Oh cool, Texas wants to cut off Planned Parenthood’s Medicaid funding again
You can tell anyone who suggests “not worrying” about abortion access, birth control, and women’s healthcare to go screw themselves now that Texas is formally cutting Planned Parenthood from Medicaid funding. On Tuesday, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission submitted a final notice that ends the health clinic’s enrollment in the state funded healthcare system. It will be effective in 3o days if Planned Parenthood doesn’t request a hearing with the Texas Health and Human Services Commission within the next two weeks. Texas apparently wants to have a “talk” with the organization.
Instead, Planned Parenthood (never an organization to take shit quietly) said it plans to file an injunction in federal court to go over the state’s head, while also still operating and providing the healthcare it always does. But low-income Texas women who depend on the clinics might be at a total loss if Texas gets its way in a month.
The state is cutting $3.1 million in funding for Planned Parenthood’s 34 health clinics, affecting about 11,000 women. “Planned Parenthood continues to serve Medicaid patients and will seek a preliminary injunction in an ongoing lawsuit filed in November 2015, following the state’s original threats to take action against Planned Parenthood’s patients,” Yvonne Gutierrez, executive director of Planned Parenthood Texas Votes (the organization’s political arm), told The Texas Tribune.
That ongoing lawsuit is from back in 2015, when Texas tried to do the exact same thing. The state delivered a notice saying the health clinic had 30 days to request an “informal resolution meeting” with the health commission or risk being cut from Medicaid. Planned Parenthood sued and nothing ever came of it. Literally, the suit has been sitting on someone’s desk and Planned Parenthood has carried on providing critical services to women.
So, here they are again.
All the financial cuts are because Texas officials believe Planned Parenthood chops up little babies and sells them from a taco truck in a back lot in Dallas. Not really, obviously, but they do think Planned Parenthood is violating federal law by selling fetal tissue for research. All because of those ridiculously edited, undercover videos. Even though those videos have sparked investigations into the group, which found that it doesn’t do that.
The state wrote in its notice, “Your misconduct is directly related to whether you are qualified to provide medical services in a professionally competent, safe, legal and ethical manner. Your actions violate generally accepted medical standards, as reflected in state and federal law, and are Medicaid program violations that justify termination.”
Basically, Texas is just making shit up and robbing 11,000 women in the state of affordable healthcare. It’s as if lawmakers operate in an alternate universe. Trying to pass sneaky TRAP laws is one thing, but completely cutting Planned Parenthood off based on videos and statements already proven to be steeped in falsehood? That’s a new low. Go home Texas, you’re drunk.