FRANKFORT, Ky. — The abortion giant Planned Parenthood is seeking the dismissal of a lawsuit filed by Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin over a location that was performing abortions without a license. Bevin, although identifying as pro-life, allows abortions as long as facilities are licensed according to state law.
As previously reported, Bevin announced the lawsuit against Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky, Inc. (PPINK) last month, as his administration stated that the Louisville location performed 23 unlicensed abortions between December and January.
Planned Parenthood has admitted that the abortions were indeed performed unlicensed, but said that the previous governor’s administration, Democrat Steve Beshear, had told them that they needed to have an unannounced inspection before they could obtain the license. The organization said that they concluded that in order to be inspected, the business would have to be open and operational.
“I don’t know how the Bevin administration proposes to resolve this apparent inconsistency in the law that you have to have an unannounced inspection before you can have a license,” attorney Thomas Clay told local television station WDRB.
Bevin’s administration noted that Planned Parenthood did submit an application for a license in November, but also provided what it called “sham” hospital and ambulance transfer agreements. The transfer agreements are required in order to be licensed, in addition to obtaining an inspection.
This placed “patients at extreme risk to their health, safety, and lives had an emergency occurred,” Bevin’s office said.
The lawsuit also accuses Beshear’s Inspector General, Maryellen Mynear, of telling Planned Parenthood officials that it was permissible to operate without a license the day before she and the rest of the previous administration left office. Bevin says that there is no such allowance in the law and that Mynear had no authority to suggest otherwise.
Now, Planned Parenthood is seeking to have the lawsuit dismissed, calling the legal challenge a “jaw-dropping display of authoritarian hypocrisy.” It filed a motion in court on Tuesday.
“Governor Bevin is on a mission to shut down access to that in this state regardless of what the constitution requires, regardless of what our own statutory regime requires and regardless of the recommendations of his own administrative cabinet,” attorney Laura Landenwich told local television station WHAS.
“We are saying that Planned Parenthood had a defacto license that was granted by the inspector general of the cabinet, not once, but twice did she approve the paperwork by Planned Parenthood and its application for a license,” Clay added.
Bevin’s office says in response that there is no basis for the lawsuit to be dismissed.
“Planned Parenthood’s motion to dismiss has no merit. The only thing jaw-dropping about this case is the fact that Planned Parenthood performed abortions without the required emergency agreements in place to protect women,” said spokesperson Jessica Ditto in a statement.
“The law is the law. Planned Parenthood does not dispute that it performed abortions without a license and without the required emergency agreements,” she noted. “These are clear violations of the law, and Planned Parenthood is desperately trying to distract attention from this fact.”
Bevin outlined last month that he personally opposes abortion, but since the law allows it, he feels he has to abide by state law and permit facilities to be licensed regardless of his belief that abortion is murder.
“Although I am an unapologetically pro-life individual, I recognize and accept that there are some laws on the books that I do not necessarily agree with,” he stated. “[M]y job is to ensure that they are followed regardless of my personal opinion.”