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Obama HHS may sue Texas for defunding Planned Parenthood

HHS Department

The Obama Administration has warned Texas it may sue the state in order to restore Planned Parenthood’s Medicaid funding.

Earlier this month, state health Inspector General Stuart Bowen wrote to Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast that Texas was removing the abortion giant’s affiliate from the state Medicaid program because it had determined “you and your Planned Parenthood affiliates are no longer capable of performing medical services in a professionally competent, safe, legal and ethical manner.”

In addition to a series of undercover videos showing Planned Parenthood officials discussing apparent criminal violations pertaining to the acquisition and sale of organs from aborted babies, the letter went on to explain the state had “reliable information indicating a pattern of illegal billing practices by Planned Parenthood affiliates, including you, across the State.”

Now, a spokesman from the federal Health and Human Services Department is claiming that Texas’s decision is a violation of “longstanding Medicaid law,” which “prohibits states from restricting individuals with Medicaid coverage from receiving their care from any qualified provider.” He further criticized the state for putting “at risk” “critical preventive services” that “millions of women benefit from” thanks to Planned Parenthood.

However, Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Casey Mattox argues the Obama HHS Department’s interpretation of the law is politically motivated “privilege” exclusively for Planned Parenthood: “in the last two decades or so, about 9,000 providers [were] excluded from Medicaid. In most of those cases, they’re completely uncontroversial […] When it’s Planned Parenthood, however, you have the Centers for Medicaid Services reinterpret the Medicaid statute to deny states the opportunity to exclude those providers.”

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