The following comes from a May 30 story in the Billings Gazette.
Planned Parenthood of Montana filed suit Thursday to overturn a pair of laws requiring an underage girl to get parental approval or notification before having an abortion in Montana —including one law passed last year by Montana voters.
Planned Parenthood, which performs abortions in Montana, said the laws violate Montanans’ right to privacy and unconstitutionally discriminates against girls who would choose to have an abortion.
The lawsuit filed in state District Court in Helena targets two recently passed laws:
— One passed by Montana voters in 2012 requiring any girl under 16 to notify a parent before obtaining an abortion. The law, passed as a referendum placed on the ballot by the 2011 Legislature, took effect in January. It passed with 70.5 percent of the voters in favor.
— A bill passed by the 2013 Legislature that would supersede the current law, requiring all girls under 18 to get notarized parental consent before having an abortion. The law is scheduled to take effect July 1.
The suit asked District Judge Mike Menahan to block enforcement of the second law as of July 1 and void both of them as unconstitutional.
Stacey Anderson, director of public affairs for Planned Parenthood, said her group wants teenagers to talk to their parents about sexuality, but that some are unable to do so.
….Attorney General Tim Fox, a Republican, said through a spokesman that he’ll “defend these laws vigorously at every stage of the process.”
….The parental-consent law passed in April, on a 52-48 vote in the House and 28-21 in the Senate. Gov. Steve Bullock, a Democrat opposed to the law, let it become law without his signature so Planned Parenthood could challenge it in court.
His action voided another bill that would have sent the issue to Montana voters as a referendum in 2014.
The parental-notification rule became law after Montana voters approved Legislative Referendum 120 last November. The 2011 Legislature, controlled by Republicans, chose to send the issue to voters instead of passing a bill, which faced a likely veto by then-Gov. Brian Schweitzer…..
To read the original story, click here.