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Pro-life group declares victory in pregnancy center lawsuit

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(The Center Square) – The Thomas More Society is declaring victory after a U.S. District Court shut down Illinois’ pregnancy center law.

The lawsuit centered around Senate Bill 1909, which would have allowed the Illinois Attorney General’s Office to shut down pregnancy resource centers in Illinois if the AG’s office concluded they were conducting deceptive practices.

On Monday, after months of litigation, the Thomas More Society and Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul reached an agreement imposing a permanent injunction preventing implementation of the law.

Peter Breen of the Thomas More Society discussed what this means with The Center Square.

“The parties have now submitted to the courts an Agreed Order that would permanently enjoin Attorney General Kwame Raoul from enforcing Senate Bill 1909 against the plaintiffs,” Breen said. “This would be complete relief for the pregnancy centers in Illinois.”

The lawsuit stems from legislation passed by the General Assembly and signed by Gov. J.B. Pritzker.

“The legislature singled out fact statements about abortion and opinion statements about abortion, and the legislature cannot determine what is true or false in an area of significant public concern like abortion or any other hotly debated topic,” Breen said.

Breen said the issue with the law centered around free speech and how that is impacted when parties share different views.

“It makes a great statement, not only to the people of Illinois but to folks around the country, that free speech is important,” Breen said. “While we have disagreements on the issue of abortion or many other issues, the solution is not to silence our opponents. It is to allow more speech.”

SB1909, which has been called both “stupid” and very likely unconstitutional by courts in the past, will now never become law in Illinois and imposes a permanent injunction on Raoul preventing his office from enforcing it.

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