Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi can cut Medicaid funding to Planned Parenthood, 5th Circuit rules

The 5th Circuit Court overturned a previous appellate court decision on Monday

Updated: November 24, 2020 - 2:35pm

A federal appeals court ruled that Texas and Louisiana will be able to cut off Medicaid funding to Planned Parenthood clinics, reversing the ruling of an earlier appellate court ruling that prevented Texas from doing so.

The ruling, which was decided by the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, reversed an earlier ruling that blocked Texas from enforcing its ban on Medicaid funding for Planned Parenthood. However, the ruling also affects Mississippi, which is also under 5th Circuit jurisdiction. 

This case has been winding its way through the regional circuit and appellate courts for years, often yielding deadlocked decisions on even numbered panels. Now, six judges who are appointees of President Trump sit on the court, four of whom participated in Monday's decision by joining with Judge Priscilla Owen's opinion. 

Owen's decision concludes that Planned Parenthood affiliates cannot contest the state's determination that they are not eligible to receive Medicaid funds.

Judge James Dennis authored the dissent, which states that the court's ruling conflicts with the decisions of other circuit courts and will render millions of individuals in Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi "vulnerable to unlawful state interference with their choice of health care providers."

Planned Parenthood says, "About a third of the revenue received at Planned Parenthood (34%) is from government health services reimbursements and grants, such as Medicaid and Title X. In 2017, those reimbursements and grants added up to $564 million – all of which went to health centers for medical services," meaning that this ruling could financially devastating for the company. 

The Supreme Court previously rejected controversial limiting regulations on abortion clinics from the state of Louisiana, however, along with other state-level bans, this legislation has the potential to make its way to the Supreme Court for the type of landmark abortion rights case individuals speculate on from both sides of the political aisle.