Oakland County judge upholds order to stop prosecution of 1931 abortion law

An Oakland County judge has upheld a temporary restraining order that was requested by Governor Gretchen Whitmer to prohibit enforcement of Michigan’s 1931 statute criminalizing abortion. The injunction prohibits local county prosecutors from criminally prosecuting abortion in Michigan while the order is pending.

The Michigan Court of Appeals overturned the May ruling that blocked the 1931 state law from going into effect. The law restricts almost all forms of abortion, regardless of incest and rape and was suspended in a Michigan Court of Claims ruling in a case involving Planned Parenthood. 

Shortly after the Court of Appeals made the ruling, Whitmer requested the order, which was immediately granted and then challenged by the opponents.

On Wednesday, both sides appeared in court for a hearing on the ruling, where the judge ruled that the order will remain in place. 

Oakland County Judge Jacob Cunningham agreed after lawyers for Whitmer argued that extinguishing his Monday order would cause chaos around the state. 

The restraining order will hold at least until the next hearing on Aug. 17. 

Pro-life advocates told FOX 2 they plan to fight the order. 

David Kallman represents prosecuting attorneys from Jackson and Kent Counties, along with attorneys for Right to Life Michigan and the Michigan Catholic Conference. He promised they'd be in court on Wednesday to fight.

"We had no opportunity to respond, no opportunity to weigh in on the issues and in our opinion, this is an egregiously wrong injunction that the judge has issued," he said. "We're going to be in court tomorrow at 2:30 asking the judge to lift the temporary restraining order. If he doesn't, if he keeps it in place we're going to appeal immediately to the court of appeals."

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.