Idaho approves payment for court fees in anti-abortion case

BOISE - Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter and other top Idaho elected officials agreed to pay a $150,000 legal bill using funds originally intended to help Idaho navigate state sovereignty conflicts with the federal government.

The amount covers the attorney fees in a 2015 lawsuit filed by Planned Parenthood of the Greater Northwest and Hawaiian Islands over two anti-abortion laws banning the prescription of abortion-inducing drugs via telemedicine. Attorney General Lawrence Wasden and Planned Parenthood recently reached a settlement in the case, as well as how much the state should pay the organization's court fees.

The Constitutional Defense Fund Council unanimously approved the payment on Wednesday.

The Constitutional Defense Fund hasn't paid for a winning case since 1996, when Idaho reached a settlement with the federal government over nuclear waste storage and cleanup. The fund is overseen by Otter, Wasden, House Speaker Scott Bedke and Senate President Pro Tem Brent Hill.

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