speech and freedom of religion. Not a slam dunk for either side.
    Interesting to note the choice of county for filing and the obvious lack of any federal law so that the issue remains solely in the hands of the Illinois judiciary. I find it hard to predict how the Illinois Supreme Court may rule on this.

  7. - Crispy Critter - Friday, Aug 5, 16 @ 2:21 pm:

    What if a doctor were to promote having the baby adopted instead and not even mention abortion. Adoption is saving a baby whereas abortion is killing a baby. Doctors study medicine to promote health for people; abortion is hardly promoting a healthy baby. +++ And “Demoralized” stated: This is more of turning “religious freedom” into a right to not do whatever things you don’t happen to agree with.+++ What if the government decided that everyone should go to church on Sunday and worship GOD? Would you just go even though you don’t agree with that? I bet you would complain then. Maybe instead of “Black Lives Matter”, maybe we need a “Baby Lives Matter” slogan instead, and that might save black, white, and all other races as well.

  8. - Past the Rule of 85 - Friday, Aug 5, 16 @ 2:38 pm:

    I think the medical professionals should be more concerned about “First, do no harm” to their patients than trying to impose their religion on women who are facing extraordinarily difficult situations. This,the hatred towards gays and other religious intolerance make me believe Sharia law is not necessarily limited to Islam.

  9. - Demoralized - Friday, Aug 5, 16 @ 2:58 pm:

    ==What if a doctor were to promote having the baby adopted==

    I don’t think they are prohibited from mentioning that.

    ==What if the government decided that everyone should go to church on Sunday and worship GOD? Would you just go even though you don’t agree with that? ==

    Yeah, that’s certainly a rational point. Not. That’s a ridiculous rabbit hole to go down.

    Abortion, like it or not, is a legal medical procedure. I see no reason why someone should not be required to provide information on where they can get that legal medical services if that person has chosen not to provide that service. I’m for providing information on all options - abortion, adoption, having the baby. Nobody should be attempting to hinder any decision that might be made. It’s a difficult enough decision as it is.

  10. - Jay Dee - Friday, Aug 5, 16 @ 3:16 pm:

    “I see no reason why someone should not be required to provide information”

    I think your approach to the issue is incorrect. It is not on the individual to prove why they should not be forced to do something, but rather the burden is why that individual must do something.

    In the age of the internet, information is widely easy to access for various options regarding abortion, adoption, etc. In the pre-internet days, I would be more likely to agree with you. But today, there are other ways the same information can be obtained without laws and regulations.

  11. - SKI - Friday, Aug 5, 16 @ 3:19 pm:

    As I understand it, all they would need to do is provide a list of hospitals or clinics that may perform the procedures that patient is requesting information on. Nothing more. Again, I could be wrong, but that does not seem so bad.

    If they really have an issue with providing a list of places the patient can contact and think that by doing this they are promoting abortion, then hand out information about adoption or non-profits that help mother’s in need too.

  12. - Liandro - Friday, Aug 5, 16 @ 4:22 pm:

    And another of my comments doesn’t exist, heh. Ok then.

  13. - Liandro - Friday, Aug 5, 16 @ 4:24 pm:

    “First, do no harm”

    That’s EXACTLY what they are doing. There are two human lives involved, and one of them may get ended (does that meet the moderation test?).

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

* Pritzker contributes $51.5 million to his "Fair Tax" campaign account
* *** UPDATED x1 *** SUBSCRIBERS ONLY: This just in...
* Reader comments closed for the holiday weekend
* *** UPDATED x3 *** Devore tells reporters he's won both cases
* Question of the day
* 869 new cases, 36 additional deaths, 2.6 percent positivity rate
* *** UPDATED x2 - ILGOP will appeal *** Federal judge denies ILGOP's TRO request: "Granting Plaintiffs the relief they seek would pose serious risks to public health"
* Today's must-watch video
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY: New ads; More react to Wednesday's edition (password fixed)
* After returning from Florida, Rep. Bailey won't get tested "on the advice of his doctor"
* We're number one... in FBI gun background checks during June
* White Sox vs. Cardinals at Field of Dreams game
* Lightfoot spins tall tale to justify preemptive sweeps
* Well, that escalated quickly
* If you want schools to reopen, wear a mask, keep your distance and wash your hands
* 1.43 million Americans, 45.25 thousand Illinoisans filed new unemployment claims last week
* Open thread
* Yesterday's stories

Visit our advertisers...





Main Menu
Pundit rankings
Subscriber Content
Blagojevich Trial
Updated Posts

July 2020
June 2020
May 2020
April 2020
March 2020
February 2020
January 2020
December 2019
November 2019
October 2019
September 2019
August 2019
July 2019
June 2019
May 2019
April 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004

Blog*Spot Archives
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005


RSS Feed 2.0
Comments RSS 2.0

Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller