US

Ohio Judge Refuses To Step Down From Abortion Case

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Grace Carr Reporter

Ohio Supreme Court Justice Sharon Kennedy said Monday that she will not recuse herself from a case determining whether to close an abortion clinic after the Capital Care Network accused her of being partial to the pro-life cause.

After Kennedy gave speeches at a legislative briefing fundraiser in March and the Greater Toledo Right to Life’s annual breakfast in May, Capital Care filed an official request to remove her from the jury, according to The Blade. Included in the legislative measures that Kennedy discussed were the Humanity of the Unborn Education Act, Women’s Right To Know Act, Child Abuse Reduction Act (CARA), and the Heartbeat Bill, according to the Greater Toledo Right To Life 2017 Legislative update.

Kennedy denied, however, that her involvement with the events would bias her decision determining whether or not to close the last abortion in Toledo, Ohio. “Having reviewed the request, I find it to be without merit and will continue to participate in the case,” Kennedy said in a statement.

The state posits that the abortion clinic must close because it doesn’t have an agreement with the local hospital to transfer patients in the event of a medical emergency during abortion procedures. (RELATED: Oregon Rep Calls Out NARAL And Planned Parenthood’s ‘Far-Left Agenda’)

The abortion clinic’s request to remain open cited Kennedy’s speech and her endorsements of pro-life organizations as evidence that she would not rule fairly on the case, according to the clinic’s attorney, Jennifer Branch.

The Toledo abortion clinic has a written agreement with the Ann Arbor University of Michigan Health System, but it doesn’t suffice because the Ann Arbor hospital is more than 50 miles away and is therefore not considered local, according to Ohio’s Department of Health.

The case will be heard in court Sept. 12.

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