A lawsuit filed to keep state family planning money out of the hands of Planned Parenthood was thought to be over, but a circuit judge in Jefferson City has revived the case. Cole County Circuit Judge Byron Kinder won’t accept Attorney General Jay Nixon’s dismissal of the suit, which came after the State Supreme Court ruled he couldn’t represent both sides even though he hired outside counselto represent the Legislature. Instead, Kinder has appointed University of Missouri law professor James Devine as a special master to advise him on the case. Devine says he can’t recall any case quite like this one. Nixon hired the outside counsel at the request of pro-life lawmakerswho didn’t trust him to fight vigorously to keep money from Planned Parenthood. Controversy swirls around this issue, yet Devine says it won’t affect his consideration. As for the Attorney General, Nixon issued only a short statementasserting his authority to dismiss the case and stating his office will make that point to the special master.
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