Satanic Temple loses lawsuit against Indiana pro-life law — By: Catholic News Agency

Mischief Madness, a staff member at the convention, wears a custom-decorated mask with a pentagram on it at Satan Con in Boston, Massachusetts, on April 28, 2023. / Credit: JOSEPH PREZIOSO/AFP via Getty Images

Washington, D.C. Newsroom, Oct 27, 2023 / 10:40 am (CNA).

A group of Satanists lost a lawsuit against a major pro-life law in Indiana this week after a judge threw the case out for lack of standing. 

The Satanic Temple had filed a lawsuit in 2022 against Indiana’s Gov. Eric Holcomb and state Attorney General Todd Rokita, challenging the state’s sweeping pro-life law that year that largely outlawed abortion except in narrow circumstances. 

The Satanists had claimed that the state’s ban violated constitutional law as well as state religious freedom law. Their suit argued that abortions constitute an “exercise of [the] religious beliefs” of Satanists and that the pro-life law thus infringed on that right. 

In her ruling this week, District Court Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson tossed out the lawsuit, claiming that the Satanic Temple had failed to show it had any standing to bring it in the first place. 

“The Satanic Temple had an opportunity to submit evidence. It had notice of its standing defects. And it was given the opportunity to cure them. It has failed on all fronts,” Magnus-Stinson said. 

“Ultimately, the Satanic Temple has failed to prove by a preponderance of the evidence those facts essential for granting standing,” she wrote. 

The temple had “fail[ed] to prove it has suffered any injury in fact” from the abortion law, the judge said.

In a press release following the ruling, Rokita declared that his office had “beat the hell out of Satanic Temple’s efforts to sacrifice pro-life law.”

“This lawsuit was ridiculous on its face, but this court decision is important because it sustains a pro-life law that is constitutionally and legally sound,” Rokita said in the release. 

“We Hoosiers continue to build a solid culture of life whether satanic cultists like it or not,” he said. 

The Indiana Supreme Court had in June upheld the state’s pro-life law, with Rokita at the time declaring that the decision was “one long in coming, but morally justified.”

The state’s abortion ban allows for ​​exceptions in cases of rape and incest; abortions in those cases are legal up to 10 weeks after fertilization. The state also permits some exceptions to save the life of the mother or in the case of lethal fetal abnormalities.

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