Louisiana lawmakers have not given up efforts to defund the abortion chain Planned Parenthood, despite court setbacks.
On Thursday, attorneys for the state asked the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to rehear its decision to block a state law defunding abortion groups of taxpayer dollars, the AP reports.
The lawyers said the court should rehear the case because Justice Priscilla Owen recently changed her ruling on the case. Earlier this month, Owen issued a new opinion in favor of defunding Planned Parenthood, according to the report. Owen cited a 1980 Supreme Court ruling involving Pennsylvania regulators revoking Medicaid funds from a nursing home.
Last September, a three-judge panel of the 5th Circuit Court unanimously struck down the Louisiana law; Owen’s change now makes that decision 2-1.
Lawyers for the state of Louisiana now want the full 15-member court to rehear the case, the AP reports.
Last summer, Planned Parenthood took Louisiana to court in an attempt to preserve its taxpayer funding. In its lawsuit, the abortion business accused the de-funding effort of being “politically motivated” and claimed that it would cut off women’s access to health care.
Even though hundreds of other health care options exist for the small number of women who get non-abortion care at Planned Parenthood, the 5th Circuit judges agreed with Planned Parenthood’s claim that de-funding it would somehow strip women of their health care.
In August 2015, former Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal canceled a state contract with Planned Parenthood that provides the abortion company with family planning funding through Medicaid. Planned Parenthood quickly sued to block the move.
Then Gov. Jindal said at the time: “In recent weeks, it has been shocking to see reports of the alleged activities taking place at Planned Parenthood facilities across the country. Planned Parenthood does not represent the values of the people of Louisiana and shows a fundamental disrespect for human life. It has become clear that this is not an organization that is worthy of receiving public assistance from the state.”
Louisiana lawmakers have not given up. In 2016, they passed a bill to defund abortion groups like Planned Parenthood that abort unborn babies. The bill insures that businesses and organizations that perform abortions cannot receive taxpayer dollars, even for non-abortion purposes.
At the federal level, Planned Parenthood receives about half a billion taxpayer dollars annually. Federal lawmakers also are working to defund the abortion chain amid allegations of selling aborted babies parts, Medicaid fraud, failures to report sexual abuse and other issues.
Planned Parenthood is the largest abortion business in the United States, killing more than 300,000 unborn babies every year.