FRANKFORT, Ky, — Attorney General Daniel Cameron is asking to take over the defense of two Kentucky abortion laws.
The Republicans filed a motion to intervene in the Western District Court of Kentucky Friday to defend Senate Bill 9, the “heartbeat” bill and House Bill 5, which bans abortions based on race, gender or discrimination against a challenge from EMW Women’s Surgical Center.
Former Governor Matt Bevin’s office was defending the laws against the challenge from EMW and ACLU brought after passage during the 2019 session.
In the motion, Cameron states his request to intervene is timely because he just took office a month ago.
“As a result, no one can say that Attorney General Cameron sat on his hands while this matter proceeded with his knowledge. In fact, Kentucky’s recent change of Attorneys General provides an “unusual circumstance militating…in favor of intervention,” the motion reads. “Simply put, prior to December 17, 2019, Attorney General Cameron lacked the authority to intervene in this matter on behalf of the Commonwealth.”
He further argues the case is still in its infancy, only being filed ten months ago with the court still deciding whether discovery will be allowed in the case.
Senate Bill 9 bans abortion in Kentucky after a fetal heartbeat is detected, which can happen as early as six weeks often before many women know they are pregnant. House Bill 5 bans abortions based on race, gender, or disability. A judge has issued a temporary injunction on the measures from taking effect until the case is heard in court.
“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 in a statement. “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.”
On Wednesday Cameron’s office was in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals appealing a May ruling striking down 2018’s House Bill 454 which required women receiving a dilation and evacuation abortion received a fetal demise injection first.
Click here for a copy of the motion.