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Ending Abortion in Florida Through Local Ordinances: A Way Forward


Bioethics in Law & Culture                                                                                                                                    Fall  2021       vol. 4  issue  4

Andrew Shirvell, J.D.

Executive Director

Florida Voice for the Unborn

Abortion in the United States has claimed the lives of more than sixty-two million unborn children since it was legalized throughout the country in 1973.  Pro-life advocates have worked to stop this continuing carnage by employing a multitude of strategies.  One important approach involves local governments tackling the issue directly.  While this tactic is not new, it has gained greater attention due to the recent success of the "Sanctuary Cities for the Unborn" movement in Texas, Nebraska, and Ohio.  Pro-lifers are attempting to replicate this movement in Florida, which has the nation’s fifth-highest abortion rate.[i]  However, their ongoing efforts have been frustrated.  The purpose of this article is to explain the source of the main impediments and to provide a way forward so prohibiting abortion at the local level in the Sunshine State can become a reality in the not-so-distant future.  


I.   The Development of Sanctuary Cities for the Unborn

There are local communities all over the United States where a substantial majority of residents highly value the dignity of human life in the womb and, therefore, oppose abortion.  While Planned Parenthood and its abortion industry cohorts have traditionally set up shop in more liberal enclaves, they prey on vulnerable women everywhere and often attempt to move into more conservative communities when the opportunity presents itself.[ii]  Consequently, pro-life advocates have long sought effective ways to keep their local communities abortion-free.  


In the spring of 2018, a former Solicitor General of Texas, Jonathan F. Mitchell, wrote an article entitled, "The Writ-of-Erasure Fallacy," published in the Virginia Law Review.[iii]  This article would become the legal blueprint for the Sanctuary Cities for the Unborn movement, which has resulted in almost forty conservative municipalities enacting ordinances that have effectively outlawed abortions within their borders (as of October 8, 2021).[iv] 


Mitchell, a former law clerk of the late great United States Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, describes the “writ-of-erasure fallacy” as “the fallacy that equates judicial review with a veto-like power to ‘strike-down’ legislation or delay its effective start date.”[v]  He argues that this fallacy occurs “when judges or elected officials mistakenly assume that a court decision has canceled or revoked a duly enacted statute.”[vi]  According to Mitchell, when a court – including the U.S. Supreme Court – rules that a legislative body’s statute is not constitutional, that statute does not magically disappear.  Rather, such judicial pronouncements “are always subject to reversal on appeal or repudiation by a future Supreme Court, and the temporarily disapproved statute continues to exist as a law until it is repealed by the legislature that enacted it.”[vii] 


Mitchell contends that there are two main ways that a legislative body can encourage compliance of a statute regardless of how a court may rule on a legal challenge to that statute.  The first way is to include “public enforcement” mechanisms:


If legislators are worried that a court might block the law’s enforcement – and if they want the statute to remain effective despite the judiciary’s opposition – then they can specify in the statute that: 1) There will be no statute of limitations for the civil and criminal penalties provided in the law, or (at the very least) the statute of limitations will be tolled if a court declares the statute unconstitutional or enjoins its enforcement; 2) There will be no mistake-of-law defense for those who violate the statute in reliance on a judicial pronouncement of unconstitutionality; and 3) Those who violate the statute remain subject to penalties even if they act at a time when the courts have blocked the statute’s enforcement.[viii]  



The second avenue is to permit “private enforcement” by citizens:


The legislature can also induce compliance with its statutes by providing for private enforcement through civil lawsuits and qui tam relator actions.  These mechanisms are especially powerful because they enable private litigants to enforce a statute even after a federal district court has enjoined the executive from enforcing it…Unless and until the Supreme Court of the United States declares a statute unconstitutional, the States remain free to authorize and entertain private enforcement actions in their own courts – even after a federal district or circuit court has disapproved the statute and enjoined the State’s executive from enforcing it.[ix]



Moreover, because “a defendant has no entitlement to attorneys’ fees when he asserts his constitutional rights defensively in a private enforcement action…the need to foot one’s own legal bills may induce statutory compliance even for those who expect to prevail on their constitutional objections.”[x]


Although the strategy outlined above is unorthodox, Mitchell readily admits in a footnote that it had been successfully employed at the federal level more than a decade before he wrote his law review article:


When Congress enacted the Partial-Birth Abortion Act of 2003, for example, it not only imposed criminal liability on physicians who violated the statute, it also established a private right of action that allowed the father or maternal grandparents of the fetus to sue for statutory damages.  When the federal district courts enjoined the Attorney General from enforcing the statutes, they did not (and could not) enjoin the enforcement of the private right of action, as the potential plaintiffs in these future lawsuits could not be identified and were not parties to the litigation.  It is practically impossible to bring a pre-enforcement challenge to statutes that establish private rights of action because the litigants who will enforce the statute are hard to identify until they actually bring suit.[xi]


The Sanctuary Cities for the Unborn movement was conceived in 2019 when Right to Life of East Texas’ director, Mark Lee Dickson, sought to prevent the possible relocation of an abortion facility to the conservative Texas town of Waskom, near the Louisiana border.[xii]  Dickson teamed up with Mitchell and Texas state Senator Bryan Hughes (R–Mineola) to draft a city ordinance that would prevent abortion facilities from opening within Waskom.[xiii]  The proposed ordinance was drawn up based on the precepts Mitchell outlined in his 2018 Virginia Law Review article and highlighted supra.[xiv]  It passed the Waskom City Council on June 11, 2019, making Waskom the first municipality in the nation to become a Sanctuary City for the Unborn.[xv]  


Other cities in Texas soon followed Waskom’s lead, resulting in the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filing suit against seven east Texas cities in February 2020 on behalf of two pro-abortion organizations.[xvi]  However, the lawsuit was quickly settled when the cities agreed to amend their ordinances to drop language that labeled the two pro-abortion plaintiffs as "criminal entities."[xvii]  When Waskom passed its new Sanctuary City for the Unborn ordinance (hereafter “sanctuary ordinance”) in March 2020,  Right to Life of East Texas’ Dickson explained that, as passed, the new ordinance was actually stronger than the one previously enacted in 2019 because exceptions for allowing abortions in cases of rape or incest had been removed.[xviii]          


The amended Waskom ordinance is the version that has been essentially replicated by thirty-six Texas cities and two municipalities in Nebraska, and one in Ohio (as of October 8, 2021).[xix]  The ordinance declares, “abortion at all times and at all stages of pregnancy…to be an act of murder with malice aforethought.”[xx]  It states that the following acts are unlawful:



  1. ABORTION – It shall be unlawful for any person to procure or perform an abortion of any type and at any stage of pregnancy in the City of Waskom, Texas.

  2. AIDING OR ABETTING AN ABORTION – It shall be unlawful for any person to knowingly aid an abortion that occurs in the City of Waskom, Texas.  This section does not prohibit referring a patient to have an abortion outside the city limits of Waskom, TX.  This includes, but is not limited to, the following acts:

  1. Knowingly providing transportation to or from an abortion provider;

  2. Giving instructions over the telephone, the internet, or any other medium of communication regarding self-administered abortion;

  3. Providing money with the knowledge that it will be used to pay for an abortion or the costs associated with procuring an abortion;

  4. Coercing a pregnant mother to have an abortion against her will.[xxi]


The ordinance provides an affirmative defense, which permits an abortion only if it occurred “in response to a life-threatening physical condition aggravated by, caused by, or arising from a pregnancy that, as certified by a physician, places the woman in danger of death or a serious risk of substantial impairment of a major bodily function.”[xxii]


Notably, the ordinance does not provide for any criminal penalties.  Rather, the punishment for failing to adhere to the ordinance is “the maximum penalty permitted under Texas law for the violation of a municipal ordinance governing public health,” with each violation constituting a separate offense.[xxiii]  That amounts to a $2,000.00 fine per offense.[xxiv]  The mother of an aborted unborn child is not subject to punishment.[xxv]   


To encourage compliance, the ordinance adopts both the public and private enforcement mechanisms that Mitchell discusses in his law review article: 



1.  Neither the City of Waskom, nor any of its officers or employees, nor any district or county attorney, nor any executive or administrative officer or employee of any state or local government entity, shall take any steps to enforce this ordinance against a person or entity that commits an unlawful act described in Section C, unless and until the Supreme Court overrules Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973), and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, 505 U.S. 833 (1992), and permits states and municipalities to enforce abortion prohibitions once again.[xxvi]    





1.   A person or entity that commits an unlawful act described in Section C.1 or C.2, other than the mother of the unborn child that has been aborted, shall be liable in tort to any surviving relative of the aborted unborn child, including the child’s mother, father, grandparents, siblings or half-siblings, aunts, uncles, or cousins.  The person or entity that committed the unlawful act shall be liable to each surviving relative of the aborted unborn child for:

(a) Compensatory damages, including damages for emotional distress;               (b) Punitive damages; and                                                                                           (c) Costs and attorneys’ fees.


There is no statute of limitations for this private right of action.


2.  Any private citizen may bring a qui tam relator action against a person or entity that commits or plans to commit an unlawful act described in Section C, and may be awarded: 

(a) Injunctive relief;

(b) Statutory damages of not less than two thousand dollars ($2,000.00) for each violation, and not more than the maximum penalty permitted under Texas law for the violation of a municipal ordinance governing public health; and

(c) Costs and attorneys’ fees;


Provided that no damages or liability for costs and attorneys' fees may be awarded or assessed against the mother of the unborn child that has been aborted.  There is no statute of limitations for this qui tam relator action.[xxvii]



The ordinance specifically excludes all government officials and employees from bringing a qui tam relator claim.[xxviii]  And whereas public enforcement is contingent upon the U.S. Supreme Court substantially revising its abortion jurisprudence sometime in the future, private enforcement is immediate in that private enforcement is authorized to commence on “the effective date of the ordinance, regardless of whether the Supreme Court overrules [Roe, supra, and Casey, supra], or permits states and municipalities to once against enforce abortion prohibitions.”[xxix]


Thus far, the overwhelming majority of municipalities that have enacted sanctuary ordinances have been small, conservative jurisdictions in Texas.[xxx]  In fact, no city that passed such an ordinance had an actual operating abortion facility within its borders – that is, until Lubbock, Texas (with a population of 264,000 residents), successfully enacted its ordinance via a citizens’ referendum on May 1, 2021, after the city council had previously rejected it.[xxxi]  Although Planned Parenthood sued to keep performing abortions in Lubbock despite the ordinance, its lawsuit was dismissed because the federal district court found it did not have proper jurisdiction over the case since it could not enjoin the private enforcement mechanisms – which is exactly what Mitchell, in his 2018 law review article, correctly envisioned would happen.[xxxii] 


Consequently, Planned Parenthood has not performed any abortions in Lubbock since June 1, 2021 (the day the city ordinance went into effect) for fear of being sued by private citizens.[xxxiii]  The remarkable success of Lubbock’s ordinance in stopping abortions from occurring – not just in theory but in actuality – has only intensified pro-life advocates’ interest in seeing sanctuary ordinances adopted in their home communities.  Unfortunately, as will be discussed infra, in Florida, recent pro-life efforts at the local level have been thwarted.


II.   Local Attempts in Florida to Enact Sanctuary Ordinances and Other Anti-Abortion Measures       

In July 2020, Right to Life of East Texas Director Mark Lee Dickson travelled to Naples, Florida, due to Naples residents’ strong desire to enact a sanctuary ordinance in this affluent southwest Florida city of over 22,000.[xxxiv]  At the time, Dickson told a local news outlet that he anticipated submitting a proposed ordinance to the city council within weeks. He expected a council vote on the measure as soon as August or September, 2020.[xxxv]  However, the Naples City Council was less than enthusiastic about entertaining it.  It was not until March 18, 2021, that local pro-life advocates, working in conjunction with Dickson, formally proposed the ordinance at a city council meeting because no council member had the courage to sponsor it.[xxxvi]  After a brief discussion, the council decided not to place the ordinance on a future agenda.[xxxvii]  There were three council members in favor of doing so, and four opposed.[xxxviii]  During the ensuing months, pro-life advocates have continued to press their case for an ordinance by demonstrating at Naples City Hall and by continuing to speak out at council meetings.[xxxix]  It appears that, unless one council member changes his or her mind, the ordinance will not be considered until at least after the 2022 municipal elections.     


More than one-hundred miles to the north of Naples, along the Interstate-75 corridor, pro-life advocates have also been busy pushing for a sanctuary ordinance since June 2021.  However, unlike in Naples, they have an elected official who is championing the measure.  Manatee County Commissioner James Satcher announced at a commission meeting in early June that he would like to see the county pass an enforceable ordinance protecting unborn children.[xl]   Several commissioners expressed support for the idea.[xli]  Consequently, the county commission authorized Satcher to develop a proposed ordinance with the help of the county attorney’s office and county administrator.[xlii]  However, as will be discussed further infra, a proposed ordinance has failed to materialize.  


To date, no county in Texas – or anywhere else – has passed a sanctuary ordinance.  But there have been other recent efforts in Florida to pass pro-life measures at the county level.  In February 2020, a commissioner in Santa Rosa County (in the western panhandle) proposed a resolution to make the county a “pro-life sanctuary.”[xliii]  It seemed the resolution would pass easily since the commission was composed of five "pro-life" Republicans, with only one opposed from the outset.[xliv]  At the last minute, however, two commissioners suddenly withdrew their support.[xlv]  The commissioners then voted unanimously to place the resolution on the November 2020 general election ballot so that voters could decide it directly.[xlvi]  As placed on the ballot, the resolution (which was always symbolic – and not an enforceable county ordinance) read in part as follows:

The Board of County Commissioners of Santa Rosa County, Florida, desires to express its deep concern that all human life, beginning from life inside the womb, through every stage of development, up and until a natural death, in Santa Rosa County should be afforded protection by their government, including local government, from acts of cruelty, and should be treated humanely and with dignity.[xlvii]



Santa Rosa County voters overwhelmingly passed the resolution, 57% to 43%.[xlviii]   


Following Santa Rosa County’s successful referendum, pro-life advocates in Indian River County, on the east coast of Florida, lobbied their county commission to enact an ordinance restricting abortions after twenty-weeks gestation (the point at which unborn babies are capable of feeling pain) as well as prohibiting all abortions that are performed due to a diagnosis of a genetic disability, such as Down syndrome.[xlix]  The leader of the local pro-life effort told the media in November 2020 that the proposed ordinance was very different from a sanctuary one in that it would not ban abortion facilities from operating within Indian River County.[l]  In June 2021, the chair of the county commission publicly stated “the commissioners don’t have the ability to approve” such an ordinance. Therefore, the commissioners would not be taking up the proposal.[li]


III.   The Problem of State Preemption and Conflict of Laws in Florida

There are no abortion facilities within the city limits of Naples, nor do any such facilities currently operate within Manatee, Santa Rosa, and Indian River counties.[lii]  But these four seemingly disparate local jurisdictions also have something else in common.  Pro-life advocates in each jurisdiction have encountered resistance to their efforts because elected officials and pro-abortion opponents argue that Florida law prohibits municipalities and counties from prohibiting/regulating abortion within their borders.  As explained in a recent legislative analysis of a 2021 Florida bill unrelated to abortion:


The Florida Constitution grants county and municipal governments broad home rule authority.  Specifically, non-charter county governments may exercise those powers of self-government that are provided by general or special law.  Those counties operating under a county charter have all powers of self-government not inconsistent with general law or special law approved by vote of the electors.  Likewise, municipalities have those governmental, corporate, and proprietary powers enabling them to conduct municipal government, perform their functions and provide services, and exercise any power for municipal purposes, except as otherwise provided by law.  In contrast, special districts have only those powers expressly authorized by general or special law.  County and municipal governments have broad authority to legislate on any matter that is not inconsistent with federal or state law.


A local government enactment may be inconsistent with state law if 1) the Legislature has preempted a particular area or 2) the local enactment conflicts with a state statute.  Where state preemption applies, it precludes a local government from exercising authority in that particular area.[liii]               



There are two types of state preemption: expressed and implied.[liv]  If the Florida Legislature has preempted the regulation of abortion facilities, then it would appear that the sanctuary ordinances – and any other municipal or county ordinance relating to the regulation of abortion – would be null and void.  Nothing in Florida law explicitly states that the legislature has expressed its intention to preempt local governments from addressing abortion.[lv]  However, the question then becomes whether the legislature’s statutory abortion scheme evinces implied state preemption.


Opponents of the sanctuary ordinances point to a thirty-six-year-old Florida Attorney General advisory legal opinion supporting their contention that Florida's state laws imply preemption.[lvi]  In 1985, the city of Ocala asked the Florida Attorney General for his opinion on whether it had the right to ban abortion facilities within its city limits.[lvii]  In a legal opinion, dated September 9, 1985, the Attorney General advised Ocala that it could not ban abortion facilities:

[I]f the state has preempted the regulation of abortion clinics, units of local government are precluded from adopting regulatory legislation on this subject matter.


The state's statutory scheme for regulating abortion clinics is contained in Ch. 390, F.S.




While provisions of Ch. 390, F.S., are silent with respect to the exclusion of local regulation on the subject, a review of the statutes set forth above reveals a comprehensive legislative scheme which, in their operation and effect, seek to control and regulate the operation of abortion clinics in the State of Florida…It is clear that local government cannot prohibit what the state permits, nor can local government permit what the state prohibits.  The provisions of the state statutes dealing with the regulation of abortion clinics, in totality, appear to evince, in my opinion, a legislative intent to preempt the subject of regulation and licensing of abortion clinics in the State of Florida, and thus, prohibit additional regulation by local governments in this area.




In conclusion, unless and until judicially determined otherwise, I am of the opinion that the state has preempted the field of regulating and licensing abortion clinics. Therefore, municipalities are not authorized to adopt an ordinance regulating (other than reasonable zoning ordinances) or banning such clinics.[lviii]  


In Manatee County, which is currently the only local jurisdiction within Florida where an elected official has expressed his intent to introduce a sanctuary ordinance, the main stumbling block to enacting the ordinance has been the 1985 Attorney General opinion discussed supra.[lix]  In its latest move, the Manatee County Commission has formally asked current Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody for her opinion on whether the 1985 opinion is still a valid interpretation of Florida’s statutory abortion scheme.[lx] 


Even if Moody were to overrule her predecessor's thirty-six-year-old advisory legal opinion, another question must be addressed, which is whether a local sanctuary ordinance would conflict with Florida state law.  Florida does not prohibit abortions in the first and second trimesters,[lxi] and therefore, a municipal or county ordinance outlawing all abortions (with the limited exceptions discussed supra) would appear to conflict with Florida's current state laws.  If there is a conflict, then Florida courts would most likely find that state law would control, and the local sanctuary ordinances could be deemed null and void in their entirety (including the private enforcement mechanisms).  


IV.   Amending Florida State Law Will Guarantee the Legal Validity  of Local Sanctuary Ordinances 

There is a solution to the preemption/conflict of laws problem; however, that does not rely on Attorney General Moody issuing a favorable advisory opinion or on the state courts protecting the sanctuary ordinances.  This way forward involves amending existing Florida state law.  On September 22, 2021, Florida state Rep. Webster Barnaby (R–Deltona) filed House Bill 167, which is known as the 2022 “Florida Heartbeat Act.”[lxii]  This bill is modeled after the 2021 “Texas Heartbeat Act,” which was successfully enacted into law in May 2021, and went into effect on September 1st.[lxiii]  Like the Texas law, the Florida Heartbeat Act seeks to prohibit abortions after an unborn child’s heartbeat is detectable (around six weeks gestation).[lxiv]  And similar to the Texas law, Florida's proposed legislation intends to enforce the statewide prohibition by utilizing the same private enforcement mechanisms found in the sanctuary ordinances.[lxv] 


In terms of securing the ability of Florida municipalities and counties to enact their own ordinances outlawing abortions, the Florida Heartbeat Act contains this key provision:


(8)   This section may not be construed to:




(d)   Restrict a political subdivision from regulating or prohibiting abortion in a manner that is at least as stringent as general law.[lxvi]



The above stipulation is nearly identical to one found in the Texas Heartbeat Act.[lxvii]  Although the Texas sanctuary ordinances did not appear to face a challenge based on state preemption, Texas legislators were wise to amend their state law, making clear that the State of Texas expressly permits its cities and counties to issue their own ordinances outlawing abortions.  Florida state legislators should do the same to guarantee the legal validity of passing sanctuary ordinances in the Sunshine State. 



Over the last two years, the Sanctuary Cities for the Unborn movement has been quite successful, especially in Texas, where it originated.  Florida pro-life advocates have sought to replicate its success in the Sunshine State, beginning in the city of Naples and in Manatee County.  But their efforts have been stymied because of a thirty-six-year-old Florida Attorney General opinion, which advises that Florida’s state laws imply that the state has preempted the field of abortion regulation and, therefore, Florida municipalities and counties cannot prohibit abortion within their borders in an effort to protect unborn children.  The solution to this problem of preemption, as well as a seeming conflict between any such local sanctuary ordinances and current Florida state law, is straightforward.  Florida state law should be amended to empower local units of government to ban abortions within their jurisdictions.  Thankfully, the 2022 Florida Heartbeat Act contains such a provision.  If pro-life advocates want to see local sanctuary ordinances passed in the Sunshine State, they should concentrate on passing the Florida Heartbeat Act.                   



[i] See

[ii] Such was the case when Planned Parenthood opened a new abortion facility in the conservative Texas city of Lubbock during the summer of 2020.  See “Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas Opens Lubbock Health Center.”  Planned Parenthood Press Release.  July 30, 2020.  Available at:   

[iii] Mitchell, Jonathan F. “The Writ-of-Erasure Fallacy.”  104 Va. L. Rev. 933 (April 6, 2018).  Available at:  

[iv] Bilger, Micaiah. “Lubbock, Texas Banned Abortions in May, Since Then No Babies Have Been Killed.”  October 8, 2021.  Available at:      

[v] Mitchell, supra, at 933.

[vi] Id.

[vii] Id. at 941 (emphasis original).

[viii] Id. at 1000-1001 (internal footnote omitted). 

[ix] Id. at 1001 (internal footnote omitted).

[x] Id. at 1002 (internal footnote omitted).

[xi] Id. at 1001, footnote 270 (internal citations omitted).

[xii] Wax-Thibodeaux, Emily.  “Mark Lee Dickson paved the way for the Texas abortion ban, one small town at a time.”  The Washington Post.  September 16, 2021. Available at:

[xiii] Id.

[xiv] Id.

[xv] Richardson, Robin Y.  “Waskom makes amendments to abortion ban ordinance.”  The Marshall News Messenger.  March 11, 2020.  Available at:

[xvi] Id.

[xvii] Id.

[xviii] Id.


[xx] Id. at 2.

[xxi] Id. at 3.

[xxii] Id.

[xxiii] Id. at 4.

[xxiv] Texas Local Government Code § 54.001(b)(1).

[xxv] Waskom Ordinance, supra, at 4.

[xxvi] Id. at 3-4.

[xxvii] Id. at 4-5.

[xxviii] Id. at 5.

[xxix] Id.

[xxx] See Parker, Mary.  “The Economic Impact of Adopting Sanctuary City for the Unborn Ordinances.”  Sebastian’s Point – Society of St. Sebastian.  September 30, 2021.  Available at:  

[xxxi] Id.

[xxxii] Id.  See also, Mitchell, supra, at 1001-1002. 

[xxxiii] See Parker, supra.

[xxxiv] “Texas pastor brings movement to ban abortion to Naples.”  Wink News.  July 23, 2020.  Available at:; See also, 

[xxxv] See again, Wink News. July 23, 2020, supra

[xxxvi] “Pro-life group rallies for Naples to become a ‘sanctuary city for the unborn.’”  Wink News.  April 21, 2021.  Available at:

[xxxvii] Rodriguez Ortiz, Omar.  “Will Naples outlaw abortions?  Not anytime soon, some councilmen say.”  Naples Daily News.  June 18, 2021.  Available at:

[xxxviii] Id.

[xxxix] Elias, Dave.  “Abortion ban supporters gather at Naples City Council meeting.”   NBC2 (WBBH-TV).  August 18, 2021.  Available at: 

[xl] “Mendoza, Jesse.  “Manatee County to explore local abortion regulations similar to Texas Heartbeat Act.”  Sarasota Herald-Tribune.  June 9, 2021.  Available at:   

[xli] Id.

[xlii] Id.

[xliii] Blanks, Annie.  “Florida’s Santa Rosa County voters will decide on ‘pro-life sanctuary’ resolution in November.”  Pensacola News Journal.  February 13, 2020.  Available at:

[xliv] Id.

[xlv] Id.

[xlvi] Id.

[xlvii] Blanks, Annie.  “Santa Rosa voters set to decide on ‘Sanctuary for Life’ referendum Nov. 3.” Pensacola News Journal. October 11, 2020.  Available at: 

[xlviii] Blanks, Annie.  “Election 2020: Santa Rosa County becomes first ‘sanctuary for life’ county in Florida.”  Pensacola News Journal.  November 3, 2020.  Available at:

[xlix] Wixon, Colleen.  “Pro-life group wants tighter regulations on abortion centers, ban on late-term abortions.”  November 13, 2020.  Available at:

[l] Id.

[li] Gilmore, Chris.  “Indian River County commissioners refuse vote on tighter abortion regulations.”  June 15, 2021.  Available at:

[lii] See again, Elias, supra; Wixon, supra.  See also, Blanks, Annie.  “Santa Rosa poised to be Florida’s first ‘pro-life sanctuary.’”  February 10, 2020.  Available at: See also, Callihan, Ryan.  “There are no abortion clinics in Manatee County.  Leaders begin seeking local ban anyway.”  Bradenton Herald.  June 12, 2021.  Available at: 

[liii] Florida House of Representatives Staff Final Bill Analysis.  CS/CS/HB 919: Preemption Over Restriction of Utility Services.  June 1, 2021.  (emphasis added).  Available at:

[liv] Wolf, James R. and Sarah Harley Bolinder.  “The Effectiveness of Home Rule: A Preemptions and Conflict Analysis.”  83 Fla. B.J. 92 (June 2009).  Available at:  

[lv] See F.S. §§ 390.011 to 390.025.

[lvi] Florida AGO 85-73.  Re: MUNICIPALITIES – Regulation of abortion clinics unauthorized.  September 9, 1985.  Available at:   

[lvii] Id.

[lviii] Id.

[lix] Callihan, Ryan.  “Activists stage protest as Manatee County aims to become ‘Safe Haven’ from abortion.”  Bradenton Herald.  September 14, 2021.  Available at: 

[lx] Mendoza, Jesse and Samantha Gholar Weires.  “Manatee commissioners vote to seek formal legal advisement for abortion ordinance.”  Sarasota Herald-Tribune.  September 14, 2021.  Available at:

[lxi] See again, F.S. §§ 390.011 to 390.025.

[lxii] Florida House Bill 167 (2022).  Available at:

[lxiii] See Enrolled Texas Senate Bill 8 (2021).  Available at:

[lxiv] See again, Florida House Bill 167 (2022) and Enrolled Texas Senate Bill 8 (2021).

[lxv] Cf. Enrolled Texas Senate Bill 8 (2021), Sec. 171.207-08 and Florida House Bill 167 (2022), lines 412-419; 720-841.

[lxvi] Florida House Bill 167 (2022), lines 426 and 436-438.

[lxvii] Enrolled Texas Senate Bill 8 (2021), Sec. 171.206(b)(3).

Sanctuary City | Florida | Unborn

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