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Both sides promise to fight on after judge allows Wisconsin abortion lawsuit suit to continue

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(The Center Square) – Groups and lawmakers on both sides of the abortion issue in Wisconsin are promising to fight on after a judge allowed the lawsuit against the state’s 1849 abortion law to continue.

Dane County Circuit Court Judge Diane Schlipper released her ruling that said Wisconsin’s Democratic governor and the state’s Democratic attorney general can continue to make their case that the law is unconstitutional and unenforceable.

There is no such thing as an ‘1849 Abortion Ban,” Schlipper wrote in her opinion. “A physician who performs a consensual medical abortion commits a crime only after the fetus or unborn child reaches viability.”

Schlipper wrote that because the 1849 law doesn’t use the word abortion. The law only referebces feticide.

The ruling, as expected, made pro-abortion groups and Democratic lawmakers happy.

“Wisconsinites have made it clear that our state’s barbaric, 174-year-old criminal abortion ban must be eliminated. Judge Schlipper’s ruling today means that path remains open,” Lucy Ripp, a spokeswoman for A Better Wisconsin Together said in a statement. “Wisconsin has come a long way in the last 174 years. It is time that the law, and those in power who make the law, join us in the year 2023 by ensuring all Wisconsinites can access reproductive healthcare, including abortion care.”

Sen. Kelda Roys, D-Madison, said the judge’s ruling is just the next step in the fight over abortion in Wisconsin.

“Wisconsinites should have the freedom to access necessary health care safely without leaving the state. The motion to dismiss moves us closer to restoring rights to receive abortion care as needed,” Roys said. “As Americans, we believe in freedom and no one’s freedom should be determined by the zip code they live in.”

Anti-abortion groups in Wisconsin also say the judge’s ruling is just the next step in the fight.

Heather Weininger, executive director of Wisconsin Right to Life said the judge’s ruling “is a devastating setback in our ongoing fight to protect Wisconsin’s preborn children. In the year since Roe v. Wade was overturned, we know that countless lives have been saved because of [Wisconsin’s abortion law].”

“While we are certainly disappointed that the judge did not dismiss this case, we are hardly surprised,” Wisconsin Family Action president Julaine Appling said. ““Activist judges at all levels of our judicial system will obviously find creative ways to interpret this law. This too is not surprising. We will now watch as this case moves through that system, and pro-life Wisconsin citizens will be watching and listening closely to see who the truly independent, rule-of-law, originalist jurists are in the courts where this lawsuit is being and will be handled.”

The case is expected to end up before the Wisconsin Supreme Court, but it remains to be seen just when the justices will get the case, or how far a 4-3 liberal court may rule.

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