Republicans hire outside attorneys in abortion lawsuit

March 22, 2019 GMT

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Republican legislators have hired their own attorneys to represent them in a federal lawsuit challenging Wisconsin abortion restrictions.

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos released a contract Friday the Legislature reached with East Coast law firm Consovoy McCarthy Park PLLC on March 14. The firm will represent lawmakers for $500 an hour for all attorneys involved.

The GOP hasn’t asked to join the case yet. If U.S. District Judge William Conley allows legislators to join, the firm’s fees will be capped at $500,000. If Conley refuses, fees will be capped at $100,000.

Planned Parenthood sued in January seeking to repeal requirements that only doctors perform abortions, women seeking abortion-inducing drugs see the same doctor twice and doctors be present when dispensing the drugs.

Democratic Attorney General Josh Kaul is defending the restrictions but Republicans say he supports abortion.