Governor Doobadd Asks For another $1 Million To Defend Anti-Abortion Law In Court (H/T – Helga)

No money for books and healthcare but plenty for frivolous lawsuits. When are these clowns going to figure out a majority of South Dakotans are pro-choice;

This year the GOP-led South Dakota legislature passed a law requiring women seeking abortions to face a three-day waiting period – the nation’s longest – and undergo counseling at pregnancy “help centers” that discourage abortion. Recognizing that the law is an assault on women’s constitutional right to an abortion under Roe v. Wade, a federal judge granted an injunction in September to prevent the law from taking effect while it’s being challenged in Court. U.S. District Chief Judge Karen Schreier noted that the law creates an undue burden and would humiliate and degrade women.

Now South Dakota’s Gov. Dennis Daugaard is requesting more than $1 million in additional funds to defend the state’s anti-abortion law:

Next year’s South Dakota budget calls for more than a million dollars in supplemental funding for the state’s legal fund, including small fees for several high-profile cases but the potential for big expenses defending a controversial abortion law.

Gov. Dennis Daugaard’s budget proposal asks for the Legislature to add $1.043 million to the state’s Extraordinary Litigation Fund, which pays for legal costs above and beyond the ordinary.

Most of the Legislature’s projected costs come from two lawsuits: the 2005 Planned Parenthood vs. Rounds case over the state’s “informed consent” law, and ongoing “diligent enforcement” legal disputes with tobacco coverage. The state Office of Risk Management predicts the Planned Parenthood case to cost South Dakota $750,000 in Fiscal Year 2012, which runs through the end of June 2012.

Additionally, if South Dakota loses the lawsuit, it could be required to pay Planned Parenthood’s legal fees. When South Dakota lost another abortion case against Planned Parenthood several years ago, the state paid around $410,000 in legal fees.

As states are facing their worst budget crunches since the Great Depression, Republican-led governments have insisted on pushing conservative social agendas instead of focusing on pressing economic needs. In fact, they’ve exacerbated state budget deficits by passing anti-abortion laws that can cost millions for the state to defend but are rarely upheld in court. Kansas, for instance, has spent $2,180 of taxpayers money every daydefending its anti-abortion laws.

 



24 comments ↓

#1 scott on 12.14.11 at 7:47 am

what happened to all the private donors that were supposed to fund the lawsuits for the state on this????

#2 ol timer on 12.14.11 at 8:12 am

This was sold to the public on that fact, private funds will fight this in court. And the people we put in office can not figure out why we do not trust them?

#3 rufusx on 12.14.11 at 10:31 am

I wouldn’t say it was “sold” to the public, as the public has had no input on it. I would say it was sold to the legislators that voted for it on the basis of private funding for the KNOWN lawsuit that would be occuring because of it.

#4 Pam on 12.14.11 at 12:19 pm

Keep electing Republicans to every office in this State if this is how you want your tax money to be spent. When are voters going to look for candidates that actually have substance and conviction for the difficult issues facing all residents instead of focusing on abortion. It seems as if it’s the only issue these Republicans care about.

#5 cr on 12.14.11 at 2:18 pm

I think Roger Hunt and his “cronies” should provide the funding for this lawsuit!!!

#6 Oliver Klosov on 12.14.11 at 3:46 pm

Yeah, I don’t know why anyone would be the least bit concerned about a measly 45 million abortions over the past 38 years since Roe v Wade settled the law of the land. Those anti-abortion folks are just as bad as those do-gooders that kept harping about slavery. That was the settled law of the land for decades before those goody-two shoes abolitionists finally got their way. I just hope we don’t give in to the ridiculous demands of the anti-abortion crowd by outlawing our clearly defined constitutional right to shop-vac babies into the sewer like those post-Civil War pansies did with the American institution of slavery back in 1865.

#7 cr on 12.14.11 at 5:18 pm

No matter what side of the abortion issue you are on…………

South Dakota with its very limited financial resources has NO business taking on Roe v Wade!!!

#8 Joan on 12.14.11 at 7:45 pm

Oliver, it is nobody’s business if a woman chooses to have an abortion. At the stage most abortions are performed there is no baby, it is cluster of cells. Furthermore, no government should have any say in the decision, it should be strictly up to the woman, and shouldn’t involve any type of law enforcement. There shouldn’t have to be any laws at all regarding this matter. As far as all the abortions that have been performed, if they hadn’t been performed what would have happened to those prospective kids? A lot of people don’t approve of welfare, but that is exactly what would have been caring for a lot of those kids.

#9 scott on 12.14.11 at 7:52 pm

So I take it Ollie is going to be one of the contributors to the state’s defense find?

#10 scott on 12.14.11 at 7:53 pm

Sorry, defense fund. Damn iPhone.

#11 Oliver Klosov on 12.14.11 at 10:08 pm

History will be the judge of the right and wrong of the abortion issue. It is my sincere hope that the judgment comes before you and I are long dead and gone. Whenever that day comes I want to be standing on the side that defends and protects life. You pro-abortion types as well as you wishy-washy progressives who don’t want to impose human decency on others can stand on the side of the slavery advocates who placed their fellow human beings in bondage and subjected them to torture and death, the Nazis who exterminated millions of their fellow human beings and the many others guilty of Edmund Burke’s summary: “All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.”

#12 Oliver Klosov on 12.14.11 at 10:09 pm

And yes, I have and will continue to contribute to the defense of this scourge on our society.

#13 l3wis on 12.14.11 at 10:43 pm

The most troubling part about abortion is that it is preventable, just like Polio. If people used birth control or abstained (imagine that) abortion would not be an option. The problem is that the anti-choice people don’t even want people to explore the option of BC. So where is the middle ground? A few years back a mutual friend of a friend said it best. “BC should be in our public water system, if you want to have children, you must pass a financial and intelligence test, if you pass, we will give you the antidote.” And people are worried about flouride!?

#14 Costner on 12.15.11 at 9:13 am

It is difficult to talk about middle ground when you resort to calling people “anti-choice” l3wis.

I really don’t know why people get so worked up about this – there will always be two camps of people. Those who believe life begins at conception (or some other stage of human development prior to birth) who are the pro-lifers. Those who don’t believe a life begins until birth or at the very least until late in the pregnancy where a child could live outside the womb fall into the pro-choice camp.

The two will never agree, but I think for many Americans there is a happy medium. I won’t claim to know when life begins and I feel that anyone who does so is being dishonest. Nobody can tell me with a straight face that they know at this specific point a life is a life, whereas a second earlier it wasn’t. I don’t care if someone thinks like begins at conception, implantation, day 15, the first trimester, or birth… the reality is they just don’t know and it is 100% based upon opinion.

Why do I say this? Because if life begins at conception the human body is responsible for billions upon billions of “abortions” that many women never even know about. If the egg itself is life, then women should be holding a funeral every month when they have their period. If life begins at implantation, we should have millions of funerals every year for those ‘lives’ lost within the first few weeks, and if life begins at birth then a crazy boyfriend who punches his pregnant girlfriend in the gut numerous times three days before her expected due date resulting in the loss of the fetus he should get an assault charge rather than homicide.

The fact is, society cannot make up its mind when life begins. The medical community cannot make up its mind either, and even the religious right seems to get confused since the bible speaks of life beginning upon taking the first breath. There is no easy answer – there is no right answer – there is merely opinion.

So what is the solution? Beats me. Keep arguing about it I suppose.

I can’t fault those who honestly believe life begins at conception for doing what they can to protect those lives. Think about it – if you honestly felt that way no amount of money or tax revenue or hassle would sway you because when it comes to lives money isn’t the point. We don’t put a pricetag on human life, so if you believe 18 cells equal a human life you aren’t about to look at it from a financial perspective.

Granted if that is the case you might think they would be willing to give a bit more to the legal defense fund, because last I heard they barely had enough to be a nice used SUV. But I digress.

Also for those who feel it is only a woman who should choose or be able to engage in this debate because it is her body that is just silly. We legislate all types of things a person can and cannot do to their own body including prostitution, injestion of specific substances, even medical procedures based upon mental capacity. Plus, if someone really is convinced life begins at conception then they believe that is an individual life which should be protected until the point it can make a decision by itself. The “host” shouldn’t get to make the final call.

See – if you really boil it down in a 2000 word comment it is enough to piss off everyone on both sides of the debate, and as such we will never see concensus on the issue. If you really want to change viewpoints you better work on your own and convince yourselves that no matter what you believe, someone will always disagree with you and they aren’t going away in your lifetime.

Should there be common ground? Sure, but if you can get those ultra conservative religious types to start allowing free birth control or actually pushing the idea you’ll be a national hero, and if you can convince those on the far left that serial offenders (those who get abortion after abortion mixed in with a few kids they can’t provide for) should be sterilized then you might just get a monument named after you… but I don’t see it happening.

I like that idea of birth control in the water supply though. However if we really want it to be effective we would need to include it in Old Mil Light, Mountain Dew, and all Starbucks products.

#15 l3wis on 12.15.11 at 9:41 am

“I like that idea of birth control in the water supply though. However if we really want it to be effective we would need to include it in Old Mil Light, Mountain Dew, and all Starbucks products.”

And amazingly you would hit all classes of people on that one.

The funny part is that the American government has already decided when life begins, the day you get your SS card, the day you are born. And until the pro-life-anti-choicers get that changed, that is good enough for me.

Next thing you know, people will decide that life begins at first kiss.

#16 Costner on 12.15.11 at 11:50 am

I don’t think it is quite that simple DL. The government has also created laws that protect a fetus and treat it as a distinct life if it is injured or killed by a violent act etc. Plus a child doesn’t get a SS card or number assigned to them until weeks after birth… that doesn’t mean they aren’t alive.

I have a hard time believing a fetus isn’t “alive” one day prior to childbirth just as a I have a hard time believing 2, 4, or 6 cells is “alive”. Therein lies the problem – it is likely somewhere in between but you won’t ever find concensus on the issue so people will always have something to fight about.

Moderate people think the true answer is somewhere in between, but nobody can really nail down a firm time… so here we are. That said, since I admit I don’t know and can never know, I’d prefer to err on the side of caution. It might not be right and I admit as much, but the ramifications are a lot less harmful than the alternative.

Then again, you won’t find me preaching to others and telling them they must think the way I do either. That seems to be the problem with those on both extremes and as far as I’m concerned they are all far too close-minded.

#17 rufusx on 12.15.11 at 4:00 pm

Costner – the traditional – and by traditional I mean the entirety of human society from the begining up until around the last 25-30 years, I.E. 50,000 +/- years, religious and governmental views of when life begins has been when first breath is drawn. This even extends to Genisis account of God “breathing life” into Adam. Breath = life. Fetuses do NOT breath.

#18 Joan on 12.15.11 at 7:33 pm

Even if abortion is outlawed, there will still be abortions. They have existed since time immemorial and will continue to exist.

#19 l3wis on 12.15.11 at 9:36 pm

Ruf makes a good point, but, Costner, I was pointing out the contradictions of government with the SS card thingy. In the Catholic church, and many other christian organizations, you must be baptized before you are recognized as a member.

Semantics.

#20 Costner on 12.20.11 at 9:02 am

The Catholic church has specific language about what it means if a child is not baptised prior to death however. They understand babies might not survive childbirth, and in some cases they could pass away within the first few days due to a medical complication or SIDS or a host of other issues – yet this is obviously no fault of their own.

Baptism is an important part of their faith, but it does not define someone and these days is really more ceremonial than anything. Catholics aren’t truly members of the church until much later when they are Confirmed (typically about age 14-16) because in theory that suggests they are old enough to understand what they are getting themselves into and they can make a conscious decision.

I guess I don’t understand your idea of a contradiction. It isn’t like Catholics don’t believe a child is “alive” until baptism.

Ruf – not sure what your point is. Throughout history humans have got a lot of things wrong that have only been corrected the past 50 years or so. We used to think people of other races were inferior (and some still do think this). We used to think the Sun revolved around the moon. We used to think the Earth was flat. We used to think Dane Cook was funny… but people evolve and realize the things they used to believe may not be true.

I understand that some people at one point thought a child wasn’t alive until it took its first breath, but you will have a hard time convincing me that is accurate these days because that would suggest abortion should be legal right up to the day or even the minute before the child is born. That would also suggest someone who assaults a woman who is 9mos. pregnant couldn’t be held accountable if the fetus is harmed to the point it “dies”. Heck I can’t even figure out what words to use when a fetus is no longer “alive”.

This is my entire point – there has to be a happy medium between two extremes. Most people will agree a late term fetus is “alive” for lack of a better word, just as most people will agree that a glob of 24 cells probably isn’t “alive”.

That said… if we can’t come to an agreement in the middle, I would feel a whole lot better about defining 24 cells as a life than I would about definining a fetus one day prior to birth is not.

#21 Costner on 12.20.11 at 9:06 am

Joan – I understand your point, and I see this argument all the time but I don’t find it particular valid.

We know people will always steal… should we just forget about trying to prevent it?

We know people will always cheat on their wives, should we ban marriage?

We know people will always do drugs… should we legalize everything?

We know people will always speed and run red lights… should we remove all speed limits and stop lights?

We know people will always enjoy pop music… should we ban Ke$sha and Katy Perry? Well ok that is probably a bad example… but you get the point.

Just because people will always do something is no excuse to stand by and allow it to happen. Especially if you feel what they are doing is harmful to society. This is why I can’t fault people for trying to ban abortion if they are in fact honestly passionate about the issue. I can fault their logic, I can fault their tactics, I can fault their hypocrisy in some cases – but if they honestly believe they are working to save lives, how can I really fault their passion?

#22 l3wis on 12.20.11 at 11:55 am

I would agree with your last part, I have often admired the Unruh’s passion, while I disagree 100%, I do understand why they do what they do.

#23 Costner on 12.20.11 at 2:55 pm

Tough call on that one. Sometimes I’m conflicted on the Unruh’s because I’m not convinced their passion is legitimate or whether it is simply for personal gain.

We know they profit greatly by driving people to their “non-profit” pregnancy counciling centers. We also know Leslie goes out of the way to prevent common-sense reforms such as comprehensive sex ed, or supplemental funding for birth control which would reduce the number of abortions.

So maybe I’m a cynic, but I sometimes think the Unruh’s engage in this type of debate because it makes them feel important, it helps pad their bank accounts, and it builds their reputation.

Maybe I’m wrong – maybe they do what they do because they honestly do value life as much as they claim, but they sure have a funny way of showing it considering they care more about the unborn than they do for those of us who are actually alive and kicking.

#24 l3wis on 12.20.11 at 11:35 pm

and Allen gives oil and naked free massages.

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