Philadelphia Residents File Lawsuit Against City for Illegally Using Tax Dollars to Fund Abortions

State   |   Tom Ciesielka   |   Aug 17, 2022   |   1:05PM   |   Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

The City of Philadelphia and its mayor have been sued for giving away half a million taxpayer dollars to a group which exists solely to pay for abortions in Pennsylvania. Thomas More Society attorneys are representing citizens in the lawsuit against the City of Philadelphia, its Mayor James Kenney, Treasurer Jaqueline Dunn, and Controller Rebecca Rhynhart. The lawsuit asks the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas to enjoin the city and its officials from transferring the funds to the Abortion Liberation Fund of PA.

“The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania prohibits its funds from being spent on abortion, with rare exceptions,” stated Thomas More Society Special Counsel Thomas Breth. “Yet the mayor of Philadelphia is giving an unrestricted half million dollars to an organization for the expressed purpose of funding abortions.”

The Abortion Liberation Fund intends to not restrict its funding of abortions to comply with Pennsylvania’s clearly defined law, which requires that any state funded abortion be to prevent the death of the mother, or in cases of rape or incest, all of which require extensive documentation by physicians or law enforcement.

The website for the abortion group invites visitors to “Schedule an appointment for your abortion, even if you are unsure how you will pay for it” and encourages visitor secrecy stating, “Let us know if it is OK for us to leave a voicemail identifying ourselves as the ALF or if we should say this message is from your friend Jordyn.”

The lawsuit points to Pennsylvania’s public policy favoring childbirth over abortion, which states that, “no Commonwealth funds and no Federal funds which are appropriated by the Commonwealth shall be expended by any State or local government agency for the performance of abortion,” as recorded in the Statutes of Pennsylvania, Consolidated Statutes, Title 18, Chapter 32.

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Likewise, the Pennsylvania Abortion Control Act addresses the use of public funds, “No Commonwealth funds and no Federal funds which are appropriated by the Commonwealth shall be expended by any State or local government agency for the performance of abortion.”

Breth explained that Philadelphia’s actions are in direct violation of Pennsylvania’s prohibition against the use of public funds appropriated by the Commonwealth for the performance of abortion. He pointed out that the

City of Philadelphia annually receives billions of dollars of Commonwealth funds and/or Federal funds which are appropriated by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

“This move by the mayor is clearly politically motivated,” Breth observed, “It’s not that Philadelphia has an extra half million laying around to spend.” In March 2022, Philadelphia’s budget director Marisa Waxman told the media that “… federal funding is helping the city stay on budget, but those funds won’t go on forever.”

“This move by the mayor is contrary to state law,” added Breth, “and our clients intend to stop it.”

Read the Complaint for Injunctive and Declaratory Relief filed on August 16, 2022, by Thomas More Society attorneys on behalf of Charles P. Kuhar, Sr., and Theresa M. Kuhar, in Kuhar et al. v. City of Philadelphia et al. in the County of Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas here.