Kevin Theriot, an attorney for Alliance Defending Freedom, says the law firm is representing Right to Life of Central California over what it calls a “no free-speech zone” that is 100 feet from an abortion clinic.
The law bans protesters from gathering near any place that provides vaccinations which, conveniently enough, includes Planned Parenthood abortuaries and other abortion clinics in the state.
“What it does is it limits pro-life speech in a way that violates the Constitution,” Theriot alleges. “The government is picking and choosing which speech to allow because it does allow some speech in the zone, but not pro-life speakers."
For example, Theriot says the law has an exception for labor-related speech, such as employees picketing for better benefits, but abortion protesters must remain far away.
Gov. Gavin Newsom signed the legislation, SB 742, into law last week.
Violation of the law is punishable by a fine of up to $1,000 or up to six months imprisonment in county jail or both.
"We fill be filing a request that the court stop enforcement of the law right away," says Theriot, referring to a temporary restraining order.
Right to Life of Central California v. Bonta is filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California.