press release


News from Progress Michigan

September 22, 2022

Contact: Sam Inglot,

Republicans Have Spent $180,000 (So Far) in Taxpayer Funds Defending Archaic 1931 Abortion Ban

Responses to financial disclosure requests show Republican lawmakers have spent thousands in taxpayer money on legal services to undermine reproductive freedom 

MICHIGAN – Amidst the legal battle over Michigan’s 1931 abortion ban, Progress Michigan is submitting financial disclosure requests to the Michigan House and Senate Business Offices to determine if public resources are being spent on the Republican effort to defend this unpopular, draconian law. Responses show that as of September 16, over $180,000 of taxpayer money was used for legal services related to the 1931 abortion ban. Progress Michigan previously made financial disclosure requests and received responses on July 29, 2022 and August 26, 2022. Progress Michigan will continue to request updated information related to this issue. 

“Republicans have continued to spend taxpayer money pushing their extremist anti-abortion agenda and defending a law that rips reproductive freedom away from Michiganders,” said Lonnie Scott, executive director of Progress Michigan. “Our elected Republican lawmakers should be supporting the people of Michigan, who time and again have said they want to control their own reproductive health choices.” 

Progress Michigan sent requests by email on Monday, September 12, 2022 and received responses from both offices by email on Friday, September 16, 2022. The responses from the House Business Office and the Senate Business Office show that a total of $180,821.50 of taxpayer money was spent on legal services related to Michigan’s 1931 abortion ban. The funds were paid to Schaerr Jaffee LLP, a Washington, D.C. firm; Kienbaum Hardy Viviano Pelton & Forest PLC, based in Michigan; and to the Michigan Court of Appeals.

These responses are very limited in scope because the legislature is not subject to Freedom of Information Act requests.

Progress Michigan released polling earlier in September showing that 61 percent of Michiganders support keeping abortion legal in Michigan and released polling in August showing that 63 percent of Michigan voters support repealing the 1931 law and allowing abortion protections to remain in place, and 80 percent believe whether or not to get an abortion is a decision that should be made between a doctor and a patient.