Court Rules: Actually, States Can Defund Planned Parenthood

Katie Pavlich

8/22/2012 11:22:00 AM - Katie Pavlich

Late yesterday a federal judge lifted an injunction against a Texas based law that bans Planned Parenthood funding. Life News has more:

The court ruled Texas can cut off funding for Planned Parenthood within its women’s health services program because Planned Parenthood is an abortion business.

Recently, a panel of the the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court overturned an appeals judge’s decision allowing Texas to ban the nation’s biggest abortion business from the state’s Women’s Health Program. The panel ruled the law Texas approved last year to prohibit abortion facilities from taking part in the program to protect taxpayers from funding abortion facilities is unconstitutional.

This ruling sets up a battle between the feds and the states. This panel of judges has essentially ruled that states have a right to determine whether abortion providers receive funding, something President Obama has made clear he disagrees with. Earlier this year, President Obama punished all Texas women on behalf of Planned Parenthood.

Before the lawsuit, the Obama Administration cut off the Women’s Health Care Program (WHP) for over 100,000 Texas women at over 2,400 providers for the sake of Planned Parenthood, which provides only limited health service at 44 facilities in Texas. In response, Governor Rick Perry and state lawmakers found their own funding for it.

The Medicaid Women’s Health Program provides preventive health care to over 100,000 low-income women in Texas every year. There are over 2,400 qualified providers of the Medicaid WHP in Texas; only 44 Planned Parenthood facilities currently receive the funds.

In December, the Obama Administration refused to renew funding for Texas’ Women’s Health Program (WHP) because of new state rules that disqualify abortion business affiliates from participation in the program. The WHP encompasses Medicaid family planning services for low income women. The program started through authorizing legislation in 2005 and was renewed in the recent 82nd legislative session with new pro-life rules.

President of the pro-life Susan B. Anthony, Marjorie Dannenfelser, list has issued a statement in response to the ruling:

“So far, President Obama has been able to rely only upon his executive office and the courts in order to force taxpayer funding for Planned Parenthood against the will of state legislators. Ignoring grassroots is a losing game. In this time of financial crisis, states like Texas should have the right to prioritize their health care funding, placing whole women's health care, primary care, first. The Fifth Circuit court and, we believe, others will reveal this further. Abortion-centered organizations like Planned Parenthood do not deserve taxpayer dollars.”