Judges’ rulings do not blossom after carefully evaluating competing legal briefs; most judges know at the outset where they want to end up and then carefully select the legal stepping stones to get there.
This happened in the Aug 1st ruling in which Kansas district Judge Thomas Marten dismissed the state’s constitutional budget authority and used “injunctive relief” to send one third million dollars in family planning tax money to Planned Parenthood of Kansas Mid-Missouri.
Kansas’ new law prioritizing family planning contracts is– on the legal merits– the strongest of state battles with Planned Parenthood funding.
Since Planned Parenthood attorneys can’t win that argument, they necessarily spun their lawsuit as a free speech issue in which a ‘newly-elected radical-right wing government wages a war on women.’
Judge Marten warmed to that theme and issued a temporary injunction against a budget proviso — with language that never mentions abortion or Planned Parenthood– because Marten determined that its true “purpose was to punish Planned Parenthood for its advocacy of abortion rights.”