Federal Judge Stops Florida Law that Defunds Planned Parenthood
Last Thursday, a federal judge blocked a Florida law that attempted to defund Planned Parenthood, under the Supreme Court’s “unconstitutional conditions” doctrine. “Unconstitutional conditions” basically stop a state’s government from depriving a group of funds simply because it exercises a fundamental right that they find unacceptable. U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle, writing on behalf of the court, “a government cannot prohibit indirectly—by withholding otherwise-available public funds—conduct that the government could not constitutionally prohibit directly.”
Civil Liberties groups are counting this ruling as a significant victory for privacy rights, freedom of association, and personal autonomy. Conservative groups, including Governor Rick Scott, are likely not so happy.