Pueblo, CO, City Council Bans Pro-Life Witnesses From Hearing on Abortion Law for "Biased Opinions," Claiming They Would Cause a "Circus"


Jordan Sekulow

December 7, 2022

3 min read

Pro Life



The Pueblo, Colorado, City Council has revoked the invitation for pro-life witnesses to speak at tonight’s City Council meeting for what one Councilwoman calls “biased opinions” that would cause a “circus in her chambers.”

This is blatant and egregious viewpoint discrimination. The ACLJ has dispatched a team of lawyers and is preparing to deliver a legal demand letter and present affidavits at tonight’s City Council meeting.

Notorious partial-birth abortionist LeRoy Carhart announced earlier this year that he would expand his abortion business (which boasts late-term abortions) across state lines from Nebraska to Pueblo, CO. Carhart is infamous for attempting – and failing – to overturn the federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban at the Supreme Court in Gonzales v. Carhart, a case the ACLJ was actively involved in defeating his efforts.

Recently, an ordinance was proposed – and passed a first reading – regulating and limiting abortion procedures, which would effectively limit Carhart in setting up and running his gruesome business.

A hearing of the City Council was scheduled for tonight and both pro-life and pro-abortion speakers were invited and scheduled to speak. Then, yesterday evening, Councilwomen Sarah Martinez and Heather Graham canceled the pro-life speakers, but specifically still allowed the pro-abortion witnesses’ hour-long presentation to remain on the schedule.

We are representing both an invited speaker, Mark Lee Dickson (a pastor and pro-life expert), and the individuals who organized the other pro-life speakers in this matter.

Councilwoman Regina Maestri told us that Councilwoman Sarah Martinez told her that the pro-life speakers were being banned because the pro-life “speakers would give biased opinions and she didn’t need a circus in her chambers.”

This blatant and egregious unconstitutional viewpoint discrimination flies in the face of the First Amendment and will not stand. One of our senior lawyers has just flown in to Pueblo this afternoon, and will be personally delivering a legal demand letter to the entire City Council, putting them on notice of their violation of the Constitution, demanding that they let the pro-life witnesses’ speak, and advising that “the ACLJ is preparing legal action to rectify the Council’s unconstitutional actions.”

We will keep you updated as this situation rapidly develops.

12.08.2022 UPDATE: Last night, a senior attorney from the ACLJ attended the City Council meeting and argued that the council had engaged in unconstitutional viewpoint discrimination by blocking our clients’ pro-life political speech, which is unquestionably held to be “the core of what the First Amendment is designed to protect” by the Supreme Court. Our attorney referenced the legal analysis provided in our demand letter to point out that even city councils must be cautious of participating in “viewpoint discrimination.” Mesa v. White.

After a back and forth question and answer with the ACLJ attorney, the City Council conceded that prohibiting our clients from speaking created a constitutional issue. The City Council agreed to postpone both sides of the legal presentation on the ordinance until Monday, December 12th, where our clients will be able to present alongside the pro-abortion speakers. This is a victory for our clients and your rights under the Constitution. But we remain vigilant. We will be at the hearing on Monday to ensure the City Council keeps their word and complies with the law, and that our clients’ rights are protected.