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Planned Parenthood May Close Lubbock, Texas Abortion Clinic

by Steven Ertelt | Lubbock, TX | LifeNews.com | 11/29/12 11:12 AM

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The Planned Parenthood abortion business in Texas is considering closing its abortion facility in Lubbock, Texas thanks to the decision by the state to revoke taxpayer funding for the abortion giant.

Ritta Diller, the head of the pro-life group STOPP Planned Parenthood has more on the possible decision.

She said: “With funding for Planned Parenthood in Texas scheduled to come to a screeching halt on December 31, Lubbock Planned Parenthood officials are predicting “a change in the tides come 12/31.” An October 26 petition filed by Planned Parenthood in Travis County claims that “Without WHP funding, (Planned Parenthood of Lubbock) will likely be forced to cut back the hours of its health center or even to close its only health center entirely.”

Diller added: “A Lubbock Avalanche Journal article says that, in 2011, the Lubbock Planned Parenthood abortion center got a whopping $540,000 in taxpayer funded Women’s Health Program reimbursements—almost half of its total revenue. Planned Parenthood won’t say whether the Lubbock abortion facility will shut down, but the article quotes Planned Parenthood interim CEO Tara Haskell saying, “I still feel like we’re in limbo at this point.”

“The Texas Health and Human Services Commission was informed by the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid that it will lose $36 million in funding on December 31 if it excludes Planned Parenthood from the Women’s Health Program. The state of Texas has pledged to exclude Planned Parenthood and other entities that commit or promote abortion, regardless of the attempt of federal officials to hold it hostage by threatening the state that it will cut off the funding entirely if it refuses to fund the abortion giant,” she said.

“Planned Parenthood took over operation of the only abortion facility in Lubbock in October of 2010,” she concluded. “We look forward to seeing the Lubbock abortion facility and many other Texas Planned Parenthood facilities close their doors for good!”

In October, the abortion company announced it would close its facility in Abilene, Texas.

As LifeNews reported then, Planned Parenthood of West Central Texas announced it is closing the Abilene clinic, which gives out the dangerous RU 486 abortion drug that has claimed the lives of dozens of women and injured thousands more, on November 9. Women will be sent to the nearby San Angelo Heath Center, which provides women with legitimate medical care and not abortions.

“We share the concern of community members about what the long term consequences of Texas’ cuts to family planning funding will mean,” said Carla Holeva, interim CEO of Planned Parenthood of West Texas, according to a reportin the Reporter-News.

Last year, the abortion business closed as many as 12 locations following the end of the 82ndlegislative special session, which dealt the abortion industry a $64.2 million blow.

In August, in a major victory, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans lifted a federal judge’s temporary injunction preventing the state of Texas from de-funding the Planned Parenthood abortion business.

The court ruled Texas can cut off funding for Planned Parenthood within its women’s health services program because Planned Parenthood is an abortion business.

Recently, a panel of the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court overturned an appeals judge’s decision [that allowed Planned Parenthood to continue receiving funding]. The panel ruled the law Texas approved last year to prohibit abortion facilities from taking part in the program to protect taxpayers from funding abortion facilities is [constitutional].

Fifth Circuit Judge Jerry Smith agreed  to overturn the stay he recently issued allowing the state to keep the funding ban in place.

Texas officials appealed the decision to the full appeals court and have already said they will be forced to shut down the program if Planned Parenthood wins its lawsuit to force the state to fund the abortion company.

Federal District Judge Lee Yeakel initially ruled in favor of nine Planned Parenthood affiliates — giving them a temporary injunction blocking enforcement of the law and requiring the state to continue funding the abortion business until the lawsuit is fully adjudicated.

However, state officials quickly appealed the ruling — with Attorney General Greg Abbott filing an emergency motion for stay in the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Judge Jerry E. Smith granted the stay “pending further order of this court” and requested a response from the abortion business by the close of business today.

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Since the program began in 2005, Planned Parenthood — America’s largest abortion business — has disproportionately consumed 40 percent of the program’s budget. Although the rule banning abortion businesses has been part of the Women’s Health Program from the very beginning, it had not been enforced until 2011 when state lawmakers reaffirmed their commitment to keeping tax dollars out of the abortion industry.

In response, President Obama withdrew all federal support for the program, and Planned Parenthood sued the state of Texas. Judge Lee Yeakel blocked the law from going into effect, yet Yeakel’s ruling was appealed by Attorney General Greg Abbott, and the Fifth Circuit Court removed the block.

In addition to these approximately 4,000 agencies, Governor Perry’s office has identified another 2,500 eligible providers with 4,600 locations across the state. Planned Parenthood runs 69 facilities.