Judge Temporarily Blocks Texas From Cutting Planned Parenthood From Medicaid Program

Photo Credit: All Nite Images

AUSTIN, Texas — A federal judge appointed to the bench by then-President George H.W. Bush has issued a temporary injunction halting the state of Texas from cutting the abortion and contraceptive giant Planned Parenthood from the state’s Medicaid program while its case moves forward in court.

U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks placed a hold on the move until Feb. 21, but is expected to issue a ruling before that time. He heard three days of testimony this week, which mostly centered around undercover videos released in 2015 by the Center for Medical Progress.

As previously reported, a video released in August 2015 by the Center for Medical Progress captured Melissa Farrell, director of research for Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast, discussing with undercover investigators the “diversification of the revenue stream” over dinner, along with a visit to the organization’s pathology lab, where workers sorted through the remains of aborted babies.

“If we alter our process and we are able to obtain intact fetal cadavers, then we can make it part of the budget, that any dissections are this, and splitting the specimens into different shipments is this,” she explained. “I mean, it’s all just a matter of line items.”

Jami Snyder, associate commissioner for Medicaid, told the court during the hearing that the state has plenty of health care providers that women can utilize other than Planned Parenthood.

“What we know to be true is that a variety of providers in our network offer family planning services,” she said, noting that there are other locations women can obtain pregnancy tests or contraceptives.

Planned Parenthood had asserted in its request for an injunction that some women will lack “few or no adequate alternative providers” if the Medicaid funding is cut. There are 34 Planned Parenthood locations in the state.

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“If the provider Plaintiffs are forced to stop providing care in the Medicaid program, this situation will worsen. Women and men who are unable to obtain family planning care, or encounter delays in obtaining it, can face devastating consequences, including undetected cancers and diseases,” attorneys for the organization wrote. “Delays in obtaining contraception will result in intended pregnancies, many of which may end in abortion.”

During the hearing on Thursday, Planned Parenthood brought in John Robertson of the University of Texas School of Law at Austin to testify in defense of the organization’s practices of providing the body parts of aborted babies to research organizations.

“Minor adjustments in how a physician doing the abortion will do the procedure would not rise to the level of an ethical concern unless they threaten the health or welfare of the woman involved,” he contended.

But the state pointed to Robertson’s 2011 writings, which said in part that “a woman could abort for reasons or factors revealed in prenatal tests that some persons would find trivial or frivolous, such as hair or eye color, athletic or musical prowess…”

According to the Texas Tribune, Sparks asked both sides to provide reports to him regarding the investigative videos while he considers the matter further. Planned Parenthood has denied any wrongdoing, but the state is confident that its concerns are valid.

As previously reported, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) issued a final notice on Dec. 20 that Planned Parenthood would be defunded in 30 days. The organization had heretofore received $3.1 million in Medicaid reimbursement annually.

The Commission initially sent a letter to Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast in October 2015, providing the entity with a notice of termination.

“[T]here is reliable information indicating a pattern of illegal billing practices by Planned Parenthood affiliates, including you, across the state,” the letter read. “Our prima facie case of fraud is supported by related cases involving fraudulent practices identified by whistleblowers from inside the Texas Planned Parenthood network.”

It pointed to two federal lawsuits that had been settled for millions after whistleblowers came forward about false Medicaid claims that had been filed.

Without specifically mentioning the Center for Medical Progress, the Commission also referenced undercover video footage showing representatives from a Texas Planned Parenthood facility discussing its willingness to alter abortion procedures to remove deceased children whole.

“The videos indicate that you follow a policy of agreeing to procure fetal tissue even if it means altering the timing or method of an abortion. These practices violate accepted medical standards, as reflected in federal law, and are Medicaid program violations that justify termination,” it said.

Planned Parenthood sued the Texas HHSC in November 2015 in an effort to retain its participation in the Medicaid program, asserting that the termination was illegal, but the Commission did not yet cancel the contract as originally planned. Last month, the state moved forward, resulting in Planned Parenthood again filing for an injunction.


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  • Grace Kim Kwon

    American states should never fund Nazi facilities.

  • Amos Moses

    March Defends Women’s Right To Choose Conformity With Only One Political Viewpoint
    January 21, 201

    • RealityBites

      Women are no longer mere incubators but human beings with bodily autonomy January 22 2017. Males have been trying to get control back for the last 44 years and they’re getting desperate

      • Amos Moses

        yeah ….. nope ……… hate to be the bearer of bad news ……. killing your children is not living ……….

        • RealityBites

          Freedom is really not your thing huh?

          • Amos Moses

            there is no freedom to kill children ………. or anyone ….. and it is a perversion of language to say it is ……….. huh ……….

          • RealityBites

            NO its not, there is freedom to make the RIGHT choice for you at the moment, but like the rest of the pro birth crowd, you want to own a woman

          • Amos Moses

            there is no choice to take anothers life to “do what i want to do” ………. killing children of any size, location, environment, or dependence is murder ……. and whether a woman is “owned” or not does not alter that basic truth …… murder is murder …………..

          • RealityBites

            Murder is illegal, abortion is legal. Therefore abortion cannot be murder under the law. Simple logic that escapes even you

          • Amos Moses

            abortion is murder if it is legal or not ……. slavery is slavery ….. whether a court says it is legal or not ……. and they did for many years …….. therefore your point is moot ……….

          • RealityBites

            simple logic flies right over your head I see

          • Amos Moses

            is slavery ok ……….

          • RealityBites

            apples to jackhammers comparison

          • Amos Moses

            nope …… your claim is a court said it was not murder, was not wrong …… but those same courts ruled slavery was ok ….. so when were they wrong …. or right ….. or why are they now right …..

          • RealityBites

            Again, apples to jackhammers

          • Amos Moses

            nope ……. it is your confused thinking and “logic” ….. really ILLlogic that is on display here …….. and you have not answered the question ….. the courts once said SLAVERY was ok …. is it or is it not ….. and WHY …. based on what exactly …………

          • RealityBites

            Stop making apples to jackhammers comparisons

          • Amos Moses

            you are the one making the claim of “freedom” from other HUMAN BEINGS …….. and yet you rely on their judgement over you to tell you what that is …….. you seem confused ……..

          • RealityBites

            Lemme guess you skipped American government class?

          • Amos Moses

            again ……

            “Abortion is legal, murder is ILLEGAL per the law.”
            so the LAW tells you what your “freedom” is …. but HUMAN BEINGS make the law ….. so AGAIN ….. on what BASIS …. you said ……. “we celebrate our freedom to no longer be ruled by other human beings” ……… BUT NOW you say “Abortion is legal, murder is ILLEGAL per the law” ………. and you are being ruled by HUMAN BEINGS and THE LAW ………..
            “Simple logic does not compute with you I see.” ………. i see NO LOGIC in any of your statements …………. get back to me when you figure it out ……..

          • RealityBites

            I wish you understood simple logic

          • Amos Moses

            i wish you had some ……….

          • RealityBites

            I have more than you do, you make that obvious

          • Amos Moses

            okay snowflake ……..

          • RealityBites

            Glad you recognize beauty, since snowflakes are indeed beautiful. Name calling however only shows you’re already behind

          • Amos Moses

            sure snowflake ….. do not know whether to facepalm or laugh …… guess i will do both …… “Simple logic that escapes even you” …. hint …. calling people stupid ….. means you lost long ago ……..

          • RealityBites

            You’re behind for sure but at least you understand that.

          • Amos Moses

            you are not even in the race ……. FAIL ……..

          • RealityBites

            You’re right, you aren’t in the race. You failed MISERABLY

          • ShemSilber

            Rather, American government skipped the Reality 101 class, wherein they could have learned that they are answerable to Almighty Yahuwah and will come up for judgment concerning the prenatal murder of millions of babies, whether they like it or not, and whether they believe it or not. As your moniker says, reality BITES, and it clamps down on the rear quarters and rips, and that is the Word of Yahuwah to us in these Dark Ages, which He will soon bring to an end with the return of His Son, the Master Yahushua, to dispense peace on earth from His throne in Jerusalem, ISRAEL, omein.

          • RealityBites

            Except we are not a theocracy despite your desire that we become one

          • ShemSilber

            Regardless of what we like or believe, Yahuwah rules. The Master Yahushua (Lord Jesus) is on His throne, and both we and our government officials ARE answerable to Him. It is not “THEocracy,” it always has been and always will be Yahu-ocracy, whether we agree to it or not, because He made us and He IS in control. All we are left with is a choice to follow His lead or to fight against it, at our peril, omein.

            Just because He allows us to err from His instructions means only that He is for now letting us make our own mistakes and suffer for them, such as by committing millions of prenatal murders. In the Judgment, there those children will be, both evidence and witnesses for the prosecution of their murderers. They will have life, but their murderers will go to die in Gei-Hinnom, the lake of fire that was made for the devil and his fellow-demons.

            Blessed are all those who repent of their murders and receive His forgiveness, for they will have everlasting life, in the Name of the Master Yahushua, omein.

          • RealityBites

            The Constitution is the Supreme law of this land, hate to break reality to ya. We have true freedom where people can practice whichever religion they choose.

          • ShemSilber

            It doesn’t matter what religion they choose, Yahuwah is still ruler over them all, whether they are Islamic, Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, Jainist, or what, Yahuwah still is in charge over it all and in control.

            In relatively short order–to soon for scoffers, and never too soon for believers–the Master Yahushua is coming, per Revelation 11:15, to make the kingdoms of this world the Kingdom of Yahuwah and of His Messiah, and all the phony religions and other evils will come to their end, because their master, Azazel, the devil, alias Allah the false god of Islam, will be tossed into Gei-Hinnom, the lake of fire that was made for him and his fellow-demons (Matthew 25:41). Then we will have peace on earth, and then the Constitution of these United States of America and all other governmental systems will be supplanted by the Torah, per Isaiah 2:1-4 and Micah 4:1-4, and the Master Yahushua will administer peace from Jerusalem, ISRAEL, just as the prophets have told us He will. That’s when judgment will come on all these phony governments who thought they were above Torah, and they will dissolve away into nothing.

            HalleluYAH and omein, in the Name of the Master Yahushua!

          • RealityBites

            So you still don’t understand the reality that there are lots of different religions practiced in this diverse nation, or it drives you nuts to acknowledge it

          • ShemSilber

            Absolutely I DO understand that there are many different religions practiced and NOT practiced in this nation. I have come into contact with several of them, and each of them under the present system (or lack thereof) is free to exercise religious rights, short of causing damage to other peoples. And watching from above is Yahuwah Tzevaot (of armies), to whom we will all have to answer for how we lived our lives in His creation.

            Isaiah, chapter 40, verse 15 says: “See, the nations are as a drop in a bucket, and are counted as the small dust on the balance: see, He lifts up the coastlands as fine dust.”

            Regardless of if you have religion or not, you breathe with His permission, which He is glad to let you do, because He gives us all time to come around to His Way. If He takes away that permission, you croak and your life is gone.

            If some human murders, that person is answerable for now to the civil authorities that Yahuwah has placed over us, but ultimately to Him in the Day of Judgment, and that is regardless of whether we acknowldedge Him or not. There’s no way around it. Period, in the Name of our Master Yahushua (Lord Jesus), who forms us all, whether our parents believe it or not, omein. Period. See Isaiah 45:23 and remember that when your knees bow and your tongue swears that He is the Mighty One, and there IS no other, omein.

          • RealityBites

            So in other words you wish we were a theocracy but grudgingly accept that other religions have equal billing also. Glad you’re making progress

          • ShemSilber

            No, what I do is acknowledge that we have a Yahu-ocracy operating over all of us, but Yahuwah is not interfering at this time with those who believe contrary to His truth, of which I am only in the process of learning.

            Soon these Dark Ages will be over and done with, and that is neither religion nor wishful thinking, because the same one whom the Christians call “Lord Jesus,” that is, the Master Yahushua, is soon to set His throne in Jerusalem, ISRAEL, from where He will administer peace on earth. You will not have to believe it for it to be, and nobody has to wish for it or even believe it for it to be done, but it will be a plain simple fact of life, like daybreak.

            All the progress I have made is thanks to Yahuwah working through His Son, the Master Yahushua, and may He in mercy do the same for you, omein.

          • ShemSilber

            Shalom, Brother Amos. All we can do with a closed mind like RealityBites here shows is present the facts. If they don’t accept them now, they will when they meet the Master Yahushua (Lord Jesus) in person. Guaranteed!

          • David SoMo

            You are confused. Who has beguiled you? Either human beings have the right to life or they don’t. There is no in between. It’s not about owning “women”. Who the heck would want to own one? Living with one is challenge enough!

          • ShemSilber

            Shalom, Brother David. I pray your in-laws are doing well again and home from the hospital.

            Glad to see you here. I’ve had a running witness with Reality Bites today, but the Master will penetrate his darkness, too. He may be a hard nut to crack, but then so was I, before the Master woke me up.

            Shalom.

          • David SoMo

            Ha! You’re not the only hard nut that got cracked my brother!

            It amazes me to reckon that I was just as blind.

            Shalom

          • ShemSilber

            HalleluYAH and omein!

  • ShemSilber

    There is a reality here that the LGBT subculture and the murder-your-babies-before-they-have a chance-to-be-born cabal do not see: Neither one of them is really about human rights, but about the elitists push for population control. It seems like ancient history, but they started out talking about refraining from sexual intercourse, then they graduated to condoms and birth-control pills, and gradually they gave us a sob-story about how the girls were suffering and dying from illegal abortions, then there was a push for baby murdering clinics.

    As for the LGBT, they have gone from don’t-ask-don’t-tell to brag-about-it-every-chance-you-get to transvestitism to deceitful so-called sex changes (which cannot be done, no matter HOW good the surgeon is, for we are still the same gender as before, only we have committed gross malingery that in our demented state we believe is a sex change.

    The Master Yahushua (Lord Jesus) formed us in our mothers’ wombs, no matter to whom we were born, Chinese, Jewish, whatever, and He assigned us a gender at conception. Since He gave that life, we have NO right to murder it on the one hand nor to attempt to reassign the opposite gender to our bodies on the other hand. But the globalists, the population-reduction pushers, think they are above the Creator and they can do absolutely as they please. They will find out otherwise on the Day of Judgment.

    May there be increasing numbers of both groups, the perverts and the murderers, who come to realize that the Master Yahushua came to save them FROM their sins (not IN them) who cease and desist with these abominable behaviors and turn to the Master who descended from the heavens to pay the price of our sins on the tree of execution because He has NO pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that we turn from our wickedness to Him in order to receive everlasting life from Him, omein and omein!

    • David SoMo

      How heartbreaking it is, knowing that women can even think to throw away the life that is inside them because it is inconvenient.

      I read a story awhile back about a lady who was pregnant and then developed cancer. The doctors told her that she needed to have chemotherapy and such or else she would die. She asked the doctors how it would effect her baby. They told she would lose the baby, but if she didn’t do what they said, she would die. She decided to hold on. She delivered her healthy baby, then died.

      That, people, is a mother. She sacrificed her own life for the life of another; her baby.

      I have known many women that have had abortions and they all thought it was the right decision at the time. Years after, not one of them thought it was the right decision and they ALL regretted killing their babies.