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Missouri Supreme Court questions if the state can sue itself in the Planned Parenthood Case

September 28, 2000
By: Laetitia Thompson
State Capital Bureau

This is Laetitia Thompson for Missouri Capitol Caucus.

Planned Parenthood's efforts to get state funds for family planning came before Missouri's Supreme Court.

But you could say its become a legal conflict of interest.

The Missouri Legislature created a law preventing Planned Parenthood from receiving state money because of its abortion stand.

Under legislative pressure, the Attorney General contracted a private lawyer to represent that law.

But the Attorney General also represents the Health Department, which says Planned Parenthood should get the money.

Confused?

So were the Supreme Court Justices.

Actuality:court2
RunTime: 25 sec
OutCue:
Contents: Justices question lawyers about who is representing who and which lawyer represents the state.

That's the question the Supreme Court will need to decide.

Co-defendent and Director of Missouri's Health Department, Maureen Dempsey, criticized the proceedings.

Actuality:dempsey3
RunTime: 12 sec
OutCue:
Contents: Dempsey says the case is bizzare because the state is suing itself.

Dempsey also maintains Planned Parenthood should be eligible for pregnancy counseling funds.

A lower court disagreed.

From Jefferson City, I'm Laetitia Thompson.