State of Maine Sues to Muzzle Pro-Life Preacher

Portland previously banned pro-life advocates from the public sidewalk in front of the same Planned Parenthood abortion clinic where Ingalls is preaching. City officials set up a 39-foot buffer zone around all of the entrances, exits, and driveways of the business.

Well, that didn’t last long. The Thomas More Law Center successfully challenged the constitutionality of Portland’s buffer zone ordinance in federal court and obtained a judgment declaring that the buffer zone violated the First Amendment.

Erin Kuenzig was the Thomas More Law Center’s trial counsel who argued on behalf of anti-abortion protestors who want to be as close as possible to women going into the Planned Parenthood clinic. She said with the lawsuit against Ingalls, Attorney General Mills has simply launched a new attack against pro-life speech.

A U.S. district court decision not only put a stop to the 39-foot buffer zone -- the city of Portland was also ordered to pay pro-life protesters’ legal bills of more than $56,000.

Kuenzig said the only reason Portland city officials enacted its buffer-zone ordinance was because they didn’t like the message pro-lifers were communicating outside of the city’s Planned Parenthood abortion clinic.

She argued there was never any legitimate reason for banning peaceful, law-abiding citizens from using the entire public sidewalk surrounding the downtown building that houses Planned Parenthood.

Now that the 39-foot buffer zone is gone, Kuenzig said if defies belief the city wants to push Ingalls outside an even larger zone.

But, maybe it is believable.

As far as Kuenzig and the Thomas More Law Center are concerned, it is typical throughout the nation for the abortion industry giant to seek to silence pro-life opposition, and the consequent threat to its substantial profits, by shutting down the free speech rights of “pro-life sidewalk counselors.”

“But this is the first time that the Maine Civil Rights Act has been used against pro-life advocates in an attempt to stifle their message and create a de facto 50-foot buffer zone,” Kuenzig said.

“The Attorney General’s baseless pro-abortion tactic seeks to silence pro-life speech,” she added. “Such biased action by a state’s chief law enforcement officer is not only unconstitutional, but it also corrupts the entire justice system.”