CMP Asks Appeals Court to Remove Judge with Planned Parenthood Ties From Undercover Videos Cases

The Center for Medical Progress (CMP) filed a petition for a writ of mandamus today at the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, seeking the disqualification of San Francisco federal Judge William Orrick III from the lawsuits against CMP by Planned Parenthood and the National Abortion Federation, on account of Judge Orrick’s close ties to Planned Parenthood.

Judge Orrick is responsible for the prior-restraint gag order, currently being appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, that censors CMP’s remaining undercover footage of Planned Parenthood at the National Abortion Federation’s annual meetings. CMP’s undercover citizen journalism reporting led to the recent news that the U.S. Department of Justice is investigating Planned Parenthood, and an admission of guilt in a $7.8 million settlement by two of Planned Parenthood’s business partners for selling fetal body parts against the law.

The facts about Judge Orrick’s extrajudicial support of Planned Parenthood include:

1) While in a leadership role at a San Francisco family resource center, Judge Orrick helped open, run, and fund a Planned Parenthood clinic in partnership with the family resource center. That clinic is part of Planned Parenthood Northern California, which has NAF membership and is now suing CMP in Judge Orrick’s courtroom.

2) Judge Orrick and his wife together donated significant financial resources to the partnership between the family resource center and Planned Parenthood, which the Planned Parenthood affiliate CEO said helped maintain and expand their operations.

3) Mrs. Orrick uses her husband’s image on Facebook to support Planned Parenthood in posts attacking CMP’s videos as “domestic terrorism” and weigh in on issues disputed in the lawsuits.

4) Judge Orrick’s ongoing public relationship and duties toward the family resource center in San Francisco housing Planned Parenthood Northern California’s clinic, and the center’s continuing partnership with Planned Parenthood.