Minnesota Gun Law’s Demise Won’t Affect Abortion Law Helping Women

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jul 16, 2004   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Minnesota Gun Law’s Demise Won’t Affect Abortion Law Helping Women

by Paul Nowak
LifeNews.com Staff Writer
July 16, 2004

St. Paul, MN (LifeNews.com) — A Minnesota law that requires women to be informed of the risks of and alternatives to abortion is not jeopardized by a recent ruling on a conceal-and-carry gun law, according to Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life.

Tuesday’s decision by Ramsey County District Judge John Finley to overturn the state’s concealed gun law is not expected to also invalidate the Women’s Right to Know Law, although they were passed by a similar process.

MCCL issued a statement clarifying the important differences between how the laws were passed, and why they do not expect the pro-life law to be overturned.

The Women’s Right to Know law conforms to the regulations of the Minnesota constitution by only having one subject. Although the pro-life bill had been attached to a circus regulations bill, the circus language was removed, and the title of the bill was changed to reflect the nature of the single-issue bill, informing women about abortion, its effects, and its alternatives.

The conceal and carry law, however, dealt with two subjects according to Judge Finley, and the title was not changed to reflect a single subject.

"Today’s ruling addresses aspects of the conceal and carry law that are not present in the Woman’s Right to Know law," said Jackie Moen, MCCL legislative associate. "We feel confident that this protective legislation will stand up to any challenge by organizations that do not want women to be informed about abortion risks and alternatives."

Moen also noted that the Woman’s Right to Know law requires that any court challenge be expedited directly to the Minnesota Supreme Court.

Despite the dissimilar aspects of the law that will help protect it from legal challenge, the pro-woman law has faced problems with its implementation.

In January, pro-life groups criticized Governor Tim Pawlenty’s removal of an acknowledgment of a link between abortion and breast cancer on the Women’s Right to Know website.

Pawlenty and Health Commissioner Dianne Mandernach apparently bowed to pressure from state medical groups and distention among health department employees over the language, despite clear evidence of the link in medical studies.

"On many different issues, such as the link between breast cancer and abortion, fetal pain and others, there were specific votes taken by the legislature," Scott Fischbach, Executive Director of Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life, told LifeNews.com. "We find it interesting that now, after the information is being provided, it is being criticized by the same people who opposed any information being afforded to the women."

"Not only did they object to the current language, the objected to any information to empower the woman," Fischbach added.

Similar laws in other states have reduced the abortion rate by as much as one-third.

Related web sites:
Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life – https://www.mccl.org