Attorney General Cameron Files Motion to Defend Commonwealth’s Pro-Life Heartbeat and Anti-Discrimination Laws

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Jan. 31, 2020) – Attorney General Daniel Cameron today filed a motion in the United States District Court for the Western District of Kentucky to defend the Commonwealth’s pro-life heartbeat (SB 9) and anti-discrimination (HB 5) laws from a current court challenge brought by a Kentucky abortion clinic, EMW Women’s Surgical Center, represented by lawyers for the ACLU. 

“It is my duty to fight for those who cannot fight for themselves, and it is my job to stand in the gap and defend Kentucky’s pro-life laws,” said Attorney General Cameron.  “Kentuckians have made it abundantly clear that they support the unborn, and I am committed to doing everything I can to protect the sanctity of life and defend the will of the people by joining this case.”

In the motion, Attorney General Cameron urges the court to allow him to intervene on behalf of the Commonwealth.  He states that it is the job of the Attorney General as the Commonwealth’s Chief Law Officer to defend the laws passed by the General Assembly from constitutional challenges, such as those pending against SB 9 and HB 5.  Both bills were passed with overwhelming support by the 2019 General Assembly.

SB 9 bans abortions in Kentucky after a fetal heartbeat is detected, usually around six weeks into a pregnancy.  In passing this pro-life measure into law, the General Assembly noted that fetal heartbeat “has become a key medical predictor that an unborn human individual will reach live birth.”

HB 5 bans discriminatory abortions based upon race, gender, or disability. The law extends to the unborn the same anti-discrimination protections afforded to citizens outside of the womb.

Earlier this year, SB 9 and HB 5 were temporarily blocked from taking effect until the current court case is decided.  Attorney General Cameron noted that his request to intervene in the lawsuit would not delay the current timeline for court proceedings since discovery has not yet taken place and the judge has resolved very few substantive issues.

Click here to view a copy of Attorney General Cameron’s memorandum in support of the motion to intervene.