Attorney General Ken Paxton urged the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit to overturn a district court decision that blocked Texas from cutting off state Medicaid funding to Planned Parenthood. The injunction was issued in spite of the evidence of raw, unedited footage from undercover videos showing a willingness by Planned Parenthood officials to traffic in fetal body parts and manipulate the timing and method of abortions.
“Planned Parenthood practices constitute serious breaches of medical and ethical standards,” Attorney General Paxton told the 5th Circuit in a legal brief. “They justify the Inspector General’s decision to terminate Texas Planned Parenthood affiliates’ Medicaid agreements, on the basis that these entities are not ‘qualified’ providers under the Medicaid Act.”
“Texas acted to cut off major taxpayer funding for Planned Parenthood because of its repugnant conduct,” Attorney General Paxton said. “Clear indications of Planned Parenthdood’s adjustment of abortion procedures to procure and sell fetal body parts for research should be enough to reverse a district court’s egregious ruling.”
In December 2016, the Texas Health and Human Services inspector general removed Planned Parenthood from the state’s Medicaid program for the video footage of actions that “violate generally accepted medical standards” and for making false statements to law enforcement. Planned Parenthood receives approximately $3.1 million in state Medicaid funding annually.