A federal appeals court Wednesday ruled that Arkansas could withhold Medicaid funding to Planned Parenthood in response to a series of undercover sting videos recorded by an anti-abortion group.
The ruling Wednesday by the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals vacates preliminary injunctions from a federal judge that required the state to continue Medicaid payments following legal challenges brought by three patients challenging Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s 2015 decision to end the state’s Medicaid contract with the women’s health group.
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The court ruled 2-1 that the patients do not have the right to challenge the state’s Medicaid contract decision.
A handful of other states have attempted to cut off funding to Planned Parenthood following the release of the sting videos by the Center for Medical Progress, which charged that Planned Parenthood illegally sells fetal tissue for profit. Planned Parenthood denied the allegations. David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt of CMP were charged with 15 felonies by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra for criminal conspiracy to invade privacy and recording the organization without consent.
A federal judge earlier this year blocked Texas from cutting off Medicaid funding from Planned Parenthood. The state’s attorney general is urging a federal appeals court to overturn that decision.